CK Press Box Report: Kings 115, Timberwolves 99

by Jonathan Santiago & James Ham

The Sacramento Kings played unselfishly for 48 minutes and were greatly rewarded.  Six Kings players scored in double figures and Sacramento rolled to a 115-99 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves Sunday at Power Balance Pavilion.

“These guys are a unique group,” said Kings head coach Keith Smart after the win.  “They’re showing us, everyone, myself, that the potential is there.  Now we just have to keep growing and eventually it’s going to be the right thing for us.”

On par with Friday’s performance against the Boston Celtics, Marcus Thornton had another outstanding game.  The Kings guard posted 16 of his 24 points in the second half to once again lead the Kings in scoring.

Kevin Love led the Timberwolves, who’ve lost four of their last five games, in scoring  and rebounds with 21 points and 11 boards.  Five other T-Wolves  also scored double figures in the loss.

The victory improves the Kings to 16-29 overall and 12-9 at home.  The 12th win at PBP tops last season’s home victory total of 11.

Notes and Analysis

  • Jason Thompson continued his strong play, notching his third straight double-double.  The fourth year veteran is now shooting an incredible 83 percent (24-for-29) from the field in the last three games.  On a side note, his parents have been in town all week to watch this explosion.
  • Chuck Hayes had one of his better games in a Sacramento Kings jersey.  The veteran forward/center, finished with a season-high 12 points and eight rebounds in 27 productive minutes.
  • Rookie point guard Isaiah Thomas continues to excel for the Kings.  With Tyreke Evans missing yet another game with injury, Thomas has filled the void in Evans’ absence.  Tonight he finished with 18 points on 6-for-10 shooting and he shot 4-for-6 from behind the arc.
  • Kevin Love recorded his 38th double-double of the season.  While his numbers look good, the Timberwolves all-star shot only 7-for-20 from the field and missed all but one of his five 3-point attempts.
  • We have another John Salmons sighting.  After struggling through much of the first half of the season, Salmons appears to be hitting his stride.  Starting in place of Evans, he finished with 15 points and played exceptional defense.
  • With Evans missing in action, Marcus Thornton continues to pick up the scoring slack.  After dropping 36 on the Celtics in the Kings last game, Thornton scored up a game-high 24 points in today’s win.  He has also registered a total of nine steals in the last two games, after getting just one in the previous four games combined.
  • Rookie Tyler Honeycutt got in the game tonight.  And while he scored a modest two points in roughly five minutes of play,  they came on a spectacular dunk in traffic off a Jimmer Fredette pass.
  • Michael Beasley showed fans why he can be so infuriating as a pro.  After scorching the Kings for 11 first half points in just 10 minutes of action, he hit only 1-for-8 in the second half, finishing with 13 points in 26 minutes.
  • The Kings got a good look at last year’s second overall pick Derrick Williams.  He is athletic, skilled and very much a player without a natural NBA position.  The Wolves used him with Beasley in a long, athletic second unit.  However, it’s hard to see why he isn’t starting over Wesley Johnson at small forward.  Williams finished with 16 points and nine rebounds in 33 minutes.
  • Stat of the Night: For a third consecutive game, the Kings have recorded 20 or more assists.  They’ve accomplished this feat in six of their last eight games.
Injury Report
Tyreke Evans (sprained left ankle), Francisco Garcia (sprained right wrist) and J.J. Hickson (back spasms) all did not play for a second consecutive game.


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