Richardson’s full breakdown after key victory against the Cavaliers
The Sacramento Kings won a close one against the Cleveland Cavaliers in overtime, 116-112. Kings fans will be pleased to know that they have found a gem in rookie Malachi Richardson who had 12 points, three rebounds and one assist in 14 minutes of play. That is why he is tonight’s Reno Dodge Power Performer.
After coming off a 109-104 victory against the Detroit Pistons, Richardson played 14 minutes, nodding in five points off the bench. But it was his smooth jump shot and high basketball IQ in limited action that opened many eyes around the NBA. He continued showing why he belongs with the big boys tonight against the defending NBA champions.
His contributions on the court were noted quickly, especially in the first half. Early on, there was a sense of urgency for him to start attacking the basket. He finished with nine points at the half.
Another thing to note is his ability to run the pick and roll at such a high level. Check out this play:
Splash! 👌🏻 pic.twitter.com/JOJutRqtjp
— Cowbell Kingdom (@Cowbell_Kingdom) January 26, 2017
During the 11-minute mark in the fourth quarter, Richardson and Willie Cauley-Stein ran a screen and roll that led to an open 3-pointer for Richardson. Cauley-Stein did a great job of slipping that led to the open three. But it also helps when you have such a quick release and Richardson definitely has one.
Richardson’s inexperience would make you cringe when it comes to taking shots within the flow of the offense because most rookies take ill-advised shots at the wrong times. All of Richardson’s shots were taken within the flow of the offense.
That’s a good characteristic to have as a rookie. He shot 83 percent from the floor and 50 percent from three. Safe to say, if he keeps this level of play, the Kings certainly could use his contributions on the floor.
The Kings road trip continues as they face the Indiana Pacers on Friday. The Kings look to even the series with the Pacers before heading home on Feb. 3 to take on Devin Booker and the Phoenix Suns.