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Sacramento Kings vs Oklahoma City Thunder prediction & match preview - May 4th, 2021 | NBA Season 2020-21

Sacramento Kings
Sacramento Kings' De'Aaron Fox
ANALYST
Modified 04 May 2021
Preview

Two sides separated by one place in the Western Conference face off on Tuesday as the Oklahoma City Thunder host the Sacramento Kings. Both teams have been well outside the NBA playoff picture this campaign, though the Kings could make a late surge with one of the kinder remaining fixture schedules.

Match details

Fixture: Sacramento Kings vs Oklahoma City Thunder | NBA Season 2020-21.

Date & Time: Tuesday, May 4th, 8PM ET (Wednesday, May 5th, 5:30 AM IST).

Venue: Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, OK

Sacramento Kings preview

Sacramento Kings teammates in loss against Washington Wizards
Sacramento Kings teammates in loss against Washington Wizards

Two impressive road wins against the LA Lakers and Dallas Mavericks over the weekend have helped the Sacramento Kings' slim postseason hopes.

Of their remaining eight games, only the Memphis Grizzlies and Utah Jazz have winning records, with the former only one game above 500. They also play the Oklahoma City Thunder three times in this period. Oklahoma are on steep decline at the moment. On top of all of this, the current tenth seed, San Antonio Spurs, have the toughest fixture schedule.

However slim these hopes may be, Sacramento Kings fans will be excited for next season. They have considerable talent on their roster and have a few young stars in De'Aaron Fox, Marvin Bagley III and Tyrese Haliburton who could help them back to the postseason.

Key player - Buddy Hield

Buddy Hield has had to step up for the Sacramento Kings recently, with De'Aaron Fox missing their last five games due to the covid-19 protocols. Although he has seen his efficiency fall this season, Hield remains a prolific scoring threat for the Kings and has an excellent relationship with backcourt partner De'Aaron Fox.

The 28-year-old has been the Sacramento Kings' standout performer in their last ten matchups, averaging 17.3 points and 4.8 rebounds. He has also lifted his shooting accuracy, scoring 46.9% of his 8.1 threes per game and had a +/- of 2.1.

Sacramento Kings predicted lineup

Point Guard - Delon Wright l Shooting Guard - Buddy Hield l Small Forward - Maurice Harkless l Power Forward - Marvin Bagley III l Center - Richaun Holmes

Oklahoma City Thunder preview

Oklahoma City Thunder center Moses Brown
Oklahoma City Thunder center Moses Brown

The Oklahoma City Thunder are tanking hard at the moment. Looking at their remaining games, they could end up as the second-bottom team in the West.

Despite their inexperience, they remained competitive until Shai Gilgeous-Alexander was ruled out for the season and it has been tough going for them ever since. Without their dynamic guard, the Oklahoma City Thunder have gone 5-25.

It will be a long way back for the Oklahoma City Thunder, though if they can avoid injuries next season they may end up with a winning record. Luguentz Dort and Gilgeous-Alexander have impressed massively this season, while rookie Theo Maledon has been one of the surprise players to come out of the 2020 NBA draft.

Key player - Darius Bazley

Darius Bazley is one of only four Oklahoma City Thunder players to have played in their last ten games. In that time, the 20-year-old averaged 18.6 points and 7.3 rebounds, shooting at 42% from the field.

Bazley has certainly been one of the more impressive young stars in OKC's season. Given more responsibility as a starter in his second campaign in the league, Bazley has almost tripled his scoring output and is far more effective per 36 minutes for points, assists and rebounds per game.

The Oklahoma City Thunder forward ranks top among NBA sophomores for boards and third for double-doubles this season.

Oklahoma City Thunder predicted lineup

Point Guard - Theo Maledon l Shooting Guard - Luguentz Dort l Small Forward - Aleksej Pokusevski l Power Forward - Darius Bazley l Center - Moses Brown.

Kings vs Thunder match prediction

If the Sacramento Kings have even the slightest belief they can make the playoffs, they need to win games like this against weaker opposition. Neither side is particularly effective on the defensive end, having conceded over 150 points to an opponent last week.

Neither side is the most potent on offense either, therefore fans shouldn't expect a high-scoring affair. The Oklahoma City Thunder have lost 15 of their last 16 games and have scored less than 100 points in three of their last five.

With all of this in mind, we are predicting a comfortable win for the Sacramento Kings.

Where to watch the Kings vs Thunder matchup

Fans in America can catch the game live on local broadcasting networks NBC Sports California and Bally Sports Oklahoma. With an NBA League Pass, you can also stream the matchup at any time.

Published 04 May 2021
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