Charting the Kings offensive progress in San Antonio

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Did the Kings make progress offensively last night against the San Antonio Spurs?

In terms of plays ran, yes.

According to mySynergySports, a majority of their offense came from:

  1. Pick and Rolls
  2. Spot-up Shots
  3. Transition
  4. Isolations

The number of P&Rs they ran is significant.  Overall this season, 17.3 percent of their offense has come from sets highlighting the two-man game.  Last night, 27.2 percent of the plays called were screen and rolls – a nearly 10-percent improvement.

Updated with additional analysis by James Ham

Against San Antonio, the Kings showed an ability to get into their offense earlier, giving themselves enough time to run more play sets.  The Kings have all the makings to be an outstanding pick and roll team – interior and high post presence, slashers and perimeter shooters.  But in most games, they’ve wasted at least 10 seconds of shot clock bringing the ball to a position where they can initiate their offense.

The Kings rely on isolation plays too often.  They should feed both DeMarcus Cousins and Jason Thompson in the post, working from an inside-out approach.  The Kings have strong isolation players in Tyreke Evans, John Salmons and Marcus Thornton, but these players need to realize they can get better shots in pick and roll sets or on cuts without the ball.

Another area the Kings need to improve on is shot selection. The Kings are last in the league in three-point shooting percentage at 25.7 percent, but fourth in attempts.  Until that percentage improves, the team should look for higher percentage shots, closer to the basket and not long set shots.

The Kings are taking a lot of long two-point attempts as well. Not to single out one particular player, but according to, 69 percent of J.J. Hickson’s shots are jumpers, but his eFG% on those shots is only 39 percent.  Salmons’ numbers are even worst. Eighty-nine percent of his shots are jumpers and his eFG% on those shots is just 32.7 percent.  Salmons is hitting an incredible 84.6 percent of his shots from close range, but unfortunately, he shoots only 10 percent of his shots from that area on the floor.

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Jonathan Santiago
Jonathan Santiago serves Cowbell Kingdom as senior editor specializing in writing, podcasting and video production. He also handles the majority of CK’s day-to-day beat coverage of the Kings.

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