Kings miss 40 wins by just five points!

Photo/graphic: @NBCS

by Charlie O. Mallonee

The Sacramento Kings went to Portland on Wednesday night with the opportunity win their 40th game of the 2018-19 season which would have been the first time a Kings team had recorded 40 wins since 2005-06. Much to the chagrin of the multitude of Kings fans, the 40th win did not happen.

Portland decided to rest all of their starters and most of their key second team players. That gave the Kings a significant advantage in their quest to reach 40 wins.

A Record-Setting First Half

Buddy Hield hits his 600th 3-pointer in 3 seasons @ NBCS

The Kings started the game on fire. They scored a franchise record 87 points in the first half falling just three points short of tying the NBA record for the most points scored in the opening 24 minutes of an NBA game. They shot an incredible 66.7-percent (32/48) from the field. They hit 13-of-20 (65%) of their 3-point shots.

De’Aaron Fox scored 17 points. Rookie Marvin Bagley III scored 16 points in just over 14-minutes on the floor. Harrison Barnes, Nemanja Bjelica and Bogdan Bogdanovic all scored 10 points each in the first half.

The Kings went to the locker room at halftime with an 87-62 lead. It appeared that everything was going Sacramento’s way and that win number 40 was only 24 minutes away.

Coach Joerger’s Big Decision

Maybe that wasn’t a good idea Photo: @NBCS

Head coach Dave Joerger decided that all of his starters would not play in the second half of the game on Wednesday night. That in part may have been a tribute to the job well done by the starters and giving a well-deserved opportunity to the second team and reserves. The problem is the plan did not work.

The Trail Blazers outscored the Kings 36-26 in the third quarter and cut the Kings lead to 15 points. As the Kings went to the fourth period, you might have expected Joerger to have reinserted Hield and Fox to reenergize his team’s scoring attack. He did not do that.

Joerger chose to stay with his reserves and that decision did not go well for the team.

The Final Quarter

Portland scored 38 points in the fourth quarter while the Kings only managed to put 18 points in the book. Anfernee Simons led the Trail Blazers scoring attack with 12 points. Frank Mason scored 10 for the Kings.

When the final buzzer sounded, the Trail Blazers had defeated the Kings 136-131.

Top Performers


  • Anfernee Simons led all scorers with 37 points.
  • Former Kings player Skal Labissiere put up 27 points against his old mates. Skal made it a double-double by grabbing 15 rebounds.
  • Jake Layman, Meyers Leonard, and Gary Trent, Jr. all scored 19 points each in the contest.


  • The Kings leading scorer was Marvin Bagley III with 20 points and nine rebounds. The rookie has had an incredible season.
  • De’Aaron Fox and Yogi Ferrell scored 17 points each.
  • Bogdan Bogdanovic and Frank Mason III both scored 15 points in the game.

One Big Question to Ask

In his exit interview, this reporter thinks that head coach Dave Joerger needs to be asked why he did not do more to get win number 40 on Wednesday night. The psychological lift for the team and fans of crossing over into the 40 win plateau would have been huge. Joerger needs to be held accountable for letting that opportunity get away.

In the meantime, the NBA Draft is 72 days away.

Lakers ruin the Kings’ Saturday night, winning game in Sacramento 101-86


By Charlie O. Mallonee

SACRAMENTO — The Kings lost the second game of a back-to-back set to the Los Angeles Lakers 101-86 on Saturday night. The loss dropped the Kings record to 7-6 for the season. The Lakers improved to 6-6 for the year. The 15-point loss was the largest margin of defeat at home for Sacramento this season.

Charlie O has the wrap up of the game:


Kings head coach Dave Joerger was still proud of his team in the loss:

Team leader De’Aaron Fox was very subdued when talking with reporters after the game:

Frank Mason III quietly tried to explain his team’s performance in the game:

Marvin Bagley III had a calm and mature reaction to the loss:

Charlie O has the Lakers’ stats, which were not all that impressive:

Charlie O also has the Kings’ numbers and final thoughts:

Game notes:

  • The Lakers had a season-high 59 rebounds in the contest
  • LakeShow also had a season-high 17 offensive rebounds, which led to 17-second-chance points
  • The Kings are now 4-2 in back-to-back games
  • Willie Cauley-Stein posted his fifth double-double of the season with 12 points and 12 rebounds
  • After the game, the Kings announced that Harry Giles III has been assigned to the Stockton Kings of the G-League and will play with Stockton on Sunday. That really is not a surprise. The Kings have used their G-League team to get rookies playing time in the past when they have not been able to get significant minutes with the big club. This most certainly is a temporary assignment.

Pelicans land hard on the Kings in a 149-129 win in “the Big Easy”

Bagley vs Pels
Bagley slams it home Photo @SacramentoKings

By Charlie O. Mallonee

By the end of the evening in New Orleans, the Sacramento Kings would rather have been in Yuba City because they had no reason to celebrate on Bourbon Street. The Kings gave up 149 points to the New Orleans Pelicans in their loss on Friday night. The 149 points was a new game-high scoring record for the New Orleans franchise.

The Kings did score 129 points of their own, but it was in a losing effort. There were some highlights but a loss is a loss. This was the Kings first road loss of 2018-19, and they are now 0-2 on the season.

Joerger’s take
”I saw some really good things offensively tonight,” Kings coach Dave Joerger said. ”I see, certainly, a lot of things defensively that can be learned through experience that just takes time as younger guys learn how to play against older guys. I am not fired up about giving up 149, but I do like what I see from a lot of our guys.”

Maybe this reporter is just a little impatient, but he has heard the “I saw some really good things” line many times over the last two years. Yes, this is a completely reworked roster with some very young players, but the “I’m happy with some of what I saw from my team tonight” line is going to wear thin very quickly. After 10 games if the team is playing poorly, the coach is going to have to speak honestly about the way his team is playing. The time to “kick butt and take names” is coming sooner and not later for Sacramento.

Coming out party for MBIIIV
The Kings top draft pick saw some major playing time on Friday versus the Pelicans. Bagley played 32-plus minutes and matched up well against “the Brow” – Anthony Davis. MBIIIV put up 19 points hitting 7-of-10 from the field. He converted 5-of-6 opportunities from the free throw line. Bagley grabbed eight rebounds, had three assists and made three steals.

Not a bad second game as a professional for a 19-year old having to go up against Anthony Davis.

WCS comes up “Big” again
Willie Cauley-Stein was the Kings leading scorer for the second consecutive game with 20 points in just over 25 minutes of playing time. He shot an impressive 9-for-14 from the floor. The big man also grabbed seven rebounds.

Swipa the Fox and Buddy Buckets showed up as well
De’Aaron Fox shot 6-for-12 from the floor and scored 18 points for the Kings. He also dished out six assists and pulled down seven rebounds. The Fox hit 6-of-7 chances from the free throw line.

Buddy Hield recorded 17 points, hitting 7-of-11 shots from the field. Hield put in 3-of-4 tries from behind the 3-point line. He also added three assists.

Mr. Mason had a big game coming off the bench

Mason vs Pels
Frank Mason works against the Pelicans Photo: @SacramentoKings

Frank Mason III played just over 21-minutes and scored 18 points. Mason shot 7-for-13 from the floor and converted 3-of-4 from the free throw line. He also handed out six assists.

What about Harry Giles III?
Harry had a tough game on Friday night. He committed six fouls in just over 18 minutes on the floor. Giles scored seven points and added four rebounds. He shot just 3-for-11 for the game. Rookies sometimes struggle.

Team stats
The Kings shot 52.1-percent (50/96) for the game. The problem was the Pelicans shot 58.9-percent (56/95) in the contest.

Sacramento hit 10-of-25 (40-percent) from 3-point land. New Orleans buried 16-of-31 tries from behind the long-distance line.

The Pelicans outrebounded the Kings 52 to 39.

The need for defense
The practice on Saturday will be all about defense. The Kings have proved they can score. Now, they need to figure out how to stop their opponents from scoring at will.

Up next
The Kings will return to action on Sunday on the road in Oklahoma City versus the Thunder at 4:00 pm PT. The quest for their first victory of 2018-19 does not get any easier having to face a team a talented as the Thunder on the road.

Kings get crushed by the Warriors in Seattle 122-94

Hield moves the ball while KD can only watch Photo: @SacramentoKings

By Charlie O. Mallonee

There are many things that can be said about the Kings’ 122-94 loss to the Warriors on Friday night in Seattle. It was the second game of a back-to-back schedule on the road. Sacramento went from playing “King James” and the Lakers on Thursday to having to face the World Champion Golden State Warriors on Friday night. The team didn’t even get to check into the hotel in Seattle until 3:00 AM on Friday morning.

That is a rough schedule. Welcome to the NBA, men. None of that is an excuse for losing–let alone for getting blown out and having the game’s outcome be decided by the end of the first half.

Klay Thompson was the slayer of the Kings in the game. Thompson put up 19 points on Sacramento in the first quarter. He connected on 5-of-8 shots from behind the arc. He  would finish with 30 points for the game.

Preseason games are never known for their defense but giving up 74 points in the first half is unacceptable no matter when it happens. The Warriors shot 51.6-percent (47/91) for the game. The Warriors’ 3-point shooting did slow down and they finished with a 35.5-shooting percentage.

The Kings next practice will no doubt emphasize the defensive elements of the game.

How did they perform?

  • Harry Giles III lead the Kings in scoring with 17 points in just over 20 minutes of playing time. He also pulled down five rebounds.
  • Skal Labissiere had a better game on Friday night. He scored 10 points, grabbed eight rebounds and added two assists in his 26-plus minutes on the floor.
  • Willie Cauley-Stein also dropped in 10 points and cleaned seven rebounds off the glass.
  • Frank Mason scored 10 points and added seven assists in his 19 minutes of action.
  • Justin Jackson had a better night on offense as he recorded eight points. Marvin Bagley III also added eight points plus nine rebounds.
  • Buddy Hield, De’Aaron Fox and Ben McLemore scored seven points apiece.
  • The Kings shot 34.7-percent (34/98) from the field for the game. They did shoot a very decent 45.8-percent (11/24) from 3-point range. Sacramento went to the free throw line 21 times and converted 15 of those opportunities.

Up Next

The Kings will return to action on Monday night in Sacramento when they will play their annual preseason game with Maccabi Haifa. That game is scheduled for a 7:00 PM tipoff.

Key Arena will be gutted and completely remodeled Photo: @SacramentoKings

Warriors down the Kings 71-54 Tuesday in game two of the California Classic

GSW Over Sac
Damian Jones shoots over Harry Giles III on Tuesday night Photo: @Warriors

By Charlie O. Mallonee

The Warriors beat the Kings 71-54 Tuesday night in a game where Sacramento lacked the energy they showed in their victory on Monday night.

Here is a look at the Warriors’ stats:

GSW over Sac 2
Warriors number one draft pick Jacob Evans made his pro debut in the game Photo: @Warriors

The Kings had some individual stats that they will like to remember.

Point guard Frank Mason represented the Kings in the postgame press conference.

SAC 7-2
The Kings found Warriors crowded under the bucket on every shot Photo: Charlie O. Mallonee

Here is Summer League head coach Larry Lewis’ postgame analysis.


  • No games on July 4th
  • Thursday 12 Noon: Warriors vs. Lakers
  • Thursday 2:00 PM: Heat vs. Kings

Kings Press Row Podcast: The All-Star Break Edition

press row podcast

hosts Charlie O and Jordan “Chape” Chapin

  • Kings dominate the “Rising Stars Game”

  • Bogi grabs the MVP honors in the game

  • A look at the Kings revamped roster

  • A review of the remaining schedule

  • Total wins projection for the season

  • The role of Iman Shumpert

  • The return of Frank Mason III and Skal Labissiere

Scoring duo of Warren and Booker too much for Kings to handle: Suns win 111-101

Devin Booker scores two of his 26 points against the Kings Photo: Jordan Chapin

by Jordan Chapin with Charlie O. Mallonee

Sacramento- Friday night at the Golden 1 Center, the Sacramento Kings fell to Devin Booker, and the Phoenix Suns, 111-101. Kings started out hot, as Skal Labissiere scored 10 of the Kings first 17 points, including an emphatic put back dunk. The Suns had an answer, by the name of T.J Warren, who hit seven of his first eight shots from the field. Phoenix finished off the first with a 14-0 run in the final two minutes. 

The Kings trailed the Suns throughout the entirety of the second and third quarters, as T.J Warren continued his efficient night with a bit of help from Marquese Chriss who finished with 14-points (3-for-3 from 3P). Sacramento struggled from 3-point land tonight, shooting only 8-for-24 from behind the arc. 
In the first several minutes of the fourth, the Kings put together a 8-0 run, capped off by a Willie Cauley-Stein, alley-oop dunk, from Bogdan Bogdanovic resulting in a 97-93 lead by the Kings. With just over four minutes left to go, Phoenix tied the game 98-98, then it was the Devin Booker show.  In the last four minutes, Booker and the Suns took over the game, scoring 12 unanswered points, and Devin booker handed the Kings their 23rd loss of the season by scoring nine of those final 12-points on his own. 
Despite having seven players in double digits, the Kings fell to a hot Phoenix Suns team, who has won five of their last seven games. The Kings will try to split the season series at two games a piece when they face the Suns in Phoenix, on April 3rd. Sacramento will continue there homestand, New Years Eve, against Marc Gasol and the Memphis Grizzlies. 
Battle of the big men as Zach Randolph attacks the basket against Tyson Chandler Photo Jordan Chapin
Top Performers
Star of the Game: Skal Labissiere 
Skal played only 15 minutes, but made the best of them. Despite having sub-par performances and a couple DNP’s in his last few games, Labissiere ended with 12-points, 5-of-6 from the field, four rebounds, including two offensive rebounds, and an assist. Skal played with a lot of energy and scored 10 of the Kings first 17 points. 
Co-star: Garrett Temple 
 Temple helped keep Sacramento in the game shooting 5-of-8 from the field(2-for-3 from 3P)and ended with 12-points to go along with five dimes and three boards. Temple hit a few big shots throughout the game, but it wasn’t enough to get the victory. 
Star of the Game: T.J Warren 
Warren was the thorn in the Kings side tonight, racking up a double-double, finishing with 26-points and 10 rebounds. T.J Warren was very steady throughout tonight’s game and was the biggest key in the Suns win. 
Co-star: Devin Booker 
 Despite a below average shooting night from Booker, he finished with 26-points, three assists and three rebounds. He shot only 3-for-9 from behind the arc, but in the end, hit the dagger that put the Suns over the top in a 111-101 victory.
Coach’s Comments after the game

Team Stats

Phoenix (14-23)

  • Field goal shooting: 41-for-85 (48.2-percent)
  • 3-Point shooting: 13-for-30 (43.3-percent)
  • Free Throws: the Suns converted 16-of-24 chances at the charity stripe (66.7-percent)
  • Rebounds: 16 offensive 29 defensive 45 total +7 over the Kings
  • Assists to Turnovers: 26 assists; 11 turnovers that became 12 Sacramento points
  • Second chance points: Suns 19 Kings 11
  • Fast Break Points: Suns 18 Kings 14

Sacramento (12-23)

  • Field goal shooting: 37-for-80 (46.2-percent)
  • 3-Point shooting: 8-for-24 (33.3-percent)
  • Free Throws: the Kings put in 19-of-23 opportunities from the line (82.6-percent)
  • Rebounds: 9 offensive 29 defensive 38 total -7 to the Suns
  • Assists to Turnovers: 22 assists; 10 turnovers that turned into 15 Phoenix points
  • Points in the paint: Kings 40 Suns 38
Frank Mason III drives through traffic to the basket versus the Suns Photo Jordon Chapin

Up Next


The Suns headed home after the game and will host the Philadelphia 76ers on New Year’s Eve. The Suns and Kings will meet one more time this season on April 3, 2018 in Phoenix.


The Kings will also be back in action on last day of 2017 when they will host the Memphis Grizzlies at the Golden 1 Center in a 4:00 pm tilt. Sacramento will then have a busy first week of the New Year as they will host the Hornets, Nuggets and Spurs to kickoff the month of January.



Kings beat the Sixers 101-95 in Philly Tuesday night to sweep the season series

Z=bo vs sixers
Zach Randolph was a leader in the Kings victory over the Sixers Photo USA Today Sports

by Charlie O. Mallonee

The Sacramento Kings picked up their first win on their four-game road trip Tuesday night when they downed the Philadelphia 76ers 101-95 in Philadelphia. The victory gave the Kings the series sweep over the Sixers who they defeated in Sacramento on November 9th 109-108.

That is a bit ironic after the Kings just finished being swept by the Toronto Raptors on Sunday.

The Kings found themselves down 78-71 as they headed into the fourth quarter. They would need a 10-point effort from Buddy Hield and nine-points from Garrett Temple to lead a 30-point scoring barrage that would help them to victory. Willie Cauley-Stein added six-points in the final period as the Kings outscored the Sixers 30-17 in the fourth quarter.

Sacramento used 12-of-13 players on their bench in the contest. Only Georgios Papagiannis did not play. George Hill was not available due to illness.

The Sixers held a 57-48 lead at halftime due to some solid play from Robert Covington, Ben Simmons, T.J. McConnell and JJ Redick. Philly outscored the Kings 30-18 in the second quarter and it looked like the Sacramento squad might be in for a long night.

Sacramento kept things close in the third period which allowed them to have opportunity to take control in the fourth quarter.

Kings star of the game

Frank Mason to hoo[
Frank Mason had another strong game off the bench for the Kings Photo USA Today Sports
Rookie reserve point guard Frank Mason gets the star of the game nod for the win over the Sixers on Tuesday night. Mason scored 16-points in just over 22-minutes of playing time on the floor. The four-year Kansas alum shot 7-for-9 from the floor and went 2-for-2 from behind the 3-point line. He also recorded two blocked shots in the game. Mason has demonstrated a maturity and confidence coming off the bench that has served the Kings very well this season.

Kings co-stars of the game

  • Zach Randolph made a good argument that he should have been the star of the game. The veteran power forward put up 27-points and grabbed five rebounds in just over 28-minutes on the court. The man who was brought in as a “role model” has become “a game changer” for the Kings.
  • Buddy Hield did not have his best night from 3-point land but he shot 9-for-19 for the game. He recorded 24-points, grabbed five rebounds, dished out two assists and made three steals in just over 28-minutes of playing time.

Sixers star of the game

Ben Simmons has to get the star as he came within one assist of recording a triple-double. Simmons scored 13-points, hauled in 12 rebounds and distributed nine assists in his 32-plus minutes on the floor.

Sixers co-stars of the game

  • Forward Robert Covington recorded 17-points despite having a very tough shooting night. Covington shot 5-for-19 overall and just 2-for-13 from 3-point range. He did go a perfect 5-for-5 from the free throw line.
  • Jerryd Bayless scored 15 points for the second-unit coming off the bench and seeing just over 26-minutes of action in the contest. Bayless shot 5-for-12 overall and hit 4-of-8 opportunities from downtown.

Key Team stats of the game


  • The Kings shot 41-for-91 (45.1-percent) in the game and hit 7-of-27 (25.9-percent) from behind the 3-point line.
  • Sacramento went 12-for-23 from the free throw line ( the percentage was poor but the number of attempts was excellent and was a real improvement)
  • The Kings committed just 12 turnovers which became 15 Philly points


  • The Sixers shot 34-for-81 for the game. That was 10 less attempts and seven less conversions than the Kings.
  • Philly hit 10-of-35 3-point attempts. That was three more conversions than the Kings.
  • They went 17-for-24 from the free throw line. The Sixers hit five more free throws than the Kings.
  • Philly out-rebounded the Kings 53-39

Up next

Kings (10-20)

Sacramento wraps up their four-game road on Wednesday night when they will face the Brooklyn Nets in Brooklyn. The Nets are 11-18 on the season. gives the Kings a 27-percent chance of winning the game and makes them a six point underdog.

Sixers (14-16)

Philly will host the Toronto Raptors on Thursday night. makes the Sixers a 0.5 underdog and gives them only a 48-percent chance to win.


Z-Bo goes head-to-head with Boogie and leads Kings to a 116-109 OT win in NOLA

kingspels graphic

by Charlie O. Mallonee with Jordan Chapin

The Sacramento Kings went into the game in New Orleans on Friday night as eight to 10.5-point underdogs. gave the Kings just a 15-percent chance of leaving the “Crescent City” with a win. By the end of 53-minutes of playing time in the Smoothie King Arena, everyone who picked the Pelicans to win were 100-percent wrong.

The Kings needed five extra minutes but they defeated DeMarcus Cousins and the New Orleans Pelicans 116-109 to finish their four-game road trip with a record of 2-2. Sacramento won the games in Chicago and New Orleans. They had a realistic chance to win the games they lost in Milwaukee and Cleveland. The Kings played at a higher level on this road trip.

The Kings had to fight and claw their way through the 53-minutes of playing time to stay in this game. There were 12 lead changes and the game was tied 11 times. The Pels biggest lead was 10-points and the Kings largest lead was nine-points. This contest was a “Battle Royale” from start to finish.

Z-Bo was the star of the game for the Kings

Zach Randolph
Randolph and Cousins battled each other all game long Friday night (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

The 36-year old veteran center played like a man half his age on Friday night. Randolph was the Kings leading scorer with 35-points and he made it a double-double game by hauling in 13 rebounds. He shot 14-for-22 from the field and hit 5-of-9 from 3-point range. Randolph did all of that while dealing Cousins on defense during his almost 34-minutes of playing time.

Kings co-stars

kingspels buddy
Buddy Hield drives the lane in NOLA
  • Buddy Hield showed the fans in New Orleans what they lost when he was shipped to SAC for Cousins. Hield posted 18-points and grabbed seven rebounds. He shot 7-for-12 for the game and 4-for-5 from behind the 3-point line. Hield sank the 3-point basket that tied the game and sent it into overtime.
  • De’Aaron Fox played over 36-minutes in the game and scored 14-points. He was teamed up with Frank Mason down the stretch and in overtime to help lead the Kings to the victory.
  • Frank Mason came off the bench to lead the second-unit again on Friday night. The rookie out of Kansas scored 12-points, grabbed five rebounds and added three assists.
  • The Kings other “O.G” – Vince Carter – played a big role for the Kings versus the Pelicans. The 40-year old veteran played 32-plus minutes and scored six-points. He also recorded four rebounds and distributed two assists.  Carter also had two dunks ( three if you count the one at the final buzzer that was waved off that could have been the potential game winner).
  • Georgios “Papa G” Papagiannis played an important nine-plus minutes off the bench. The big man was almost a surprise contributor in this game. He came in and played “Boogie” tough while scoring six-points and hauling in three rebounds. Papa G was a perfect 3-for-3 shooting in the game.

DeMarcus was the star of the game for New Orleans

There are very few observers of the NBA who do not see DeMarcus Cousins as being the premiere center in the league. On Friday night, Boogie reminded everyone in Sacramento what they lost when he was traded to the Pelicans.

Cousins dropped in a game-high 38-points and made it a double-double game by adding 11-rebounds. The big man also had four assists and three steals.

Cousins shot 14-for-30 from the field (4-for-10 from 3-point land). He converted 6-of-7 opportunities from the charity stripe.

Love him or hate him – Cousins is an awesome talent.

Other Pelicans who contributed

  • Anthony “the Brow” Davis returned to action after missing three games. Davis played 30-minutes and scored 18-points. He went a perfect 8-for-8 from the free throw line.
  • Ian Clark scored 15 points in just under 28-minutes of playing time. He shot 6-for-8 from the field.
  • Jrue Holiday added 14 points. He shot 50-percent for the game hitting 6-of-12 field goal attempts.
  • Rajon Rondo – who has been “hot” for the Pels since returning from injury was held out for rest. That decision may be questioned after this disappointing loss.

Team stats that matter


  • SAC shot 48.5-percent (47-for-97) for the game and 43.3-percent (13-for-30) from behind the 3-point line.
  • The Kings out-rebounded NOLA 46-35
  • Sacramento dished out 21 assists and turned the ball over 20 times (good for 12 Pels points).
  • The Kings made 12 steals in the game.


  • New Orleans posted a 46.1-field goal percentage (41-for-89). They hit 10-of-28 3-point attempts (35.7-percent).
  • The Pelicans converted 17-of-19 free throw attempts.
  • The Pels booked 19 assists and committed 17 turnovers (became 22 Kings points).

Update from Reno

Skal Labissiere scored 29-points, grabbed 17 rebounds and added seven blocks in his start for the Big Horns this week. Look for him to be in Sacramento on Sunday.

Up next

Kings (8-17)

The Kings will return to action on Sunday versus the very talented Toronto Raptors (16-7). The game has an unusual start time as it will tip-off at 12:30 pm.

Pelicans (13-13)

New Orleans wraps up a four-game homestand on Sunday when they host the 76ers.