Kings’ Playoff Secret Weapon Revealed – It’s Not Who You Think

The Sacramento Kings have finally snapped their 16-season playoff drought and clinched the third seed in the Western Conference with a 48-34 record. They now prepare for a matchup with the defending champion Golden State Warriors, being the all-important higher seed. The higher seed will give the Kings home-court advantage, a huge factor given the Warriors’ 11-30 record on the road this season. The Kings will have a max of four opportunities at the Golden 1 Center to light the beam in the first round of the 2023 NBA Playoffs.

A number of factors will play a huge role in determining who moves on between the Kings and Warriors. The sole focus of the series will be on the Warriors’ Stephen Curry; albeit Golden State’s struggles in the regular season, they will always have a chance to win it all as long as they have the greatest shooter of all time. The other half of the Splash Brothers, Klay Thompson, and the polarizing Draymond Green will work alongside role players Jordan Poole, Kevon Looney, Donte Divincenzo and the return of Andrew Wiggins in joining Curry in an upset bid of the Kings.

Meanwhile, the Kings have been led by the duo of De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis in returning to the NBA Playoffs, and will be the main scorers for this Sacramento team. They will also look to guards Kevin Huerter and Malik Monk for some buckets, while Harrison Barnes and Davion Mitchell aim to continue their play as key assets on both sides of the floor. However, if the Kings are going to win this series, none of these players will be the primary reason. There is one key X-factor for the Kings in this first-round series. So, what is the Kings X-factor against the Warriors?

Keegan Murray is the Kings’ X-factor in the first-round matchup against the Warriors in the 2023 NBA Playoffs.

*Stats via StatMuse

Keegan Murray: X-Factor Against Warriors

The No. 4 overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, Keegan Murray had high expectations coming into Sacramento. On Wednesday, March 29th, Murray cemented why he had such high expectations, all the while eclipsing any standard the Kings could have asked from him in his rookie season.

In a game against the Portland Trailblazers, Murray made his 188th 3-pointer on his 462nd attempt of the season, a scorching 3-point percentage of 40.7%. More importantly, this shot made him the NBA single-season rookie holder for most made threes. He surpassed then Utah Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell, who set the record with 187 in the 2017-2018 season. Coincidentally, Murray secured the record in the same game the Kings clinched the playoffs. It is simply a metaphor for the intrinsic success between the Kings and Murray.

In the first round against the Warriors, this success will again be linked. The stats are staggering when Murray is hitting his three-point shots, as the Kings find ways to win those games. This season, the Kings are 16-5 when Murray has made four or more three-pointers. Even more impressively, the Kings are 10-1 in games that Murray has made five or more. These are two big totals, but it shows a clear correlation between Murray’s output and the Kings success.

Besides Murray’s ability to hit the three and how it helps the Kings win, he has made incredible strides on the defensive side of the ball during his rookie season. Head Coach Mike Brown recently commented on Murray’s keen ability to steal without gambling, and how his overall consistency on that side of the floor has improved game over game. Heading into the playoffs, Murray is shooting the ball lights out and proving his worth on defense.

Against the Warriors, if Murray plays like he can, the Kings should find success. Murray will be a matchup nightmare for the Warriors, as Wiggins will most likely get the first crack at him. Wiggins is far from being in NBA condition, and Murray will look to exploit this matchup.

In general, Murray will never have much attention paid to him due to emphasis that Fox and Sabonis will command, especially on a Warriors team that really struggles on defense. Fox and Sabonis will be hounding the small Warriors in the paint all series long, creating plenty of space on the perimeter. This is where Murray can take advantage and drill those three-point shots he has been hitting all season long.

The first-round matchup between the Kings and the Warriors is sure to be one of the more entertaining first-rounds of the NBA Playoffs. If the Sacramento Kings are to dethrone the defending champion Golden State Warriors, Keegan Murray will be the X-factor in the series.

Related Posts

Eternal Wisdom: Mavs Star Luka Doncic Shares Unforgettable Advice from Kobe Bryant

Legendary Los Angeles Lakers player Kobe Bryant imparted some insight to Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic. Luka Doncic, the Dallas Mavericks’ best player, recently appeared on The Old Man and The Three Podcast with JJ Redick, his former partner. Among …

Read more

PHOTO DAY: Lakers Gather for Relaxed Photoshoot, Capturing Full Squad in Attendance

The Lakers had a photoshoot for their new team profile, and all the members were present in full attendance. They took pictures together in a very relaxed manner

Read more

Dwyane Wade Rings in 42nd Birthday with Luxurious Gift to Himself: Mercedes-Maybach S-Class

Power couple Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union have given each other a lot of cars while they’ve been together. However, Wade, who had just turned 40, chose to do things himself and ordered a Mercedes-Maybach S-Class. Gabrielle Union gave Dwyane Wade a …

Read more

Find Your Relax: Japanese Star Rui Hachimura Embraces Tranquility on a Yacht, Amidst the Vastness of the Sea

Lеts cҺιll bае! Jаρа𝚗еsе stаɾ Ruι HаcҺιmuɾа flσаt ι𝚗 tҺе mιԀԀlе σf tҺе sеа wιtҺ а yаcҺt . . . . . Tylеɾ Hеɾɾσ а𝚗Ԁ Һιs fιа𝚗céе аɾе еcstаtιc 𝚗еw ρаɾе𝚗ts, а𝚗Ԁ tҺеy’ɾе е𝚗jσyι𝚗ɡ lιfе ι𝚗 tҺеιɾ $10.5 mιllισ𝚗 mа𝚗sισ𝚗. Tylеɾ Hеɾɾσ’s $10.5 mιllισ𝚗 mа𝚗sισ𝚗 ι𝚗 Pι𝚗еcɾеst, …

Read more

LeBron James’ Luxurious Retreat at Calvi Resort: Arriving in Style on a $400 Million Private Jet

Basketball superstar LeBron James, known as one of the greatest players in NBA history and currently playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, recently enjoyed a vacation at the Calvi resort in Corsica . He spent time on a luxury yacht owned by U2 singer Bono …

Read more

LeBron James’ Trainer Marvels at Angel Reese’s WNBA Draft Workout, Showcasing Unseen Talent from LSU Days

A glimpse into Angel Reese’s WNBA Draft preparations in New York City with renowned basketball trainer Chris Brickley was shown. Days after seeking the assistance of Victor Wembanyama’s trainer, she once again dazzled LeBron James’s previous coach during …

Read more

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *