LOS ANGELES - The Kings are one of two winless teams on the road this season.
They can change that tonight. But it won't be easy against the Los Angeles Clippers. Tyreke Evans (bruised knee left knee) is out tonight, barring a miraculous improvement.
Here are five things to pay attention to as the Kings are to pull off the upset.
1. Early energy - That shouldn't be a problem for the Kings. The Clippers are a good team and if anything, the Kings tend to try their best against marquee teams.
2. The crying game - After being labeled "criers" by Indiana's George Hill, will the Kings live up to that name? It seems as if at least one time a game (possibly more) the Kings are beaten down the court because they are griping with officials and end up surrendering an easy score.
3. The backup point guard - Aaron Brooks will start. Who replaces him first is a 50/50 guess. Jimmer Fredette was the first guy off the bench Friday night, which means Isaiah Thomas could be the first point guard off the bench. Kings coach Keith Smart suggested it might be time to settle on one guy for a few games. That would provide some continuity to the rotation.
4. Robinson's hustle - Rookie power forward Thomas Robinson has stood out lately with his energetic play. He ran down two Indiana fast breaks last night to block shots at the rim. If that energy could rub off on teammates, the Kings have a chance to upset the Clippers. It will be needed on defense.
5. Team ball - The Kings have to share the basketball. Besides being viewed as "criers" the Kings are viewed as a collection of one-on-one players. Well that's true. The Kings do have a lot of one-on-one players, but none so dominant that they can rely on that alone to win games.