Kings bow to King James and the Lakers 129-113; L.A.’s Davis finishes on top with 21

The Los Angeles Lakers LeBron James (23) drives on the Sacramento Kings Harold Barnes (40) at Golden One Center in Sacramento Saturday night photo from bleacherreport.com

By Jeremiah Salmonson

SACRAMENTO–The Kings were coming off a great win against the other LA team the Los Angeles Clippers. The Kings played a great game and managed to record 21 three point makes. That was a franchise record. So, the Kings were looking to continue the trend against one of the best teams in basketball the Los Angeles Lakers.

In the first half, the Lakers looked like a team on a mission. The Lakers scored an incredible 29 field goals on 26 assists for a total of 81 points in the first half. It was a display you rarely see in basketball, and unfortunately it was against the Kings.

The Lakers hit 14 three pointers in the first half that put the Kings in a tough spot in the second half. The Kings did manage to score 64 points on 44% percent shooting. Ultimately, the Lakers just played a dominant form of basketball that the Kings and their defense couldn’t keep up with in the first half. Leading the way for the Lakers was surprisingly Avery Bradley with 16 points.

Right behind him was Anthony Davis and LeBron James with 13 and 13 respectively. For the Kings, Harry Giles led the way with 12 points followed by Buddy Hied with 11 in the first half.

In the second half, it was more of the same. The Kings managed to do a better job holding the Lakers down in the second half but it was ultimately to no avail. The Lakers 81 point first proved too much for the Kings to handle as the fell 129-113.

The Lakers played one of the best games of the year as the offensive output put the game out of reach from the first quarter on. Anthony Davis led the way for the Lakers with 21 points followed but the surprise performance of Avery Bradley who had 19. De’Aaron Fox led the game in scoring with 24 points as LeBron James led the game in assists and rebounds with 11 and 10 respectively.

Up Next: The Kings stay home to face the Minnesota Timberwolves on Monday night.

 

Headline Sports podcast with London Marq: Cousins may leave Golden State, but can he fit in with Lakers?; US Women’s Soccer team could win it all this Sunday; plus more

Photo credit: @LakeShowWorld

On Headline Sports with London:

#1 Critics says that there is no market for DeMarcus Cousins. What would you say the reason are as someone who covered him while he was at Golden State? Too many injuries, didn’t fulfill what the Warriors expected out him, too much baggage.

#2 Would the Lakers consider picking up Cousins? Cousins is reportedly watching if Kawhi Leonard decides to sign with the Lakers and if so would Cousins want to join Leonard in the Southland?

#3 You were there, how impressive were the Earthquakes when they shutout the LA Galaxy 3-0 at Stanford Stadium last Saturday?

#4 Quakes head coach Matias Almeyda said the game was a spectacle and the team is on the right path and has improved.

#5 The US Women’s team got a 2-1 win over England to advance to the Finals, which will be played on Sunday. Talk about how nervous you are for this upcoming match that could win it all.

London Marq does Headline Sports for http://www.sportsradioservice.com each Wednesday

California Classic Day 3 Recap

Photo credit: @SacramentoKings

By: Jeremiah Salmonson

SACRAMENTO — Wednesday was the third and final day of the California Classic at the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California. The four teams participating in the Classic would travel to Las Vegas after the festivities wrapped up on Wednesday afternoon to continue Summer League action.

Two games were on tap for Wednesday: The Miami Heat and Golden State Warriors at 12 PM PST as well as the LA Lakers and Sacramento Kings at 2 PM PST.

Game 1
Game one featured the Miami Heat and Golden State Warriors, who got off to a very slow offensive start. The Heat managed to put up a few baskets in the opening minutes, but the Warriors couldn’t muster anything. It wasn’t until 6:01 that the Warriors finally managed to score. Damian Jones was fouled and made both shots. The Warriors managed to regain control of the offense and score 38 in the first half. The Heat, on the other hand, stayed steadily mediocre. They scored 12 in the first quarter and 18 in the second to trail 30-38 at the half.

Damian Jones led the Warriors with 8 points into halftime. Davon Reed had 7 points. The Heat’s leading scorers in the first half were Yante Maten, who dropped 10 points, and Tyler Herro with 7 points.

In the second half, the third quarter looked much like the first. Both teams struggled on offense. Please give credit to good defense from both teams, but the real culprit was bad shooting. When the third was said and done, the Heat scored 15 and the Warriors had 12. The score was 50-45 in favor of the Lakers heading into the final quarter. In the final minutes of the game, the Warriors offense fell sharply and the Heat picked up the slack. The Heat scored 26 fourth quarter points compared to the Warriors’ 14. The Warriors fell to the Heat 73-65.

Kendrick Nunn led the Heat with 21 points. Other notable Heat scorers were Tyler Herro with 20 points and Yante Maten with 16 points. Leading Warriors scorers were Damian Jones with 15 points and Davon Reed with 12 points.

Game 2
Unlike the first game of the day, the Kings offense got going early in this game. The Kings jumped to an early lead over the Lakers with quick points from Hollis Thompson. However, the Lakers began to roll offensively about halfway through the first and made it close at the end of the first quarter. The score was 23-22 in favor of Sacramento after the first quarter.

In the second quarter, the Kings and Lakers traded baskets without much separation coming between the two teams in the early minutes. Then, the Lakers offense slowed down as they were only able to put 17 points. Wenyen Gabriel led the Kings to a first half lead with 11 points. Hollis Thompson scored 10 points, and Kyle Guy had 10 points. The Kings took a 47-39 lead into the second half.

In the second half, the Kings kept the offensive pressure on the Lakers by scoring 28 in the third. That would be better than the Lakers’ 24 in the third. Sacramento was in the driver’s set 75-63 going into the fourth quarter.

However, in the fourth, the Lakers made it interesting. They outscored the Kings 36-22, and in miraculous fashion, won 99-97. The main reason the Lakers pulled this one out was because of Jordan Howard. Howard, who came into the fourth quarter with 8 points, dropped 17 points to lead the Lakers with 25 points. Other notable Lakers scorers were Nick Perkins with 20 points and Devontae Cacok with 13 points.

The Kings were also on the receiving end of many good performances from their young players, but were sadly downed by the Lakers. The most notable Kings performance came from first-year guard Kyle Guy, who scored 14 points on the night. Wenyen Gabriel added 16 points to his California Classic resume. Semaj Christon had 13 points.

All four teams now head to Vegas to continue their NBA Summer League Slate.

California Classic Day 1 Recap

Photo credit: @abscbnsports

By: Jeremiah Salmonson

SACRAMENTO — Golden One Center was ready on Monday night to welcome in the California Classic for the second time. Kings, Warriors, Heat, and Lakers fans began to descend upon the arena when the gates opened at 5 PM local time in Sacramento. On the slate for Monday evenings action was the first game of the Miami Heat facing off against the Los Angeles Lakers at 6 PM PST. On tap for the 8 PM game was the Sacramento Kings and the Golden State Warriors.

Game 1: Miami Heat vs. LA Lakers at 6 PM
In the first game the Heat and Lakers showcased their young talent. Even though the score doesn’t particularly matter in summer league action, the Heat drubbed the Lakers. The Lakers appeared to get off to a fast start in the first quarter, but fell behind in the later minutes and the Heat took the lead.

The Heat then began to pour it on in the next two quarters as the Lakers couldn’t muster anything on defense. At the end of the third the Lakers trailed the Heat 86-54. You could guess what happened the rest of the way. The Heat continued to put up points and down the Lakers 106-79.

However, if you’re reading this, you probably care more about which players put up the best numbers than what the score was. The Heat’s leading scorers were Tyler Herro (18 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists), Duncan Robinson (17 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists), and Charles Cooke (15 points, 2 rebounds).

The leading scorers for the Lakers were Rosco Allen (13 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assists), and Zack Norwell Jr. (11 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists).

Game 2: Sacramento Kings vs. Golden State Warriors at 8 PM
In the second game, it was time for the Kings and heat to see what their young talent and newly drafted players could do.

The first half would prove to be an up and down battle between both teams. The Warriors outscored the Kings in the first quarter 23-18, but then the Kings came back and outscored the Warriors 23-9 in the second quarter to take a lead into halftime. Leading scorers for the Kings in the first half were Wenyen Gabriel (11 points), and Hollis Thompson (8 points). Leading the way for the Warriors were Jimmer Fredette and Damian Jones, both with 7 points.

In the second half, it remained a close game with the Kings and Warriors trading baskets. The Kings were outscored by the Warriors 21-19 in the third. Going into the fourth, the Kings would still have the lead 60-53.

In the fourth quarter, the Kings faltered a bit to the Warriors. They allowed them to come back and take the lead midway through the quarter. However, Sacramento was able to battle back and secure the win 81 to 77 over the Warriors. The Kings’ notable scorers were Wenyen Gabriel (22 points), Hollis Thompson (11 points), and Semaj Christon (13 points). The Warriors’ notable scorers were Jacob Evans (18 Points), Damian Jones (14 Points), and Jimmer Fredette (14 points).

The Kings’ newly drafted prospects Kyle Guy and Justin James also logged good minutes. Guy scored 10 points and James scored 7 points in their Sacramento debuts.

Notes: Kings regulars De’Aaron Fox, Buddy Hield, Harrison Barnes, Marvin Bagley, Harry Giles and Bogdan Bogdanovic were all in attendance for the Kings game. Also in attendance was Kings legend Chris Webber.

Next Up: The California Classic continues on Tuesday with the Lakers facing the Warriors at 6 PM PST and the Heat facing the Kings at 8 PM PST.

Kings Fold in the Fourth; Lose to Lakers 106-100

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Photo Credit: Rocky Widner/NBAE/Getty Images

By Charlie O. Mallonee

The Kings lost at home on Friday night to the Los Angeles Lakers 106-100. It was game they did not have to lose. It was a game the Kings should have won.

After the game, Kings Head Coach Michael Malone said one word was on his mind, “discipline. And, we had none in this game tonight.”

Turnovers and lack of defense in the fourth quarter led to the Kings defeat. The Kings turned to ball over five times in the final period. The Lakers outscored the Kings 25-13 in fourth. That lack of discipline cost Sacramento the 87-81 lead they had after three periods of play.

The game started slow for the Kings. It looked like they might fall back into their habit of falling seriously behind and then having to play catch up later in the game. With 3:19 to play in the first, Isaiah Thomas came into the game for Vasquez and the Kings’ tempo changed dramatically. They went from trailing the Lakers by seven to leading the game by two points (30-28) by the end of the quarter. The crowd knew their team could win the game if they continued to play at that level.

In the second quarter, Thomas continued to lead the way. He played the entire 12 minutes, scored 10 points and dished out three assists. The problem for the Kings became their shot selection and shooting percentage. Sacramento’s field goal shooting dropped to 36.0% (9/25) while the Lakers shot 50.0%. The Kings managed to outscore the Lakers 25-24 in the quarter and took a 55-52 lead with them to locker room at the half.

The Kings came out in the third quarter ready to do battle. They established an eight point lead (68-60) by the 7:39 mark in the period. Then with 6:39 to play, DeMarcus Cousins picked up his fourth personal foul which would ultimately have a dramatic impact on the game as he had to sit on the bench. The rest of the Kings went to work picking up the slack. When Ben McLemore hit back-to-back 3-pointers, it looked like the Kings were poised to beat the Lakers. When the quarter ended, the score was the Kings 87 and the Lakers 81.

Then came the disastrous fourth quarter and the Kings shot just 23.5% (4/17). Isaiah Thomas was 0/4, Cousins was 0/4 and Williams 0/1 from the field. Sacramento turned the ball over five times. They allowed the Lakers to steal the ball five times in the period. The Lakers outscored the Kings 25-13. The Kings ran out of gas, things got ugly and they lost the game 106-100.

“Obviously this isn’t what we worked on, diagrammed or hoped for,” said Michael Malone. “It’s obvious that we have to do a lot more. I thought we had great late-game execution against Golden State. We got whatever we wanted, we scored, and we executed. Tonight, down the stretch, we turned the ball over on almost every possession. It was very disappointing, obviously. We’ll have another chance tomorrow in Utah and we need to regroup to find a way to get a road win.”

DeMarcus Cousins and Ben McLemore led all scorers in the game with 20 points each. Isaiah Thomas tallied 14 points before going cold in the fourth quarter. John Salmons added 13 points; Williams and Thompson had nine points each.

Cousins made it a double-double game with his 20 points and 11 rebounds.

Pau Gasol and Jodie Meeks led the Lakers in scoring with 19 points each. Nick Young scored 14, Wesley Johnson and Steve Blake 13 each and Robert Sacre added 11 points.  Blake posted a double-double by adding 10 assists.

The Kings boarded a plane for Salt Lake City after the game. They will play the Utah Jazz on Saturday night. The Jazz were destroyed by the Trail Blazers on Friday night 130-97. On paper, the Kings should have real chance to defeat the Jazz, but that’s on paper. The reality is the game is on road versus a team that is just as hungry for a win as are the Kings.