Larry Sanders dunks over DeMarcus Cousins in the Kings' 103-100 win over the Bucks last season. Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Milwaukee Bucks Game Preview: Virginia is for Lovers and Kings


A suddenly depleted Bucks team (10-9) looks to extend a modest two-game winning steak tonight against the Sacramento Kings (7-13). The Bucks could potentially play without up to four of their regular rotation players tonight, while the Kings will likely have back Tyreke Evans, who is expected to return (http://www.sacbee.com/2012/12/12/5048114/big-headline-goes-here-pleasejjjjjjjj.html <– I liked this HTTP address too much to overwrite it with my own text) after missing five games with a knee bruise.

In the Kings’ most recent outing, a 119-96 loss in Dallas Monday, Francisco Garcia kept a bad loss from getting worse by making seven of his twelve three point shots and scoring 25 points.  Sacramento was doomed by a first-half offensive rut that saw them miss 12 straight shots and commit nine turnovers.  They were held without a field goal during the 11-minute nap, during which the Mavericks outscored them by a 31-3 margin.  Prior to the loss, the Kings had won three straight games.

Following the game, O.J. Mayo and DeMarcus Cousins had some back and forth discussion through the media over a blow from Cousins to Mayo’s groin area.

John Salmons should get a chance to play against his former team on the evening of his 33rd birthday.  Samuel Dalembert might too, if Scott Skiles finds the need to use him after pulling him from the starter’s role a few games ago.

Theoretically, Marquis Daniels was a King too, after a scary spinal cord injury during a game.  The Celtics sent him to Sacramento for a top-55 protected pick in the 2017 draft.  Daniels never played a game with the Kings before returning to Boston the next season.  The trade also created a trade exception that the Celtics used to take Keyon Dooling off the Bucks’ hands last year.

Projected Lineups:

Kings: Aaron Brooks, Tyreke Evans*,  John Salmons, Jason Thompson, DeMarcus Cousins
Bucks: Brandon Jennings, Monta Ellis, Marquis Daniels, Ekpe Udoh*, Samuel Dalembert

Injury Status:

Tyreke Evans (sore left knee): questionable (see above)
Mike Dunleavy (bruised left knee): questionable
Ersan Ilyasova (right lower leg contusion): probable
Ekpe Udoh (left wrist sprain): questionable
Beno Udrih (right ankle sprain): out

Some Statistics 

The four-factor stats for the Bucks and Kings are shockingly similar, except that Milwaukee is favored in nearly every category by a slim margin.

Milwaukee has the fourth-worst foul rate at .238 free throws per field goal attempt, but Sacramento is dead last in the NBA at .260.  Getting their fair share of free throw attempts in the game could go a long way toward determining if the Bucks can pull this game out.

Offense Four Factors Defense Four Factors
Rk Team SRS ORtg DRtg Pace eFG% TOV% ORB% FT/FGA eFG% TOV% DRB% FT/FGA
17 Milwaukee Bucks -1.16 102.8 103.8 93.7 .474 12.9 26.3 .182 .488 15.2 72.8 .238
25 Sacramento Kings -4.59 101.6 107.0 92.0 .475 13.9 25.9 .188 .491 14.0 72.5 .260
League Average 0.00 105.0 105.0 92.0 .489 13.9 27.0 .212 .489 13.9 73.0 .212
Provided by Basketball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/12/2012.

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