Lakers at Sacramento Kings preview

The Lakers look to bounce back from a loss to Dallas Mavericks with a win over the Sacramento Kings

The Lakers (21-59) finish the season with a two-game set against the Kings (27-53), starting on Monday night in Sacramento.

Wesley Johnson won't play after suffering an ankle injury on Sunday. Guard Dwight Buycks broke his hand, just as his 10-day contract expired.

Jeremy Lin (knee), Wayne Ellington (shoulder), Nick Young (knee), Ronnie Price (elbow), Kobe Bryant (shoulder) and Julius Randle (knee) are all done for the season.

The Lakers visit Sacramento on the second night of a back-to-back, with two guards and no small forwards. Ryan Kelly will have to fill in at the three and possibly even backup guard.

The Kings have shut down DeMarcus Cousins (foot) and Rudy Gay (concussion), while Darren Collison (hip) and Eric Moreland (shoulder) are also out. Reggie Evans (thumb) is questionable.

Key matchup

Second-year point guard Ray McCallum has been pressed into service, averaging 11.9 points on 47.6% shooting, with 4.1 assists a game through seven games in April.

The Lakers will also have to slow guard Ben McLemore who has scored 18.7 points a game over the Kings' past three.

Clarkson will guard McCallum and Brown will draw McLemore. Brown would likely back up Clarkson at the point, but then who takes Brown's minutes at two guard?


Jason Thompson started for Cousin on Sunday. Derrick Williams and Omri Casspi were the starting small forwards.

Casspi had a big game in the team's 122-111 loss to the Denver Nuggets, scoring 22 points with seven rebounds and seven assists.

Kelly will start out of position at the three, where he generally struggled as Coach Byron Scott experimented throughout the season.

The second-year Duke product has shown he is a much better contributor at power forward, but the Lakers are clearly desperate given the volume of injuries.

If small forward was a challenge for Kelly, how will he fare at guard? Or do Clarkson and Brown just play 48 minutes?

Can the Lakers sign a third guard in time for Monday's game? That may not be likely.


The short-handed Kings should be able to outlast the even-more-short-handed Lakers.

Email Eric Pincus at Pincus at and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times