by Jonathan Santiago & James Ham

Chippy play between DeMarcus Cousins and Blake Griffin highlighted a 93-85 loss for the Sacramento Kings against the Los Angeles Clippers Thursday evening.

“I thought that was a great football game tonight,” said head coach Keith Smart of the match-up between Cousins and Griffin during his postgame comments.  “It was two big guys playing and these guys are physical.  It’s going to be a great rivalry as we develop this team to be consistent at winning.”

After posting a career-high 41 against Phoenix , Cousins was limited to just eight points in under 20 minutes of play.  Foul trouble plagued the Kings big man throughout the contest.  Griffin, meanwhile, scored just 14 points and finished one rebound shy of a double-double.

The Kings fall to 19-35 overall and 14-13 at home.  They head to Los Angeles for a re-match with Clippers on Saturday.


Notes and Analysis

  • Jason Thompson played huge tonight while Cousins sat on the bench in foul trouble.  The fourth-year big man out of Rider finished with a 15 points and 16 rebounds in 39 minutes for the Kings.
  • Rookie Isaiah Thomas won this round against superstar Chris Paul.  Thomas finished with a team high 17 points on 7-for-15 shooting and grabbed five rebounds.
  • Paul scored just 13 points on 4-for-16 shooting against Thomas. He did, however, also finish with eight assists, five rebounds and the win.
  • Vinnie Del Negro clearly had a plan tonight when he sent in veterans Kenyon Martin and Reggie Evans.  That plan?  Get in Cousins head. That’s exactly what happened as the Kings go-to-guy played just 18 minutes before fouling out in the final period.
  • Randy Foye scored a game-high 20 points for the Clippers tonight.  He shot 7-for-17 from the field and only 1-for-6 from 3-point range, but he hit all four of his free throws down the stretch for the win.
  • The Kings did a nice job of holding Griffin in check tonight until the closing minutes of the game.  After coach Smart went away from Thompson at the 4:35 mark of the fourth, Griffin scored all six of his fourth quarter points.
  • Terrence Williams and Jimmer Fredette seem to be building some very nice on-court chemistry.  While Williams has made a habit out of setting up Jimmer, the rookie returned the favor tonight.  The duo finished with seven total assists, three of which were on the others made baskets.
  • The Kings couldn’t score more than 23 points in a single quarter tonight.  They scored 23 points in the first, 19 points in the second, 20 points in the third and 23 points in the fourth.
  • Stat of the Night: For a third straight game, Tyreke Evans failed to attempt a three. He has gone 12 consecutive games without hitting the long ball, going 0-for-8 during that stretch.  He finished with 14 points and six assists on the night.

Video shot by Tobin Halsey.