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NBA Preview from The Sports Network

Monday, December 15th (All times eastern)

Minnesota Timberwolves (4-19) at Sacramento Kings (6-18), 10:30 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The struggling Sacramento Kings will take to the floor with a new coach Monday as they welcome the Minnesota Timberwolves to ARCO Arena.

The Kings fired head coach Reggie Theus this afternoon and replaced him on an interim basis with assistant Kenny Natt. Theus is already the sixth NBA coach to be fired this season.

The reeling Wolves, who lost their ninth straight game Sunday in Los Angeles when Kobe Bryant scored 26 points, leading the Lakers to a 98-86 victory over Minnesota at Staples Center, are one of the teams who already replaced their mentor.

Al Jefferson had 20 points and 13 rebounds to pace the Timberwolves, who dropped their fourth straight since Kevin McHale stepped down from the front office and took over as head coach. Craig Smith added 18 points and eight rebounds, while Ryan Gomes had 13 points in the loss.

The Timberwolves, who are 2-10 on the road this season, haven't dropped 10 straight since the 1993-94 season.

Sacramento, meanwhile, lost for the 10th time in 11 games under Theus on Saturday when Al Harrington scored 33 points, and the New York Knicks won back-to-back games for the first time in nearly a month with a 114-90 blowout of the Kings at ARCO Arena.

John Salmons had 14 points for the Kings, who have dropped nine of 10 in Sacramento and fell to 4-9 at home. Beno Udrih had 13 points, while rookie Jason Thompson tallied 12 points and 11 rebounds. Francisco Garcia scored 12 in defeat.

These two teams have already met twice this season. The T-Wolves defeated the Kings 98-96 in their season opener at the Target Center while Sacramento returned the favor on November 7, beating Minnesota 121-109 at home.

12/15 14:59:16 ET

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