KINGS AT HORNETS, 1 p.m. ET

TV: League Pass

  • Hornets coach Monty Williams believes the key to beating the Kings is limiting their easy points around the basket, with a focus on preventing center DeMarcus Cousins from catching the ball in good positions,watching point guard Tyreke Evans in transition and preventing Isiaiah Thomas from penetrating.  “You have to keep them out of the paint,” Williams said. “I think they’re fourth in the league in paint points, so you have to play really solid defense to make sure that you can get good offense. You don’t want to take the ball out of the net every time.” New Orleans gave up 116 points to Golden State on Saturday , losing for only the second time in eight games. 
  • Hornets guard Brian Roberts, who missed the Golden State game with a sprained ankle, will play today. Williams said Roberts would get minutes at backup point guard behind Greivis Vasquez, who had 15 assists against Golden State.  Roberts averages 6.6 points and 2.2 assists.
  • Expected Hornets starters: (F)Al-Farouq Aminu; (F) Anthony Davis; (C) Robin Lopez; (G) Eric Gordon; (G) Vasquez
  • The Kings were hit with the news overnight that they will move to Seattle next season, but coach Keith Smart said it would not be a distraction for the game. “It’s a blow, and it’s a tough thing for the people in our organization, but my job as a coach and the job of our players is pretty much going to go on the same. They will take shots, make mistakes and make great plays. It will only come up if you ask them about it.”
  • Former Hornets guard Marcus Thornton, the Kings’ leading scorer last season, has been up and down since Smart moved him to the bench. His last two games have been typical: two points on 1 of 6 shooting in an 85-69 loss to the Grizzlies on Friday and 18 points on 6 of 11 shooting in a 97-93 win against the Bobcats on Saturday. Thornton averages 12.4 points, a dropoff from the 18.7 he averaged in 2011-12.
  • Expected Kings starters: (F) John Salmons, (F) Jason Thompson, (C) Cousins, (G) Evans, (G) Thomas

– Guerry Smith

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