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Sacramento's First 11 Games

Even though it's too early to care, it's still tough not to notice that the Clippers, after three days of the season, are the only team in the Pacific Division without a win.  Of course, that's all about having relatively winnable games early, and Sacramento opened the season against Minnesota, widely regarded as one of the worst, if not the worst, team in the league.

Then I saw that the Kings are playing New Jersey tonight, the Nets coming off a 12 win season.  Then they play Cleveland (they lost this guy LeBron James).  Then Toronto (they lost this guy Chris Bosh).

In their first eleven games, the Kings play a mere three games against playoff teams from last season - and two of those three teams (the Cavs and Suns) lost all star game starters during the off season.  Among the eight non-playoff teams, they have Minnesota twice and New Jersey twice - those are the teams with the two worst records in the NBA last season, and they open the season with them, and play them four times in the first eleven!  It is about as soft a stretch of games as can possibly exist in an NBA season.

Of course, it will balance out eventually, and the Kings will have to make up for playing all these cushy games early with long stretches of really tough games later.  But it's a blessing nonetheless for such a young team to get a chance to build some confidence early in the season. 

By contrast, the Clippers open with a really tough schedule.  Seven of the Clippers' first nine opponents made the playoffs last season, and the other two are adding All Stars as opposed to losing them (David Lee in Golden State and Chris Paul in New Orleans).  Like the Kings, the Clippers are young and in need of a confidence boost.  Unfortunately, while the Kings could, if they play well, easily be 7 and 4 after eleven games, the Clippers, unless they play out of their minds, will be fortunate to win three of their first nine.

Oh well.  Nothing anyone can do about it.  It's just one of those things.