Dec 1, 2013; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) reaches in against Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry (30) during the first quarter at Sleep Train Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Why the Warriors Should Not Underestimate the Kings

The Sacramento Kings (18-35) are the worst team record wise in the Western Conference. They are a lousy 11-16 at home and an even worse 7-19 on the road. And they’re just 3-7 in their last ten games.

But when the two NorCal teams in the NBA battle each other, the results are closer than one might think.

The Warriors are 2-0 against the Kings this season, but neither win has been easy. The Warriors clipped the Kings 115-113 in Sacramento back on Dec. 1 thanks to two late Stephen Curry free throws with 8.6 seconds to go in the game. Klay Thompson connected on eight 3-pointers and added 28 points. The Warriors hit 15 of 25 threes, but struggled defensively. DeMarcus Cousins played only 21 minutes but finished with 24 points on 10-of-13 shooting. The Kings bench had three players score more than 18 points as well.

The Warriors have struggled to defend Cousins for four quarters and with a high likelihood that Andrew Bogut doesn’t play thanks to a shoulder injury, Cousins should be poised to take advantage of Old Man Jermaine O’Neal.

Cousins now in his fourth season was one of the snubs from this past All-Star game. The 23-year-old Kentucky Wildcat is averaging career bests in points, rebounds, assists, blocks, and shooting percentage.

Cousins has had a double-double in every game he has started and finished since December 20th when the Kings took on the Heat. (This excludes the Kings 21-point loss against the Rockets back on January 22nd when Cousins played a mere nine minutes and left with an injury.)

With Bogut possibly missing and the Warriors struggles defending elite bigmen, Cousins could pose a huge problem for the Warriors Tuesday night in Sacramento.

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