In a battle of geographic rivals, the Sacramento Kings will venture the 90 miles down I-80 on Saturday night to face the back-to-back defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors.
In a rare scheduling anomaly for the Kings, they will draw a Warriors team that is on the second night of a back-to-back and playing their third game in four nights. In addition, the Warriors will play short-handed because of injuries to both Stephen Curry and Draymond Green, as well as center DeMarcus Cousins, who has yet to step foot on the court this season.
Stay in the game with the latest updates on your beloved Bay Area and California sports teams! Sign up here for our All Access Daily newsletter.
The Kings (10-8) are looking for their third consecutive win and a chance to push three games over .500 on the season. If the season ended today, Sacramento would be in the playoffs as the Western Conference's No. 8 seed.
The Warriors (13-7) hope to make it two wins in a row after besting the Trail Blazers on Friday night at Oracle Arena.
Warriors Pregame Live on NBC Sports Bay Bay Area begins at 4:30 p.m., with Kings Pregame Live on NBC Sports Bay California at 5 and tip-off scheduled for 5:30.
Golden State Warriors
Warriors by 5.5
Projected Starting Lineup
PG De’Aaron Fox
SG Buddy Hield
SF Iman Shumpert
PF Nemanja Bjelica
C Willie Cauley-Stein
PG Quinn Cook
SG Klay Thompson
SF Andre Iguodala
PF Kevin Durant
C Damian Jones
C Kosta Koufos (right calf strain) OUT.
C DeMarcus Cousins (Achilles’ tendon surgery rehab) OUT, G Stephen Curry (groin strain) OUT, F Draymond Green (toe sprain) OUT, F Alfonzo McKinnie (foot soreness) OUT.
Coach Dave Joerger is choosing continuity with his starting lineup, playing the same five starters for 10 consecutive games and 14 of the first 18. He turned to 10 players in Sacramento's win over the Utah Jazz on Wednesday, but he'll likely go deeper in Oakland with the Kings playing the first night of a back-to-back. Seven Kings players scored in double-figures in Utah, including a team-high 23 by Willie Cauley-Stein.
Coach Steve Kerr continues to cobble together a lineup void of Curry and Green. Filling in for Curry, Quinn Cook is coming off a 19-point game against the Blazers, and he has posted double-figure scoring in nine of his last 11 games for Golden State.
Kerr is riding the hot hand at center. In the win over the Blazers, Jordan Bell gave the team a spark off the bench, but it's a "by committee" position until Cousins returns from injury. The Warriors haven't reached championship level yet this season, but they're as dangerous as any team in the league.