By Charlie O. Mallonee
The Sacramento Kings trailed the LA Lakers 99-97 with 5.5 seconds to go in the game on Friday night at Staples Center. After designing a play during a timeout, most of the crowd expected the ball to go to Bogdan Bogdanovic in order for “Bogi” to attempt a game-winning 3-point shot. Instead, the inbounds pass went to Harrison Barnes who slipped or was tripped on his way to the bucket.
Barnes went up in the air and was met head-on by Anthony Davis who blocked his potential layup. There was a lot of body contact, but because Barnes was out of control from the slip (or trip) no foul was called. Time expired and the Kings (4-7) had lost the game by two points.
I am now going to interject an editorial opinion. If the play had been the other way around with Davis driving on the hoop, slipping and Barnes making contact, a foul would have been called and Davis would have gone to the line to shoot two free throws. That is the inequity of officiating in the NBA. If you are a superstar and playing on your home court, the calls will always go your way. It is a major flaw that needs to be fixed but don’t hold your breath. No changes are coming anytime soon.
Spotlight on the Lakers (10-2)
- LeBron James scored a game-high 29 points and made it a double-double game by dishing out 11 assists. He also played a game-high 38 minutes and 40 seconds. Not bad for an old guy.
- Anthony Davis added 17 points and blocked four shots. His most important blocked shot came at the end of the game.
- Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 16 points in just over 24 minutes of playing time. He went 3-for-5 from 3-point range.
- Kyle Kuzma came off the bench to put up 13 points and hauling in five rebounds.
- The Lakers outscored the Kings in the paint 42-36.
- LA also won the battle of 2nd Chance Points 15-5.
Focus on the Kings
- Buddy Hield led the Kings scoring attack with 21 points. Hield shot 6-for-15 from the floor. All six of his baskets were 3-pointers.
- Bogdan Bogdanovic played almost 37 minutes on Friday night. He scored 18 points shooting 7-for-13 from the floor.
- Richaun Holmes had a big game on offense and defense. Holmes scored 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds against the Lakers.
The Kings will host the Boston Celtics at the Golden 1 Center on Sunday at 12:30 PM.
The Lakers host the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday.