Sacramento Kings (1-2 SU, 2-1 ATS, 0-3 O/U) vs. Phoenix Suns (0-3 SU, 0-3 ATS, 1-2 O/U)
NBA: Monday, October 23, 2017, at 10:00 p.m. EST
The Line: Phoenix Suns -2. Total: 210.
The Phoenix Suns are still in search of their first win of 2017-18 as they prepare to host the Sacramento Kings at Talking Stick Resort Arena on Monday night. Phoenix has opened its season with losses to Portland, the Lakers, and the Clippers. The Kings are coming off a setback at Denver on Saturday.
Sacramento is finishing up a three-game, four-day road trip that included a 96-79 loss to Denver on Saturday. Zach Randolph was the lone starter to score in double-figures and he finished with only 11 points as the team’s first five combined to shoot 10-for-38 from the floor.
While the starters struggled mightily at Denver, rookie standout De’Aaron Fox made a splash off the bench with 18 points on 8-of-13 shooting to go along with five rebounds in a team-high 29 minutes. Forward Skal Labissiere chipped in 13 points but there were very few other contributions for a team that entered Sunday ranked 29th in the league in scoring (90.7 ppg) and last in made free throws per game (8.7).
“The one thing De’Aaron did when he came in was he was aggressive to the rack and we need him to do that,” guard Garrett Temple noted. “But everybody needs to do that, we can’t settle for jumpers. If you have an open shot, take it.”
The Suns have had a woeful time trying to stop teams from scoring–a scenario that prompted the firing of head coach Earl Watson on Sunday. They hope to reverse that trend under interim head coach Jay Triano starting on Monday. Watson finished with a 33-85 mark at the helm in Phoenix and watched his team allow an average of 128.7 points during its 0-3 start, with reports of his dismissal surfacing the day after a 130-88 setback against the Clippers. Phoenix has been outrebounded by an average of 10.6–the second largest number in the league–and opponents are shooting an NBA-high 51.5 percent from the floor, including 50 percent from three-point range. Guard Eric Bledsoe followed up a 28-point performance in a two-point loss to the Lakers on Friday with a four-point, four-turnover effort against the Clippers. Rookie Josh Jackson has at least 11 points in his first three games but has yet to shoot better than 40 percent in a game and has one assist in 84 minutes thus far.
The Sacramento Kings are:
- 5-2 ATS in their last seven games against teams with losing records
- 13-6 ATS in their last 19 games against the Pacific Division
- 5-0 ATS in their last five games following a loss
The Phoenix Suns are:
- 0-4 ATS in their last four overall
- 0-4 ATS in their last four games against the Western Conference
- 1-9 ATS in their last 10 games against teams with losing records
The Kings won three of four meetings last season against the Suns. Sacramento guard Buddy Hield shot 1-for-10 against Denver but had 30 points in a win over Phoenix in April. Rookie guard Bogdan Bogdanovich (ankle) might make his NBA debut Monday. Suns’ big man Tyson Chandler is averaging 11.5 rebounds while making 8 of 11 shots over his last two games. But he has been a rare bright spot for a team that just parted ways with its head coach. Sacramento is 5-2 ATS in its last seven against losing opponents, 13-6 ATS in its last 19 against the Pacific Division, and 5-0 ATS in its last five following a loss. The Suns are 0-4 ATS in their last four overall, 0-4 ATS in their last four against the Western Conference, 1-9 ATS in their last 10 against losing opponents, 1-6 ATS in the last seven meetings between the two teams, and 1-5 ATS in their last six at home against the Kings. Look for those trends to continue.