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|NBLxNBA 2019: Melbourne United vs Sacramento Kings|
|Venue: Golden 1 Center, Sacramento|
|Match time: Fulltime|
The Sacramento Kings have rounded out preparations for their NBA season, with a dominant second half kicking them well clear of a gallant Melbourne United in the final NBLxNBA game.
The NBLxNBA tour for 2019 will conclude on Thursday afternoon as Melbourne United continue the search for an Australian victory when they take on the Sacramento Kings. Join The Roar for live scores and coverage from 1pm (AEDT).
Sacramento are a team who have been in rebuilding move and are slowly on the improve, but NBA playoffs probably look something of a stretch for them this year, even if they did come away with a victory over the Utah Jazz in their last pre-season game.
Of course, pre-season games must be taken with a grain of salt at all times, and competition-wise, they are going to get a really good hit out here against Melbourne.
Dean Vickerman’s Australian outfit might have started their NBL season back home with something of a shock loss to the South East Melbourne Phoenix, but looked much-improved during their loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday.
They have a distinctive advantage of playing two games against NBA sides, and after leading through the first half against the Clippers, they should be better equiped to deal with NBA rules in this one, including the 48-minute game, as opposed to their usual 40-minute game.
What we do know ahead of this game though is that United will need to be excellent on the defensive end of the court to stop this turning into a high-scoring blitz.
Sacramento are widely regarded as one of the sides who are likely to be exciting on the offensive end this year, with Bogdan Bogdanovic and the catch-and-shoot weapon Buddy Heild running things.
While Melo Trimble and Chris Goulding are solid in offence as well, if they can’t get their defence right, backed up by Shawn Long in the paint, they may not stand much of a chance here.
However, Goulding’s defence has come on in leaps and bounds, and it’s difficult to write off United given their first half against the stronger Clippers.
United are a red-hot chance to claim the first NBL victory in the history of these games. In fact, I’ll go as far as to say they will.
United by 2.
Be sure to join us here on The Roar for live coverage of this NBLxNBA match from 1pm (AEDT), and don’t forget to add a comment in the section below.
Tip-off: 1pm (AEDT)
Venue: Golden 1 Center, Sacramento
Online: Live, SBS on Demand
Betting: Kings N/A, United $34
Melbourne United (expected)
Point guard: Melo Trimble
Shooting guard: Chris Goulding
Small forward: Mitch McCaron
Power forward: Anthony Brown
Centre: Shawn Long
Bench: Jo Lual-Acuil Jr, Tohi Smith-Milner, Alex Pledger, Shea Ili, Dillon Stith, Quincy Miller, Sam Short
Point guard: Bogdan Bogdanovic
Shooting guard: Buddy Hield
Small forward: Harrison Barnes
Point forward: Marvin Bagley
Centre: Dewayne Dedmon
Bench: Nemanja Bjelica, Yogi Ferrell, De’Aron Fox, Wenyen Gabriel, Kyle Guy, Richuan Holmes, Justin James, Cory Joseph, Tyler Lydon, Isaiah Pineiro, Caleb Swanigan, Tyler Ulis