SACRAMENTO -– The Warriors, who won 24 consecutive games to start the season, will be out to run the current wins streak to six when they face the Kings on Saturday night at Sleep Train Arena.
The Warriors (34-2) have owned the Kings in recent years, but Sacramento appears to be making a move upward. The Kings (15-21), through games on Friday, were only one-half game out of the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference.
Sacramento has won three of its last four, with the only loss coming after they blew a seven-point lead in Dallas and lost in overtime. The key for the Kings has been the play of big man DeMarcus Cousins, who is averaging 33.2 points and 13.8 rebounds during the stretch.
The Warriors pose quite the challenge, though, as they have won the three previous meetings this season by an average of 15.7 points.
Warriors by 7.5.
MATCHUP TO WATCH
Andrew Bogut and Festus Ezeli vs. DeMarcus Cousins. Though the Kings often can take out less-talented teams, they can’t compete at the higher levels without substantial production from Big Cuz. Sacramento led the Warriors by 2 (66-64) when Cousins was ejected in the second quarter last week in Oakland. Bogut knows him well, and Ezeli is getting to know him. If they neutralize Cousins, who has played exceedingly well over the past week, the Kings are done.
Warriors: 9-1. Kings: 5-5.
Warriors: F James Michael McAdoo (L foot toe sprain) and G Leandro Barbosa (L shoulder sprain) are listed as out.
Kings: C Willie Cauley-Stein (R middle finger laceration) is listed as probable. F Omri Casspi (back soreness) and G James Anderson (L hamstring strain) are listed as doubtful. F Duje Dukon (R tibia contusion), F/C Eric Moreland (L fifth metatarsal fracture) is listed as out.
The Warriors have won the last 11 meetings, including three previous games this season, and are seeking their third consecutive 4-0 season sweep.