Basketball

NBA Schedule Set – Kings to Face Four ‘Playoff’ Teams

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Eight Games To End 13 Year Playoff Drought

The Kings will face four ‘current playoff’ teams in their quest to end their 13 year playoff drought when the NBA season resumes on 7/30 (hopefully).

Over the weekend, the NBA released the schedule for the final eight games for the twenty two teams heading to the NBA’s Orlando ‘bubble’.

Sacramento will be among a number of teams in the NBA western conference fighting for the final playoff spots in the western conference.

Kings to Face Four ‘Playoff’ Teams

Below is the Kings schedule for the remaining eight games:

7/31: San Antonio Spurs

8/2: Orlando Magic

8/4: Dallas Mavericks

8/6: New Orleans Pelicans

8/7: Brooklyn Nets

8/9: Houston Rockets

8/11: New Orleans Pelicans

8/13: Los Angeles Lakers

Play-In’ Scenario Benefits Kings

The NBA has made some changes during this time of…. change, and the Kings playoff hopes definitely benefit from those changes.

In regards to the final seed in each conference, the changes for the 2020 season are listed below:

  • Teams within four games of the 8th seed after the regular season period will advance to a play-in tournament.
  • If no team is within four games, the 8th seed automatically clinches a playoff spot.
  • Otherwise, the 8th and 9th seeds play in a double-elimination tournament that gives the team with a better record the advantage.
  • The 9th seed would have to defeat the 8th seed twice to take its spot, while the 8th seed would only have to win once.

Kings Within Striking Distance

Sacramento is currently tied for 9th place with three other teams in the NBA western conference.

WesternWLPctGB
L.A. Lakers 14914.778— 
L.A. Clippers 24420.6885.5
Denver 34322.6627.0
Utah 44123.6418.5
Oklahoma City 54024.6259.5
Houston 64024.6259.5
Dallas 74027.59711.0
Memphis 83233.49218.0
Portland2937.43921.5
New Orleans2836.43821.5
Sacramento2836.43821.5
San Antonio2736.42922.0
Phoenix2639.40024.0

The Healthy Will Prosper

I think that a big factor in the NBA season will be which teams can stay healthy.

Not just injury free but also COVID free.

A 14 day quarantine for a crucial player on a team could have a HUGE effect on that team, and the league as a whole.

Three Kings Players Test Positive for COVID-19 –
14 Day Quarantine Protocol Enacted

The Kings had three players testing positive for COVID in the last week, including Buddy Hield, Alex Len and Jabari Parker. (Link to KCRA 3 Article, “3 Sacramento Kings players test positive for COVID-19”)

Regardless of the larger health implications, the players that don’t take the quarantine protocol seriously will be a detriment to their team.

My Predictions!

I think the Kings will go 4-4!

My individual game predictions in parentheses below!

7/31: San Antonio Spurs (WIN), 8/2: Orlando Magic (W), 8/4: Dallas Mavericks (LOSS), 8/6: New Orleans Pelicans (L), 8/7: Brooklyn Nets (W), 8/9: Houston Rockets (L), 8/11: New Orleans Pelicans (W), 8/13: Los Angeles Lakers (L).

Will that be good enough to remain in the 9th seed, and within 4 games of the 8th seed?

I’m excited to watch and see!

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Tom Witt has been in sports media for just under a decade. He started off freelancing, earning a role as an editor and Sacramento Kings writer at Overtime Heroics.

He also is an avid Spikeball fan/competitor (roundnet is the name of the sport played on Spikeball equipment) - Tom is also the head editor at the Roundnet World blog.