photo from newsday.com: Oklahoma City Thunder center Steven Adams (12) shoots between Sacramento Kings’ Harrison Barnes (40), Kent Bazemore (26), Buddy Hield (24) and Yogi Ferrell (3) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020, in Oklahoma City
By Jeremiah Salmonson
The Sacramento Kings were going into Oklahoma City feeling good. They were on a three-game winning streak and poised to compete against a surprisingly upstart Oklahoma City Thunder team. However, the Kings would be without starting guard De’Aaron Fox. Fox has been dealing with a myriad of nagging injuries and the abdominal discomfort held him out of action on Thursday night. The tip-off was set for 5 PM PST in Oklahoma City.
The first half went just the way the Kings wanted it. The Kings shot 47.8% from the field and a great 41.2% from deep. The Kings scored 27 in the first and 34 in the second compared to 25 and 25 respectively from the Thunder. The Kings would lead by 11 at 61-50 going into the half.
The Thunder scored 45.7% from the field in the first half shooting 35.3% from deep. The Kings received stellar play in the first half from Harry Giles as he scored 15 points in 12 minutes. The only issue is that Harry picked up three fouls in the half. Danillo Gallinari scored 12 points to lead the Thunder in the first half.
In the second half, things began to crumble. The King’s shot-making evaporated late in the third and the Thunder went on a long 13-0 run. The Kings kept the Thunder from taking a dominant lead but the 11 point lead they took into the second half was gone.
One of the worst aspects of this was what happened next. The Kings got themselves into the penalty in just over two minutes and that would prove to be the difference in the game. The Thunder scored 31 points in both the third and fourth quarters to down the Kings 112-108. The Kings scored 21 and 26 in the third and fourth quarters respectively which was not enough to overtake the resurgence of the Thunder.
Leading the way for the Thunder in victory was Danillo Gallinari who had 24 points followed by Shae Gilgeous-Alexander who had 20 points. For the Kings, Harrison Barnes led the way with 21 points followed by an outstanding performance by Harry Giles who finished with 19 points.
Up Next: The Kings fly to Memphis to take on the formidable but struggling Memphis Grizzlies tomorrow. Tip-off is set for 5 PM PST in Memphis.