Road Reaction: Hornets 105, Kings 96

After a solid game against the Dallas Mavericks, the Sacramento Kings fell flat in New Orleans.  The Hornets shot an amazing 56 percent from the field on their way to 105-96 victory.

Jason Smith led the way for New Orleans, finishing with 22 points and six rebounds on 10-for-12 shooting.  Marco Belinelli scored 21 points, while Xavier Henry dropped 14 points on 6-for-7 shooting off the Hornets’ bench.  This was just the 16th win of the season for New Orleans, who have struggled with injuries all year long.

Marcus Thornton played inspired ball in his home state of Louisiana.  The former Hornet finished with a game-high 25 points in his second game back from injury.  Jason Thompson anchored the post with 18 points on 8-for-12 shooting and kicked in seven rebounds.

The Kings have now lost six straight and drop to 19-40 on the season.


Notes and Analysis

  • DeMarcus Cousinswas off tonight.  After a dominant performance in Dallas, Cousins scored just seven points and grabbed four rebounds in 20 foul plagued minutes.  The Kings’ center shot just 3-for-12 from the field and looked disinterested the entire game.
  • The Kings got a strong performance off the bench from Terrence Williams who finished with 16 points on 5-for-11 shooting, including nine points in the fourth quarter.
  • Tyreke Evans showed off his versatility in this one.  The third year wing scored 19 points, dished out a game-high eight assists and kicked in five rebounds.
  • Jason Thompson had a bounce-back game, finishing with 18 points and seven rebounds in 32 minutes.  While his numbers were solid, he did a poor job of limiting Smith on defense.
  •  Speaking of Smith, the Kings made him look like a world beater.  The forward out of Colorado State hit jumpers, finished the break and even made a few nice moves in the post on his way to a 22-point performance.  Smith has given the Kings fits in the past, but as a hustle guy.  Tonight was something special.
  • The Kings’ two rookie point guards struggled mightily.  Both shot 1-for-5 from the field, but  Jimmer Fredette scored four points while Isaiah Thomas finished with only two.  Thomas did kick in seven assists, but the duo had a rough night on both ends of the floor.
  • You can chalk Marco Belinelli’s 21-point night to the Kings porous defense.  The veteran guard shot just nine times, hitting on five of those attempts, while adding 8-for-9 from the free throw line.
  • Stat of the Night: The Hornets were on fire tonight, shooting a scorching 56 percent from the field.  The Kings had 83 field goal attempts to just 68 for the Hornets, but the home team made the most of their chances.

Injury Update

Hassan Whiteside went down in the first quarter with a sprained right ankle.  X-rays were negative, but he was unable to return to the game.


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About: James Ham

James Ham provides coverage through news analysis and in-depth interviews with Kings players and staff. James is also one of the producers behind the award-winning, independent documentary "Small Market, Big Heart". James graduated UC Davis with a degree in history and is happily married with two children.