Final: Portland Trailblazers 101, Sacramento Kings 79

Recap

Box Score

Grades

Marcus Thornton: Thornton had too many dribble-drive isolation possessions, and that was something he did last night, too.  The difference?  The rims were kinder in Sacramento.  Thornton was only one of five shooting from beyond the arc this evening.

Final Grade: D-

John Salmons:  Salmons was in foul trouble most of the night (he had 4 early on in the 3rd quarter) and just wasn’t able to get into a rhythm on both ends of the court.  He was only able to attempt three shots on the offensive end in less than 18 minutes of action.

Final Grade: F

Tyreke Evans:  Much like Thornton, too much isolation.  And when Evans played off the ball, he didn’t move very well.  Posted the worst plus/minus for the Kings this evening at -21.

Final Grade: D-

DeMarcus Cousins:  An up and down game for Cousins tonight.  He looked good at times, showing what he’s capable of when working on the block.  But he struggled with the outside shot and finished with 18 attempts and just seven makes.  Foul trouble hurt him as well, but at least he was able to finish with another double-double.

Final Grade: B-

Chuck Hayes: With 11 rebounds, Hayes was effective on the glass.  But like Salmons and Cousins, foul trouble killed him.  Hayes also had difficulty handling LaMarcus Aldridge tonight, who was stellar for the Blazers, scoring 24 points on 10 of 15 shooting.

Final Grade: C

J.J. Hickson:  In light of Cousins and Hayes’ play, Hickson played well.  He picked his spots on offense, only shooting six times and making four attempts.  But Jason Thompson played better and maybe deserved more minutes in the second half.

Final Grade: C+

Travis Outlaw:  Offensively, Outlaw was ineffective for the Kings tonight.  However in spots defensively, he filled in admirably for Salmons.  While contesting shots, his length gave Portland’s shooters trouble.

Final Grade: D-

Jimmer Fredette:  When Jimmer is out on the floor, he seems to think pass first, score second.  And based on what we’ve seen of him in the first two nights, he and fellow rookie Isaiah Thomas might be the two best the Kings have at initiating the offense.  But like yesterday, there were times when he was tentative to shoot.

Final Grade:  C-

Jason Thompson: In limited minutes, Thompson put together a nice game.  He only played 14 minutes, but managed to contribute 11 points on five of six shooting.  I was surprised that it took until the fourth quarter for JT to get back in the game.

Final Grade: B+

Isaiah Thomas: Like Jimmer, Thomas seems to command the floor like a point guard should when in the game.  During a possession sometime in the third quarter, he drove and kicked out a wraparound pass to Travis Outlaw, who was camped outside the three-point line.  Unfortunately, the possession didn’t convert into points due to offensive apprehension by Jimmer and Outlaw.

Final Grade: C

- Jonathan Santiago

Notes and Analysis
  • Jason Thompson came to play in the first half.  After registering just seven minutes in the opener, Thompson scored nine points, grabbed a pair of rebounds and blocked a shot in nine first half minutes.  Thompson played only four minutes in the second half.
  • After scoring 47 points in the opener last night against the Lakers, the Kings starting backcourt of Tyreke Evans and Marcus Thornton went cold in game two.  The duo scored just 18 points on a dismal seven of 22 from the floor.
  • DeMarcus Cousins came to play, but foul trouble again limited his playing time and effectiveness.  The second-year big man out of Kentucky scored 16 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in just 25 minutes of play.
  • The Kings torched the Lakers Monday night from behind the 3-point line, shooting 9-for-18.  Tuesday night against the Blazers, they hit just three of 16 attempts.
  • Jimmer Fredette (six points), J.J. Hickson (eight points) and Jason Thompson (nine points), combined to score 23 points off the bench in the first half.  The trio scored a total of eight points in the second half where the Kings were outscored 55 to 33.
  • Travis Outlaw is struggling mightily with his shot.  After a season to forget in New Jersey, where he shot just 37.5 percent from the field, the Kings swingman has hit just two of 10 shots to start the season and missed all four of his three-point attempts.
  • Tyreke Evans had more turnovers on the evening than points (four), assists (two) and rebounds (two).
  • After shooting the ball 14 times in the season opener, John Salmons shot just 1-for-3 on the night and spent much of the evening sitting on the bench in foul trouble.
  • Ball movement is still a huge issue with the Sacramento Kings.  The team tallied 10 assists on 31 made baskets and turned the ball over 17 times.
  • Stat of the night:  The Kings had only one steal.

- James Ham