Well folks, we’re almost done. The Cavaliers have only four games left, and kick off their stretch run with a back-to-back against the Kings and Warriors. There’s almost no chance they win enough games to pass the Bulls in the lottery odds, but they might just lose enough to draw even with the Suns. It’s unlikely, but my guess is that the Cavaliers wouldn’t be able to win even if they were trying with the Kings, Warriors, Spurs and Hornets to close the season. Let’s just fight through this one.
Who: Cleveland Cavaliers (19-59) vs. Sacramento Kings (38-40)
When: 10:00 pm ET
Where: Golden 1 Center — Sacramento, California
Where on my eyeballs? Fox Sports Ohio, NBA League Pass
Cavs status updates: Matthew Dellavedova (OUT — concussion), Kevin Love (QUESTIONABLE - shoulder soreness), J.R. Smith (Not with team), John Henson (OUT - wrist)
Kings status updates: Harry Giles (OUT - thigh), Marvin Bagley (OUT - knee)
Cavs expected starting lineup: Collin Sexton, Brandon Knight, Cedi Osman, Larry Nance Jr., Tristan Thompson
Kings expected starting lineup: De’Aaron Fox, Buddy Hield, Harrison Barnes, Nemanja Bjelica, Willie Cauley-Stein
Three keys to the game
- Flash forward to the future? Collin Sexton will square off with a breakout start from this season in De’Aaron Fox. Like Sexton, there was a stretch during his rookie season when Fox was nearly unplayable and was looking like a player who might bust out. There were certainly no indications that the star turn that came this season was coming. Sexton won’t improve in the same way Fox did — Sexton already has a ready-made jumper that should make the game easier for him. He’ll have to improve as a finisher and playmaker, but the comparison’s too easy to make.
- Will this even be competitive? If you were hoping for a fun win to end the Cavaliers season, you probably won’t get it here. The Kings aren’t in the playoff hunt anymore, but they don’t have control over their own first-round pick. That means that they are plenty incentivized to keep winning, especially on their home floor. The Cavaliers are currently riding a six-game losing streak and it’s doubtful Kevin Love plays the rest of the year. So, basically, this might not be super fun.
- Can Cedi snap out of a recent slump? Cedi has certainly cooled off in a major way. He’s only hit more than 50 percent of his field goals once in the Cavaliers last eight games, and he hasn’t been particularly close most of the time. The jumper has mostly abandoned him, and while there’s not much to take away from this, it’d be nice to have positive momentum heading into the 2019-20 season.
Fear the Sword’s Fearless Prediction
A disinterested Cavaliers team that’s probably busy planning their vacations loses this one 119-104.