Kings vs. Magic: Sasha Vezenkov, Gary Harris injury news; playoff race; scouting reports

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The Kings paid a heavy price in the Western Conference playoff race after losing to the worst team in the NBA. Now, they have to find a way to bounce back against one of the hottest teams in the league.

The Kings will conclude a three-game road trip when they visit the Orlando Magic on Saturday at Kia Center in a rematch of their double-overtime thriller earlier this season.

The Kings (40-29) fell from sixth to eighth in the West following Thursday’s 109-102 loss to the Washington Wizards. They now find themselves in the play-in mix, a half-game behind the Dallas Mavericks and Phoenix Suns for the No. 6 seed.

The Magic (42-28) is coming off a 121-106 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans. Orlando has won five in a row and 10 of its last 12 to move up to fourth in the Eastern Conference.

The Kings beat the Magic 138-135 in double-overtime on Jan. 3 at Golden 1 Center in Sacramento. Paolo Banchero scored 43 points for Orlando. Malik Monk scored 37 for Sacramento. Domantas Sabonis posted 22 points, 23 rebounds, 12 assists. De’Aaron Fox was held to 15 points on 6-of-22 shooting, but he made the go-ahead basket in the final minute.

The Kings are listing forward Sasha Vezenkov as questionable for the third game in a row as he nears a return after missing the past 18 games with a grade-3 right ankle sprain. Kevin Huerter (shoulder) and Trey Lyles (knee) are out.

The Magic is listing Gary Harris as questionable due to a right plantar fascia strain.

Scouting Sacramento

Fox is averaging 26.6 points, 4.4 rebounds, 5.7 assists and 2.0 steals. He tied his career high with six steals against the Wizards.

Sabonis averages 20.0 points, 13.7 rebounds and 8.3 assists. He leads the league in rebounding, double-doubles (65) and triple-doubles (24). He has recorded 52 consecutive double-doubles, one shy of Kevin Love’s record for the longest single-season streak since the ABA-NBA merger.

Monk is averaging 16.0 points, 3.0 rebounds and 5.3 assists while shooting 45.1% from the field and 35.8% from 3-point range. Keegan Murray averages 14.7 points and 5.4 rebounds. Harrison Barnes is scoring 12.4 points per game while shooting 40.2% from beyond the arc.

Huerter (10.2 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.6 assists) and Lyles (7.1 points, 4.4 rebounds) are out due to injuries. Keon Ellis is starting in place of Huerter. The recent emergence of Ellis has coincided with a sudden surge in Sacramento’s defense. The Kings are No. 2 in defensive rating over the last nine games (106.4).

Scouting Orlando

Banchero, the No. 1 pick in the 2022 NBA draft, is averaging 22.6 points, 6.8 rebounds and 5.4 assists. He is shooting 46.7% from the field and 36.9% from 3-point range. He has hit 41% from beyond the arc over the past 10 games.

Franz Wagner averages 19.9 points, 5.4 rebounds and 3.9 assists. Jalen Suggs is averaging 12.5 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 1.4 steals while shooting 40.1% from 3-point range.

Cole Anthony (11.7 points, 4.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists), Wendell Carter Jr. (11.5 points, 6.9 rebounds) and Moritz Wagner (11.1 points, 4.4 rebounds) are also playing key roles for Orlando.

Status updates

The Magic has ruled Harris out for Saturday’s game against the Kings. Vezenkov has been ruled out for the Kings.

Kings at Magic

When: 4 p.m.

Where: Kia Center

TV: NBC Sports California

Radio: Sactown Sports 1140

Odds: Magic -3.5

Over/under: 215.5

Injury report

Kings: QUESTIONABLE — Sasha Vezenkov (ankle). OUT — Jordan Ford (G League); Kevin Huerter (shoulder); Mason Jones (G League); Trey Lyles (knee).

Magic: QUESTIONABLE — Gary Harris (plantar fascia).

Upcoming schedule

March 23 at Orlando Magic

March 25 vs. Philadelphia 76ers

March 26 vs. Dallas Mavericks

March 29 vs. Dallas Mavericks

March 31 vs. Utah Jazz