LAS VEGAS – Another sloppy Summer League performance for the Sacramento Kings tonight. The team struggled with turnovers and once again had trouble finding the basket in a 80-66 loss to the Golden State Warriors. The Kings committed 21 miscues and shot 41.2 percent from the field in a 14-point loss. Below, notes and quotes from players and coaches following today’s game.
- Michael Malone praised his team’s attitude and focus following practice yesterday, but tonight’s game was a different story. He wasn’t particularly happy about the effort from his team Monday evening. “It’s been a long week,” Malone said. “We’ve been here for a while. We’ve been here for eight days now, but when that jump ball goes up we want our competitive spirit to be very high. And so for that not to be the case, I got on them at halftime about that. The turnovers and just our effort. All week long, I praised our guys because we didn’t have to coach effort and tonight was the first time we had to get on them a little bit about playing harder and being a little more physical.”
- Ben McLemore had another tough shooting night, finishing with 14 points on 4-of-12 shooting from the field and an abysmal 1-of-7 from 3-point land. He believes his shot will eventually come along, but he also knows he has to improve other things on the court as well. “As you can see, I’m still shooting the ball,” McLemore said. “I’m not taking away my shot. But I still gotta do some other things, like driving to the basket and going to the foul line.”
- Despite his shooting struggles, McLemore’s coach is okay with the fact that the rookie guard hasn’t been shy about firing away at the rim. What Malone doesn’t want McLemore doing is settling on offense. “Ben, because of his athleticism, cannot be a guy that just settles for jump shots,” Malone said of McLemore. “His jumper is going to fall as long as he is taking the right shot. And he’s gotta be a little more aggressive making plays to the rim.”
- Ray McCallum was the Kings’ lone bright spot this evening. The rookie point guard once again played a heady game, but this time his play matched his production. McCallum scored a game-high 23 points on an effective 7-of-10 shooting while also racking up six steals. “Tonight early on, he got caught just dribbling around a lot, kind of pounding the ball too much,” Malone said of McCallum’s effort tonight. “Second half, he was much more efficient with making plays, getting to the rim, putting pressure on the defense. And he’s a terrific athlete and he showed his athleticism by making plays to the rim and finishing at the rim tonight.”
- What did McCallum do differently from Saturday? “Honestly, I just tried to be a little more aggressive,” the 22-year-old guard said. “I watched the film and a lot of the times coming off the ball screen, I could attack a little bit more. That’s something I tried to do tonight - get in the paint, not necessarily just looking for my shot, but getting in the paint and trying to look for one of my teammates. But tonight, the lane opened up for me a lot. So I was able to get in there and get to the hole and try to get to the line.”