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Sacramento Kings at Boston Celtics - Summer League Championship Game

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The Celtics and Kings vie for the Summer League Championship in a battle of unbeaten teams.

2021 Las Vegas Summer League - Memphis Grizzlies v Sacramento Kings Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images

Two undefeated teams, the Celtics and the Kings, meet in the Summer League championship game. The Timberwolves and Pelicans were also a perfect 4 and 0 in Las Vegas but the Celtics and Kings had larger differentials and so will play in the championship game. The Celtics last played on Saturday while the Kings last played on Sunday.

The Celtics were the superior team through the first 4 games. They had a +21 point differential while the Kings had a +13.8 differential. The Celtics averaged 100 points per game while the Kings averaged 86.3points per game. The Celtics shot 48.1% from the field and 40.3% from beyond the arc, while the Kings shot 43% from the field and 30.6% from beyond the arc.

The Celtics have averaged 25.5 assists per game while the Kings have averaged 17 assists per game. The Celtics have pulled down 43.3 rebounds per game while the Kings have averaged 38 rebounds per game. The Kings played 2 games in the California Classic Summer League before coming to Las Vegas for 4 games. The Celtics have played in just the 4 Las Vegas Summer League games.

The Celtics were without Payton Pritchard for their game against the 76ers, which they won 100-80, even without him. Pritchard posted that he was on his way back to Vegas for the championship game, but head coach Joe Mazzulla stated that he wasn’t certain whether Pritchard would play or not. Pritchard has proved himself in the 3 games he played and the Celtics may not want to risk an injury in this game. But, I have a feeling that if Pritchard has any say in the matter, he will be playing in this game.

Yam Madar also missed the game against the 76ers with a groin injury. He participated in a light practice on Monday and will be a game time decision for this game. One of the Kings key players, Chimezie Metu, is suspended for this game after he punched the Mavericks’ Eugene Omoruyi in the head after Omoruyi committed a flagrant 2 foul.

The starting lineups are based on the starters for both teams in games so far. I’m guessing that Emanuel Terry will take Metu’s place in the starting lineup. I’m hoping to see Payton Pritchard starting for the Celtics, but if he doesn’t play, I would guess that either Yam Madar or Yuhann Begarin will get the start in his place.

Probable Starters
Carsen Edwards 5’11” G
Payton Pritchard 6’2” G
Romeo Langford 6’4” G
Aaron Nesmith 6’6” F
Bruno Fernando 6’9” F

The Rest of the Roster
Juhann Begarin 6’5” G
Sam Hauser 6’8” F
Aric Holman 6’9” C
Dedric Lawson 6’7” F
KJ Lawson 6’7” F
Zach Auguste 6’10” C
Arnas Velicka 6’6” G

Other
Payton Pritchard (personal) game time decision
Yam Madar (groin) game time decision

Head Coach - Joe Mazzulla

Probable Starters
Davion Mitchell 6’2” G
Jahmi’us Ramsey 6’2” G
Louis King 6’7” F
Emanuel Terry 6’9” F
Neemias Queta 7’0” C

The Rest of the Roster
Robert Woodard II 6’7” F
Ade Murkey 6’5” G
Marcus Graves 6’1” G
DJ Steward 6’2” G
Damien Jefferson 6’5” F
Matt Coleman III 6’2” G
Johnathan Williams 6’9” F
Alex Antetokounmpo 6’8” F
Princepal Singh 6’9” F

Other
Chimezie Metu (suspended) out

Head Coach - Jesse Mermuys

Key Matchups
Carsen Edwards vs Davion Mitchell
Mitchell was the Kings’ 9th pick in the 2021 draft. He was the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and the Naismith DPOY as a Junior at Baylor and will try to make it tough for the Celtics guards to score. He is averaging 11.3 points, 1.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 1 steal per game in Summer League.

Payton Pritchard vs Jahmi’us Ramsey
Ramsey was the 43rd pick in the 2020 draft and played in 13 games for the Kings last season. He is averaging 16.3 poionts, 2.3 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1.1 steals per game. If Pritchard doesn’t play, then either Madar or Begarin will be tasked with slowing Ramsey down. Ramsey has also been playing good defense in Summer League and with Mitchell will slow the Celtics guards down.

Honorable Mention
Romeo Langford vs Louis King
King was undrafted in 2019 and signed a 2-way contract with the Pistons for the 2019-20 season. He played in the G-League last season and in May signed a 2-way contract with the Kings. He is averaging 13 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3 assists and 2.8 steals per game in Las Vegas. This should be a good matchup.

Keys to the Game
The Celtics need to continue to play as a team and trust each other. If Pritchard doesn’t play they will each need to step up their play to make up for his scoring. They need to continue to move the ball and find the open man and not be tempted to play hero ball. They can’t get complacent because Metu is out. They need everyone to play hard and give it their all if they want to win this championship.