Dallas - Sacremento
There are a variety of different reasons for making a trade in the NBA, from the off-season move (re-building), the deadline-beater (fingers crossed) to the unhappy player (soon-to-be Omer Asik).
The fourth variety is the ‘that experiment failed’ move, and six weeks into the new campaign is just about the right time to kick start that slew of switches. Hence why the Sacramento Kings could take on a fresh look on Monday ahead of their home clash with the Dallas Mavericks.
It comes as the Toronto Raptors write off the idea that Rudy Gay could be a franchise star while the Kings accept their current roster can never be anything but mediocre. The proposed deal would see Gay come south in exchange for Greveis Vasquez (a very under-rated point guard), John Salmons and two throw-ins.
Even if Canada’s finest make some future moves (likely), it spells another season in the wasteland for the Raps. For the Kings, it is a gamble that the impact of DeMarcus Cousins and rookie Ben McLemore will be complemented, not hindered, by a ball hog like Gay. That, at first look, is a long shot at best.
As it stands, Sacramento figures to be short-handed against the Mavericks, who come in with three straight wins, including an overtime defeat of Portland on Saturday. Back Dallas on the handicap of -4.5 at 1.88. What happens to the Kings beyond that is anyone’s guess but when you’re in the bottom two in the Western Conference and already looking like a Lottery team, anything’s worth a shot.
Washington – Denver
Following a 4-6 start that had some wondering if they were regressing, the Denver Nuggets have won eight of their last ten and resemble the force they were under George Karl last term. New coach Brian Shaw now has his team out-scoring opponents by an average of 2.7 points and they’re 3-2 on their current road trip with that differential up to +7.2.
However, there’s been a pattern of struggles in the first quarters before rallying back and that could be a factor to watch when they visit the Washington Wizards. But Denver’s bench is putting up 45.3 points per night, compared with their opponents whose second unit is adding a league-last 19.3. And even though Washington has won seven of their last ten, the Nuggets depth gives them the upper hand over 48 minutes.
Take Dallas on the handicap at 1.88 against Sacramento
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