Zach Randolph figures to become the 39th player in NBA history to reach 10,000 career rebounds on Wednesday, when the Sacramento Kings visit the Brooklyn Nets. Randolph is one board away from the milestone after leading the Kings to a 101-95 victory over Philadelphia on Tuesday.
Randolph scored 27 points on 12-of-19 shooting and also corralled five rebounds against Philadelphia, and is proving he has plenty of energy left in the tank at age 36. “I feel good. Like I had said in the beginning of the season, I feel like I’m in my prime,” Randolph told reporters. “My mindset and what I believe in my heart - so I’m going to go out and play like it every game and give it the best I can give.” The Nets have dropped three consecutive games, and nobody was happy with the team’s performance in Sunday’s 109-97 loss to Indiana. “I just think they had a higher level of physicality and execution, and any time a good team has that, it’s going to be hard to overcome,” Brooklyn point guard Spencer Dinwiddie told reporters. “I just think that our (competition) level isn’t as high as it should be.”
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN California (Sacramento), YES (Brooklyn)
ABOUT THE KINGS (10-20): Sacramento’s bench produced 48 points on Tuesday as backup guards Buddy Hield (24 points) and Frank Mason III (16 on 7-of-9 shooting) both produced strong performances. Hield’s effort was his best since scoring a season-high 27 points against the Los Angeles Clippers on Nov. 25, while the outing represented a season best for Mason - a rookie from Kansas. “Another guy that’s unheralded, Frank has been playing great,” veteran guard Garrett Temple told reporters after the victory. “He had a (heck) of a game for us. He finished the game out with a big 16 points.”
ABOUT THE NETS (11-18): Newcomer Jahlil Okafor is trying to work himself into true game shape after being an outcast in Philadelphia prior to the recent trade. The 22-year-old center ripped the 76ers, telling reporters, “I’m happy I’m here with the actual NBA coaching staff that’s taking care of me every day. When I was in Philly, I was figuring it out on my own,” but Brooklyn coach Kenny Atkinson also is aware that work needs to be done. “We need to help him get in better condition, that is first off,” Atkinson told reporters. “We need to integrate him more into the system. I think it is going to take some time.”
1. The Kings recorded a 122-105 victory last season to halt a seven-game road losing streak against the Nets.
2. Sacramento PG George Hill (strep throat) sat out versus the 76ers but expects to play on Wednesday.
3. Brooklyn swingman Allen Crabbe was 4-for-6 from 3-point range in the loss to Indiana after going 4-for-21 over his previous two contests.
PREDICTION: Nets 109, Kings 104