National Basketball Association
Preview
Sacramento at Cleveland
When: 7:30 PM ET, Friday, January 30, 2015
Where: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, Ohio

While LeBron James is ailing, teammate Kyrie Irving is on a tear as he leads Cleveland into Friday's home game against slumping Sacramento. With James sidelined Wednesday with a sprained wrist, Irving did plenty to fill the void by collecting a career-high 55 points in a 99-94 win over Portland, making a franchise-record 11 3-pointers in the process. Irving has 93 points in his last two games while making 17-of-29 triples, elevating himself to a level alongside James on the Cavaliers' hierarchy.

"This is his night," James told reporters when asked of Irving, who actually missed his first seven shots before catching fire and lifting Cleveland to its eighth straight win, tied for its longest run this season. James is doubtful for Friday's tilt after also being absent when the Kings topped the Cavaliers 103-84 at home on Jan. 11. That stands as the last win for Sacramento, which has dropped seven in a row since, including a 119-102 setback at Toronto on Wednesday.

TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, CSN California (Sacramento), FSN Ohio (Cleveland)

ABOUT THE KINGS (16-28): Sacramento has endured a difficult road trip thus far, having one game postponed in New York due to Winter Storm Juno and giving up a boatload of points in a pair of losses. The Kings allowed 126 points - their second-highest total in regulation this season - at Golden State last Friday prior to the storm and then allowed the Raptors to shoot 51.2 percent, including 17-of-34 from beyond the arc, in Wednesday's setback. "Take pride in playing one-on-one defense, that'll solve a lot of problems," said center DeMarcus Cousins, who was limited to 13 points - his second-lowest total on the season - and committed nine turnovers against Toronto.

ABOUT THE CAVALIERS (27-20): While James works his way back and Irving continues his tear, Cleveland looks for the third member of its power trio - Kevin Love - to shake out of a slump. Love was 3-of-15 from the field in the win over Portland, is 6-of-26 over the last two games and stands at 34 percent over his last eight games. The three-time All-Star has failed to hit the 20-point mark in each of those eight contests, his longest such streak since the end of the 2009-10 season.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Cousins had 26 points, 13 rebounds, three blocks and a season high-tying four steals in the win over Cleveland earlier this month.

2. While Irving has been hot from the perimeter over his last two games, his teammates have made just 7-of-42 3-pointers.

3. Sacramento is 0-4 on the road against Eastern Conference teams.

PREDICTION: Cavaliers 105, Kings 95
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Sacramento 16-28 L7 10-15 6-13 2-3 14-25 3-6 12-18
Cleveland 27-20 W8 16-9 11-11 2-4 25-16 5-2 18-9
Last Meeting
Sacramento Cleveland
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
1/11/15 CLE 84 SAC 103 103 45 48.8 84 41 42.3
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Sacramento D. Cousins 26 47.8 4
Cleveland K. Love 25 47.6 2
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Sacramento D. Cousins 13 2 11
Cleveland T. Mozgov 12 4 8
Assists Player  
Sacramento D. Collison 7
Cleveland K. Irving 7
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Sacramento R. Gay 902 44.3 217
Cleveland K. Irving 1039 47.3 190
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Sacramento D. Cousins 429 102 327
Cleveland K. Love 500 103 397
Assists Player  
Sacramento D. Collison 265
Cleveland L. James 293
Quickchart Matchup
Sacramento Off vs  Cleveland Defense
101.7 Points For
99.8 Points Against
45.7 FG%
46.4 FG%
44.7 Reb
41.1 Reb
Cleveland Off vs  Sacramento Defense
101.7 Points For
104.6 Points Against
45.2 FG%
45.0 FG%
41.1 Reb
39.9 Reb