Road Reaction: Kings 114, Bobcats 88
The Sacramento Kings (21-43) dropped into Charlotte for a Sunday matinee against the Bobcats (7-56) – the NBA’s worst team. I believe that Kings play-by-play announcer Grant Napear said it best via his twitter account:
I call games for a team that only has 20 wins but with that said…boy is Charlotte awful!!! Worst team I’ve seen in my 24 years in NBA
— Grant Napear(@GrantNapearShow) April 22, 2012
Winning 114-88, the Kings handed the lowly Bobcats their 20th consecutive loss. Charlotte hasn’t won a game since St Patrick’s Day and judging by Sunday afternoon’s performance, they probably won’t win anytime soon.
DeMarcus Cousinsled the way with 29 points and 10 rebounds for the Kings, but he picked up a technical in the second quarter that will cost him Tuesday night’s match-up against the Thunder. Tyreke Evans woke up out of his funk, giving the Kings a solid 22 point effort on 10-for-11 shooting. Power forward Jason Thompson made a run at a triple-double, finishing with 14 points, 11 rebounds and a career-high seven assists.
Byron Mullens was active early, but finished with just 13 points and eight rebounds in the loss. Rookie Kemba Walker also finished with 13 and added a game-high 11 assists.
Notes and Analysis
- Besides his near triple-double performance, Thompson also added five steals in the victory. The Kings big man will be a restricted free agent this summer and is bound to draw a lot of interest. The 25-year old out of Rider has improved by leaps and bounds in his fourth NBA season.
- After going scoreless in Friday’s loss to the Thunder, coach Smart went back to Travis Outlaw and the veteran responded. Although his numbers aren’t gaudy, Outlaw scored all eight of his points in the first half while the game was still interesting.
- Jimmer Fredette continued his recent stretch of strong play, kicking in 11 points off the Kings’ bench. Kemba Walker is getting more minutes than Jimmer, but I’m not sure anyone would want to play for a seven-win team.
- Amidst rumors circulating that the Kings will listen to offers for Evans, the third-year player out of Memphis let his game do the talking Sunday. Evans is one of the best slashers in the game, which was on display against the Bobcats, but he needs to figure out how to play without the ball in his hands. He is extremely talented, but I wouldn’t be shocked if he has a new address next season.
- Derrick Brown scored 13 points and grabbed seven rebounds for Charlotte. The former Xavier standout has seemingly found a home with the Bobcats after a disappointing start to his career.
- Most people will eventually forget that Bismack Biyombo was drafted by the Kings and traded to the Bobcats in a three-way deal on draft night. While he is raw, Biyombo projects as a defensive stopper, which may have suited the Kings long-term needs more than Jimmer.
- The Kings led by as many as 35 and never trailed in this one. That was the largest lead of the season for the Kings.
- The Kings also scored 78 points in the paint and tallied 38 on the break.
- Stat of the Night: The Sacramento Kings shot 55 percent from the field and only turned the ball over eight times in the victory. The Bobcats are a historically bad team on both ends of the floor.
Marcus Thornton missed his second straight game with a bruised left quad.