OAKLAND - If this was the final game of a two-decade old, Northern California rivalry, the team from Sacramento can claim they came out on top. Powered by the hot shooting of starting point guard Isaiah Thomas, the Kings dispatched the Warriors 105-98 in the last meeting between the two teams this season.
With the victory, the Kings take the season series by a 3-1 margin. Sacramento came away victorious in both match-ups at Sleep Train Arena and split the two road games in Oakland this season.
The Kings now move to 26-46 on the season, 7-30 on the road. They finish off a two-games-in-two-nights set with a trip to Phoenix tomorrow evening.
Notes and Analysis
- Isaiah Thomas was unstoppable for the Kings. The starting point guard finished with 31 points on 10-of-18 shooting and shot 7-of-12 from 3-point distance. He scored 17 of his 30-plus in the third quarter. Tonight was the third time this year that Thomas matched or broke the 30-point threshold.
- DeMarcus Cousins finished with just 14 points and six rebounds in the victory. Cousins played just 24 minutes and was not much a factor late in the game. Keith Smart opted to go with Chuck Hayes and Patrick Patterson in the quarter, leaving Cousins on the bench the entire period.
- Toney Douglas continues to steal away minutes from Jimmer Fredette, who did not play this evening. Douglas played just about 17 minutes in the win and provided the Kings with strong defense against the Warriors backcourt.
- At the start of the game, Jason Thompson appeared to be climbing out of his slump, scoring eight points in the first quarter. However, the veteran power forward scored only one more point the rest of the game and played a total of 23 minutes in the win.
- Stephen Curry racked up a double-double for the Warriors – 17 points and 12 assists. However, he made just 5-of-18 shots.
- Klay Thompson did not have a shooter’s touch in tonight’s game. The Warriors starting shooting guard scored just four points and made 1-of-13 attempts from the field. The Kings talked postgame about running Thompson off the 3-point line to thwart his effectiveness.
- Stat of the Night: In defeat, the Warriors outscored the Kings 68-38 in points in the paint. That’s a season-high for a Kings opponent this season.
Three answers to three questions pondered
1. Will Vivek Ranadivé be sitting courtside for tonight’s match-up?
Ranadivé was not in the house this evening. This fact came to light hours before the game when Warriors PR staff informed media that the prospective Kings owner would not be attending tonight’s game. However, there still were a few notable figures in the house in the form of two hall of famers. Legends Jerry West and Bill Russell sat courtside next to Warriors owner Joe Lacob for parts of the evening.
2. Will Tyreke Evans be sidelined tonight due to illness?
A stomach ailment sidelined him late in Sunday’s loss to the 76ers and caused him to miss practice the other day. The illness made Evans a gametime decision against the Warriors, but he managed to muster up the wherewithal to play in tonight’s game. Evans started at shooting guard for the Kings, but was not much of a factor on offense. He finished with 12 points on 12 shots and five assists in the Kings’ victory. He noted after the game that he’s still not sure what caused him to get sick in the first place.
Jack outshined his sixth man counterpart this evening, but barely. The veteran guard scored 16 points on 6-of-13 shooting in roughly 36 minutes on the floor. Meanwhile, Thornton appeared to be on his way to a strong night, scoring 11 points in the first half. However, he finished with just 13 points on 13 shots in the victory. Safe to say that neither bench player was much of a factor on offense this evening.
Quotes of the Game
Isaiah Thomas on the third quarter:
We wanted to come out of halftime and just sustain that run they started the half with and just be aggressive and make plays. Guys made a lot of plays in that third quarter, finding each other and knocking down shots, so we had a good third quarter.
Andrew Bogut on losing to team not slated to make the playoffs:
There’s no excuse for it, one through 12. The coaches do a great job of preparing us, the fans are great, but we need to regroup the next two days. We have a tough road team coming in also competing for a playoff spot. We have to move on with it. We need to remember this one, there’s no excuse for it – especially at this point of the season. We’re playing for more than their team, so kudos to them.