UTAH JAZZ

Jazz Prepare For Kings In First Meeting Of The Season

Apr 9, 2021, 6:02 PM
Sacramento Kings guard Tyrese Haliburton (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)...
Sacramento Kings guard Tyrese Haliburton (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Utah Jazz are preparing to face the Sacramento Kings in the two teams’ first meeting of the season.

The Jazz have played every team in the NBA through 52 games this season except for Sacramento who they will play three times in the final 20 games of the season.

After a streak of five consecutive wins, the Kings have lost five straight as they prepare to play four of their next five games on the road.

Jazz Look To Extend Franchise Best Home Win Streak

The Jazz are looking to extend their franchise-record home winning streak to 24 when they host the Kings on Saturday. The team hasn’t lost in Salt Lake City since December 31, while the 23 consecutive wins match the 16th best stretch in NBA history.

Donovan Mitchell scored 37 points in Thursday’s win over the Portland Trail Blazers. The Jazz ran away with a 19 point victory after trailing by as much as eight in the second quarter.

The All-Star guard has now scored a combined 78 points in the last two games, including 41 points in the Jazz overtime loss to the Phoenix Suns on Wednesday.

Guard Jordan Clarkson missed his first game of the season against Portland after suffering an ankle sprain against the Suns. The Sixth Man of the Year front-runner is listed as doubtful for tomorrow’s game.

Kings Look To Snap Skid

The Kings come into Utah looking to snap their five-game losing skid. After a five-game win streak pushed them towards contention for the Western Conference postseason play-in tournament, the Kings now sit 2.5 games back of the Golden State Warriors for the 10th seed who would faceoff against the seventh-seeded Dallas Mavericks for one of the final two spots in the playoffs.

Sacramento joins the Oklahoma City Thunder as the only two teams in the NBA who are winless over their last five outings. The Kings have the sixth-worst defensive rating over their last five games allowing opponents to score 116.7 points per 100 possessions.

Offensively, they’ve been even worse. Sacramento has the league’s fourth-worst offense over the last five games managing just 104.9 points per 100 possessions against their opponents.

While the Jazz have struggled to shoot the ball over their last three games, connecting on just 26.9 of their three-point shots, the Kings haven’t fared much better

Sacramento is shooting just 30.9 percent during the losing streak, fifth-worst in the NBA.

Key Matchup

The key matchup between the Jazz and Kings will put centers Rudy Gobert and Richaun Holmes against one another. Holmes is having a break-out season in Sacramento averaging 14.2 points, 9.0 rebounds, and 1.7 blocks.

Gobert meanwhile is averaging 14.7 points, 13.4 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks for the Jazz. The All-NBA center scored 18 points and grabbed 20 rebounds in the Jazz win on Thursday while Holmes has scored in double-digits in 20 straight games for the Kings.

Gobert and the Jazz are 7-2 all-time in games against Holmes-led teams.

Broadcast

The Jazz and Kings will tip-off at 7 pm MT, the game will be broadcast on AT&T SportsNet.

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