National Basketball Association
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               === Hawks, Kings clash in California's capital ===
 (Sports  Network) - The Atlanta Hawks complete a four-game, West-Coast trip on
 Friday night when they visit the Sacramento Kings at the Sleep Train Arena.
 The  Hawks have  gone  1-2 on  this  sojourn  to the  other  coast. They  lost
 Wednesday  night to  the Golden State Warriors, 92-88, without star big man Al
 Horford, who missed the game with a stomach illness.
 Lou  Williams, the  Hawks' fourth-leading scorer, posted nine of his 18 points
 Wednesday  in  the final  1:13, but  it wasn't quite  enough. Atlanta lost its
 third in the last four games.
 "When  you  have guys go down  that bring that  much to the table it's tough,"
 said  Williams. "All the other guys stepped up and we had a chance to win, but
 this  was  just one of those  games that came down  to two or three plays that
 went the other way."
 Horford  is listed as "day-to-day" and so is reserve point guard Devin Harris,
 who also missed the game against the Warriors with an illness.
 The  Hawks lead  the NBA in forcing  turnovers (18.6 ppg) and will be happy to
 head  home after the  tilt with the Kings. They play seven of their next eight
 in Atlanta.
 The  Kings, who  have lost three straight,  will get their best player back on
 Wednesday. DeMarcus Cousins served his two-game suspension for confronting San
 Antonio Spurs announcer Sean Elliot in a hostile manner.
 Cousins  isn't  the only player returning  to the Kings' lineup. Isaiah Thomas
 missed  Tuesday's loss  to the Portland Trail Blazers for personal reasons and
 reserve Francisco Garcia was also absent with the flu.
 Head coach Keith Smart was just excited to get some bodies back.
 "It  was a regular basketball team again, and we had a chance to do some great
 work  today - excellent film work," Smart said after Thursday's practice. "I'm
 so excited, I'm out of breath."
 Smart  emphasized  defense in the  preseason and  the results have been solid.
 They  ranked  fifth in the  NBA in forcing turnovers  and sixth in steals. The
 Kings  still rank in the bottom-third of the league in opposition scoring, but
 the offense has been shaky.
 Sacramento  is 25th  in the  NBA in  scoring, despite  five players  averaging
 double-figures.  The  bench has  been productive, led  by Marcs Thornton (14.5
 ppg)  and even Jimmer Fredette (8.0 ppg). Fredette is shooting a blistering 57
 percent from the floor.
 Atlanta  has owned  this matchup in recent history, winning eight straight and
 nine  of  the last 10.  The Hawks have  won four in  a row in Sacramento after
 losing the previous eight in California's capital city.
 11/16 10:37:36 ET

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