CK Press Box Report – Sacramento Kings 117, Portland Trail Blazers 100

by Jonathan Santiago & James Ham

Quotes of the Game

Aaron Brooks on whether he’d prefer to come off the bench or start:

It’s just bringing it, like I said. ¬†It’s just maximizing opportunity. ¬†When you’re open, you hit shots. ¬†The less minutes you play, the more energy you can use so I’m happy that I’m in a situation where we have good players. ¬†Tyreke (Evans), Isaiah (Thomas)¬†and Jimmer (Fredette)¬†are good point guards, so it makes us a lot more dangerous.

Keith Smart on Marcus Thornton coming off the bench:

Once he got going, he became part of the focal point in that (second) group, and we will see where it goes from there. ¬†He might be back in the lineup for the next game, but I want to mix these combinations. ¬†I want to take the time and get every different combination I can possibly have, with every guy playing the game, and see who they’re playing with and what mistakes they’re having on offense and defense together. ¬†Then, I will come together and decide on a group that I have to decide on…

Notes and Analysis

  • Thornton may not like coming off the bench, but he should.¬† The high scoring guard out of LSU was electric, leading all scorers with 23 in the victory.¬† There is a good chance that Thornton will start the season as the Kings sixth man, but count on him finishing most games.
  • Jimmer struggled on the defensive end, but finished strong.¬† The second-year guard played 16 minutes, finishing with 11 points on 3-for-6 shooting.¬† In the waning moments, Jimmer stole a ball and hit both his freebies after getting fouled.¬† Moments later, he¬†buried¬†a big three to ice the game.
  • Aaron Brooks started for the Kings and was stellar.¬† On a team filled with offensive weapons, Brooks brings something different.¬† He finished with 16 points on 6-for-8 shooting in just 21 minutes.
  • DeMarcus Cousins toyed with the Blazers.¬† It didn’t matter who they threw at the Kings big man, he dominated them.¬† For what it’s worth, Cousins gave J.J. Hickson an earful the entire game.¬† You’re welcome Kings fans.
  • Francisco Garcia received a DNP-CD in game No. 1, but Monday, he came in and quickly hit two three-pointers and played tough, hard-nosed defense on Nic Batum.¬† Cisco looked fresh and healthy, which is a good sign for the longest tenured King.
  • Stat of the Night:¬†Ten Kings recorded assists and the team finished with a total of 22.¬† The ball is moving freely from one side of the court to the next. So far, so good.

- James Ham

Additional reaction – At the buzzer: Sacramento Kings 117, Portland Trail Blazers 100

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