The Kings, on the other hand, have had a flying start to their NBA campaign this season. However, considering the talent at the disposal of the Rockets, they will be no pushovers against the in-form Kings.
Fixture: Sacramento Kings vs Houston Rockets - NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Thursday, December 31st, 2020 - 7:00 PM ET (Friday, January 1st, 2020 - 5:30 AM IST).
Venue: Toyota Center, Houston, TX
Sacramento Kings Preview
The Sacramento Kings are on a rich vein of form at the moment. They have won three of their four games and have looked formidable, to say the least.
Buddy Hield, in particular, has started to find his form once again. The 28-year-old made multiple shots in clutch moments for his team this season. Rookie Tyrese Haliburton has also been incredible for the franchise and has improved at both ends with every game.
While the Sacramento Kings' defense remains a work in progress, it has exhibited encouraging signs of improvement.
DaQuan Jeffries (ankle), who has been ruled out of this game, is the Kings' only injury concern.
Key Player - De'Aaron Fox
De'Aaron Fox has been on fire this season, averaging 20.3 points and 6.8 assists per game while shooting 44.3% from the field and 40% from the deep.
While his defense needs to improve, Fox could undoubtedly be one of the Sacramento Kings' most threatening players against the Houston Rockets.
Sacramento Kings' Predicted Lineup
G De'Aaron Fox, G Buddy Hield, F Harrison Barnes, F Marvin Bagley III, C Richaun Holmes.
Houston Rockets Preview
The Houston Rockets have been winless in the NBA this season, with one of the big reasons for that being the lack of quality surrounding James Harden.
Fortunately for the franchise, there is some good news in the injury front. DeMarcus Cousins and John Wall are expected to feature against the Sacramento Kings. Considering much the Houston Rockets missed them, the duo's return could mark a turning point in the season for the franchise.
However, Mason Jones (quarantine) and Eric Gordon (quarantine) are ruled out for this game while Kenyon Martin Jr. (illness) and Ben McLemore (illness) are doubtful. Chris Clemons is unavailable, as he continues to recuperate from his Achilles injury.
Key Player - James Harden
Despite the Houston Rockets' underwhelming returns this season, James Harden has been in incredible form.
The 31-year-old has averaged 39 points and 12.5 assists per game while shooting at 59.5% from the field and 50% from behind the arc. These numbers are likely to dip as the season progresses, but Harden's form could undoubtedly be key against the Sacramento Kings.
While there are still question marks surrounding his defensive work, James Harden remains a key player for the Houston Rockets.
Houston Rockets' Predicted Lineup
G John Wall, G James Harden, F Danuel House, F Christian Wood, C DeMarcus Cousins.
Sacramento Kings vs Houston Rockets Match Prediction
This game is likely to be a close one, but the Houston Rockets could end up on the losing side.
While the returns of DeMarcus Cousins and John Wall is encouraging for the Rockets, the duo is unlikely to hit the ground running and play for long periods due to their poor conditioning.
Considering the same, the Sacramento Kings are likely to extend the Houston Rockets' winless run in the NBA this season.
Where to watch the Sacramento Kings vs Houston Rockets NBA game?
For those in the USA, this game will be broadcast live on the AT&T network. International fans can stream the game live on the NBA League Pass.