Road Reaction: Kings 88, Spurs 86

Recap

Box Score

The Sacramento Kings walked into San Antonio and pulled off what seemed to be improbable.

Coming into Friday’s game, the Spurs were 9-0 at home, while the Kings had yet to win back-to-back games.   None of that mattered as Sacramento rallied late and beat San Antonio 88-86 at the AT&T Center.

Tyreke Evans just missed a triple-double, finishing with 23 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists for the Kings.  DeMarcus Cousins and Jason Thompson each notched double-doubles, while Marcus Thorntons 17 points complimented Evans’ backcourt production.

Tony Parker led the way for the Spurs, almost single-handedly willing his team to victory. Meanwhile,  Tim Duncan scored just 10 points, but kicked in 10 rebounds.

The two-point victory is a milestone for the Kings, who hadn’t beat the Spurs in San Antonio since April 6, 2006.

Notes and Analysis

  • John Salmons struggled mightily throughout, but came up with two huge fourth quarter jumpers en route to victory.  The veteran wing scored seven points in 30 minutes of play.
  • Three Kings finished with double-doubles – Cousins with 17 points and 13 rebounds, Thompson with 10 points and 10 rebounds and Evans with 23 points and 11 rebounds.
  • The Kings bench struggled with their shot.  Donté Greene, Francisco Garcia, J.J. Hickson, Isaiah Thomas and Jimmer Fredette hit only six of 22 field goal attempts and failed to register an assist.
  • The Kings continued to struggle from the outside.  Coming into the game, the Kings ranked 29th in the league in 3-point percentage, shooting just 26 percent on the season.  Tonight they shot an abysmal 5-for-21 (23.8 percent) in the win over San Antonio.
  • The Kings fell back to their early season form from the line, hitting just 11 of their 19 free throws for an atrocious 57.9 percent.  The Spurs went 19-for-21 from the line, keeping the game close until the final horn.
  • The two highly touted rookies, Jimmer and Kawhi Leonard, both struggled.  Leonard missed all three of his shots and finished with only four points, while Jimmer went one of four, hitting only a three pointer to finish with just three points.
  • The Kings picked up two technical fouls on the evening.  Cousins chirped at officials after a no call, while Kings assistant Bobby Jackson picked up a surprise first T as a coach early in the game.
  • Stat of Night: The Kings out-shot the Spurs on their home floor 43.4 percent to 37.8 percent and held San Antonio under 90 points at home for the first time this season.  The win ended the Spurs perfect home record at nine games – their second best start in franchise history.

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About: James Ham

James Ham is co-owner and senior editor of Cowbell Kingdom, providing extensive Kings coverage through news analysis, in-depth interviews with players and staff and daily coverage of breaking news. Along with providing original content for the site, including the Cowbell Kingdom Podcast and his weekly Sunday Musings column, James also provides game day coverage for NBA.com and is one of the producers behind the award-winning, independent documentary "Small Market, Big Heart".