The Sacramento Kings attempt to duplicate the success of “Here We Buy Night” when they welcome in the Houston Rockets into Sleep Train Arena this evening. The Kings easily defeated the Utah Jazz, 120-109, in front of a healthy crowd of 16,000-plus yesterday night.
Six Kings players scored in double-figures in Saturday’s win, including Marcus Thornton. The Kings sixth man shook off his recent struggles to score 24 points in 27 minutes. Kings coach Keith Smart said that a heart to heart with Thornton helped one of his best scorers play at a high level last night.
I talked with Marcus a little bit and tried to negotiate with his time of coming into the basketball game. And I thought that helped him. I said to him a couple times in practice, “what you put in is what you get out of it”. And I thought he did a great job over the last couple days of practicing at a real high rate. Got away from the me syndrome or why I’m not (playing). (Instead) hey, what you put in is what you get out. And I thought him being in a role where he got a little bit earlier minutes into the basketball game, I think that kind of got him into a mode of playing very well.
The Kings have their hands full with the Rockets backcourt. James Harden is having a career year, which has been rewarded with his first All-Star nod. Linsanity may not be in full effect these days, but Jeremy Lin is still more than capable of having a standout performance here and there. Isaiah Thomas offered his take on the Rockets two guards.
Two good guards. James Harden’s one of the best guards in the NBA and then Jeremy Lin, he’s pretty good too. So, we gotta bring our hard hat and be ready, come to work and try to slow those guys down.
Tip-off between the Kings and Jazz is set for 6 pm PT. Visit Cowbell Kingdom throughout the day for continued pre and postgame coverage.