A while back Steve asked for citizens to provide some help for scouting on teams since it is impossible to follow every single team closely. I happen to be a fan, and leaguepasser, of the Kings. Here is my scouting report.
There will be times when the Kings offense more fluid than the Clippers. That is far from the truth, the Kings are only 2 points (101 compared to 99 for the Clippers) better in terms of Offensive Efficiency. The reason why they might look more fluid during the game is mainly because the team has many more ballhandlers than the Clippers do. Luther Head, Beno Udrih, and Tyreke Evans all will handle the ball heavily. Francisco Garcia will handle the ball a lot as well, and rightfully so as he might be the best decision maker on the team. Carl Landry is the type of player that typically gives the Clippers trouble over the past few years (undersized PF that has a great face up game). Demarcus Cousins has had some flashes this year, but has been very inconsistent.
Samuel Dalembert is the only above average defender on this team. The biggest strength the Kings have on defense is their length. Sometimes they will run a very long lineup of Evans (6'6''), Garcia (6'7''), Donte Green (6'10''), Cousins (6'11''), and Dalembert (7'). The team does not defend the pick and roll well, but the team does a good job on it's defensive rotations mainly due to their length. Demarcus Cousins is very prone to foul trouble. Landry is also a very poor defender. iF Kaman is playing the Clippers should be able to abuse the Kings down low fairly easily.
Griffin vs. Landry - Landry is not a better player than Griffin, but Landry has the great ability to get opponents into foul trouble. I expect Griffin to be doubled most of the game, but the key is Blake staying out of foul trouble on the defensive end.
Keys to a Clipper victory:
Limiting turnovers. The Kings are a very good team on the fast break. The fact that they have a lot of ballhandlers is mainly the reason why. Evans can be a one man fast break. The Clippers must also be weary of the transition 3, Omri Casspi hits (for some games instead of the word hits insert takes) 2-3 a game.
Defending Tyreke Evans. We all know Tyreke Evans is a great player. We also all know he is primarily a right handed player. The misconception is that he always drives right, this is not true but just seems that way. In reality Tyreke is one of the best ballhandlers in the game and can go either right or left. The thing is that Tyreke will finish with his right hand 99% of the time (I wanted to say all the time but two games ago he made two very difficult left handed layups). He will get to the rim at will, the Clipper just need to make sure they are defending the right handed finish. I also completely expect Tyreke to pull off his patented spin move and euro step multiple times in the game.
Funny player comparisons:
Kaman and Cousins. There are very few back to the basket big men in this league, and Cousins is one of them. Cousins does have the ability to turn his high IQ (he is an exceptional passer out of the post) into Mr. Flippy type hilarity. He will force things at times and make a bonehead play. I don't want to label him Mr. Flippy North, but like our very own, Cousins may turn the ball over at a very crucial time.
The Kings have a better record than the Clippers, but actually may be in more disarray underneath the surface. Often times the team looks like they are only playing for their own stats. There have been rumblings that the team chemistry is bad, but I don't know the truth so I won't go there. Still, it is sometimes hard to deny while watching them play selfishly.
Tyreke Evans has been playing with injuries since the start of the season. He has tweaked the same ankle probably 4 out of the 5 previous games.