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Sacramento Kings at Los Angeles Lakers: Kings Start Brutal Stretch With Game Against Defending Champs

The Kings haven't had the best of luck beating any team this season, much less the good ones (only two wins against teams above .500). The Lakers are no different as the Kings have already suffered two losses at their hands, and both games the Lakers were shorthanded without Andrew Bynum. Bynum is back now however, and he's been a big boost to both Los Angeles defense, and their offense, as it allows Pau Gasol to move back to his more natural position of PF, and also allows the Lakers the luxury of bringing in Lamar Odom off the bench. The big man rotation of Bynum, Gasol, and Odom is probably the best in the league, and why the Lakers are still considered favorites for their 3rd title in a row.

Bynum himself might have a bit of a grudge against Sacramento, as Rookie DeMarcus Cousins tweeted this summer that "Bynum didn't deserve to touch the trophy" as he had been injured much of the time last year. Its not likely that he's forgotten that.

The Kings are coming off a tough loss at home against Charlotte, a game which had no rhythm thanks to the 59 combined fouls. Carl Landry and Tyreke Evans both led the Kings with 19 points, but they still weren't able to hold off the Bobcats, and lost by 5.

Perhaps the only position the Kings have an advantage on the Lakers in is at the point guard with Beno Udrih going against Derek Fisher and Steve Blake. Blake and Fisher are more spot-up shooters in the Lakers offense, while Udrih is often asked to create his own shot, something he's been very good at this year. Plus he did this once in a preseason game:

If the Kings hope to win this game, they're going to have to find some way to score inside, and also to stop the Lakers from doing the same.  This is definitely not an easy task, especially considering how in the last trip to LA (a 113-80 loss), the Kings were outscored in the paint 68-30.  This doesn't even paint how bad the picture really was, as the Lakers had a 50-10 points in the paint advantage midway through the 3rd quarter, before it really became garbage time.

The likelihood of Sacramento winning this game is low.  Low might be too generous of a word there.  They'll likely have to play better than they have in any other game this season, and the Lakers will likely have to play worse than any other game this season.  The chances are absymal.  Here's hoping simply for a competitive and exciting game.