Road Reaction: Oklahoma City Thunder 113, Sacramento Kings 103

Updated at 9:19 pm PT

In the final game of a week-long road trip, the Sacramento Kings looked up to the challenge against the Oklahoma City Thunder through the first 12 minutes.  But in the end, the Thunder were just too good, handing the Kings their third loss in a row by the score of 113-103.

Notes and Analysis

  • Isaiah Thomas gave the Kings a great lift late in this game.  After sitting the entire first half, the second-year guard scored an impressive 26 points on 10-for-13 shooting in just 16 minutes.  With the team struggling again, it might be time for Keith Smart to turn back to Thomas as his starter.
  • Tyreke Evans really got up for this game tonight.  In his second game back from injury, Evans looked energized and up to the task of taking on the 19-4 Thunder.  He finished with 21 points and appears to have gotten his wind back.
  • Jason Thompson played an outstanding game against a very good front line.  Thompson scored 15 points on 6-for-7 shooting, grabbed six rebounds and handed out a team-high four assists in 29 minutes of action.
  • Both John Salmons and DeMarcus Cousins struggled from the field tonight.  Salmons hit just one of his seven shot attempts, while Cousins finished with 10 points and seven rebounds, but went 3-for-12 from the field.
  • Kevin Durant was his typical amazing self, scoring a game-high 31 points, but he turned the ball over six times.   He was flanked by ex-King Kevin Martin who lit it up in the first half and finished with 18 points off the Thunder bench.
  • Serge Ibaka has really developed as an NBA player.  The 23-year-old power forward out of the Congo finished with an impressive 18-point-11-rebound double-double
  • Stat of the Night: The Thunder went an impressive 22-for-22 from the free throw line tonight.  The Kings weren’t too bad themselves, finishing 28-for-31 from the stripe.

Three answers to three questions pondered

1. What kind of performance will we see out of DeMarcus Cousins?

It’s hard to give an honest assessment on Cousins’ performance tonight.  He started out strong, but when the game started to slip away from the Kings, his shot selection went to hell in a hand-basket.  It wasn’t a great performance for the big fella and he sat for most of the fourth quarter when the Kings made a big run.

2. Can the Kings limit their fouls against the Thunder?

The Kings were the aggressor in this game, shooting seven more free throws than the Thunder.  Thompson and Thomas were the only two Kings to get to the four-foul level in the loss.

3. How will the Kings’ defense fair against the Thunder’s high-powered offense?

The Kings played about as well as expected on the defensive end.  They gave up 113 points, but the Thunder are incredibly talented on offense.  The Kings gave up 61 points in the first half, but only 52 in the second as they made their late run.

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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 is one of the producers behind the award-winning, independent documentary film "Small Market, Big Heart".