Heh. I mostly write obtuse and silly titles to amuse myself. Otherwise, what’s the point? That said, sometimes with young dumb teams ugly wins are about the best you are going to get. And, well, an ugly win that was far too difficult and came down to two missed shots by Steph Curry and Klay Thompson are a tough way to get victories. Against the top tier, it won’t happen. And thus, so it goes.
Here is the boxscore.
Onto the bullets….
* DeMarcus Cousins looked much better than he had all season tonight. Shot well, did well defensive rebounding, and the offensive rebounds came off others misses. Not a bad night, and more like this will make me happy. The thing that made me happy was that Cousins led the Kings in minute with 34 minutes, and it could have been more if Smart felt like subbing Cousins in earlier. That’s the actual important news in my mind more than anything else.
* Tyreke Evans really struggled tonight on both ends. Struggled off screens defensively, and couldn’t get his offense going. The good news is that there is another game coming down the pike, and games like this do happen to everyone at some point. One interesting note is that Tyreke was perfect from the free throw line coming into the game (8-8) but missed 1 of 2 tonight to end that streak. Oh well….90% from the line isn’t bad though. Silver linings…..
* Aaron Brooks had a mixed night I thought, but the two shots down the stretch really helped the Kings where they weren’t getting much offensively and had little going on a possession. On the other hand, Brooks went 5-8 from the floor which is nice. Combined with Isaiah Thomas who went 4-8 from the floor for 10 points (Brooks had 12 points), that’s 22 points between your PG’s right there. While both combined for only 2 assists, that’s pretty typical of this group as they struggle creating shots that lead to assists.
* Speaking of Isaiah, who had no assists and two turnovers, he’s struggling to get guys shots in the rhythm of the offense, Isaiah is not alone though so I’m not terribly concerned. Plus this group is where assists go to die anyway.
* Chuck Hayes was outstanding both defensively and rebounding. This is the Chuck Hayes the Kings thought they were getting, and the rumbling about Hayes seems to have quieted down for the moment. With good reason of course.
* Thomas Robinson is coming along it seems a little bit game by game. Everytime out he shows something new. There was a block, some banging with Carl Landry, and some quality rebounds. In only 12 minutes no less. I think T-Rob will be okay. Call it a hunch.
* Jimmer Fredette had a nice 2 minute stretch to end the 1st half where he had two made baskets and a free throw. Jimmer never made it back into the game, but if that Jimmer keeps showing up that Jimmer won’t have a problem getting minutes nearly as often as the rookie Jimmer did. Jimmer’s biggest problem is figuring out a way to carve a place in the rotation ahead of Aaron Brooks, and right now that seems unlikely.
* Marcus Thornton ebbs and flows. The Bayou Bulldog ebbed in the 1st half and flowed in the 2nd half. And so it goes Detective Lieutenant….
* I was happy with Jason Thompson’s contribution even though it doesn’t seem much upon first glance. Jt had a tough assignment in David Lee (a bad matchup IMO), and had some moments in the 3rd quarter that led the Kings to getting a 16 point lead at one point. Again, not all value is numerical or can be found in a box score. Sometimes the chemistry is just as important, and JT is one of the chemistry guys on this team.
* Travis Outlaw did not impress me.
* James Johnson has had a rough start offensively for this team, and tonight was no exception. Patience will be needed for JJ to find his groove. I think he can, but not if you are expecting Peja Stojakovic to show up one day. That just isn’t James Johnson. I would love to see a lot of things change up with the shots JJ takes, and one would be to see less long 2’s. But, one day at a time I suppose, and there are bigger issue’s with this team than Johnson.
* The Kings outrebounded the Warriors 43-38 including a 10 to 7 edge in offensive rebounding. Along with 2 more defensive rebounds, that’s a start to this team improving in the defensive rebounding area.
* The Kings held to the Warriors to 92 points on 39% shooting. Yes, I know. This team is right now in the top 5 in eFG percentage defense. That’s a great start to improving this team.
* Coming into the game, the Kings had the 7th best DRtg at 98.1 points per game and the 30th best ORtg at 89.4 points per game. (Offensive and Defensive Rating is points per 100 possessions.) You can bet that both of those things will see small bumps at worst.
* It bears repeating, but this team will get a lot of it’s offense through the defense. If the defense can get the Kings into transition and often, and the more frequently the Kings get easy baskets, the better this season will go. There are a lot of things this team needs to work on no doubt, but there was no way that a thriving half court offense that was reminiscent of the Kings of 10 years ago was going to appear. This group doesn’t have those kinds of players, and worse it’s best shooters are all small G’s. This was never going to be a deep shooting team that would wow you. It’s just the way it is. You might not like it, but get used to it. That’s how this team has to play. It’s going to be ugly, defensive, and outright offensive to watch at times. And guess what? There’s nothing wrong with that if this team is improving in a real way.
Not aesthetically pleasing game recap out.