Sacramento Kings: The mountain is tall
26 Jan 2014, 02:00 IST
Just a few thoughts on last night’s 116-111 loss to the Indiana Pacers. as I was only able to catch the final 4 minutes of the fourth and overtime.
- I hate to say it but these are the exact type of games a 15-27 team loses and a 34-8 team wins. The Pacers weathered a shooting onslaught by Marcus Thornton (WTF, I know) and Isaiah Thomas, before coming up with the necessary plays from four of their five starters to win the game. The Kings have had some recent success against top teams in the league (wins against the Heat and Blazers), but on a night when they were missing DeMarcus Cousins and Rudy Gay, they did not have the horses to close.
- IT shot a lot, I know, and it wasn’t particularly pretty (13-31), but he sure stepped up to the plate in my eyes. With no one who could really create their own shot on the floor tonight, Isaiah shouldered the burden and played lead dog against the top defense, by far, in the league. When he hit that 3 to put the Kings up 100-97 with a minute and a half left, I thought the Kings would be able to hold on.
- Marcus Thornton rose from the ashes last night, but could sadly only muster one shot in the final nine minutes of the game I saw. It left Isaiah as the only King capable of scoring (the two combined for 80 of the teams 111), and short people can only do so much against the length the Pacers have on the court.
- Derrick Williams sure had a rough end to the game. He missed 3 of 4 free throws late in the fourth that could have iced the game, and then he had the foul on Paul George that allowed George to complete a four point play with 15 seconds left. The call was no doubt ticky tack, especially when you know why the Kings are fouling, to prevent a three that would put the game within one. I don’t quite understand how you can call that continuation because George was barely around the screen and not in the shooting motion yet (he took another step, maybe two before he shot), but its the NBA and that’s what they call so I blame Thrilly D nonetheless. Wrap him up there, don’t even let him get off the jumper, it’s simple defensive basketball. Sometimes I wonder if all these defensive mishaps will kill Mike Malone before the season is over.
- Williams also sealed the loss in overtime, as he decided to go one on three, including taking Roy Hibbert on at the rim, after a steal at half-court and subsequently attempted a wild, contorting flip shot layup that George just grabbed from his hands. It was just a dumb play in a situation that desperately called for a calm, smart play
Next game is home vs. the Nuggets on Sunday.