Kings Fall Flat, Suffer Costly Loss To Shorthanded Lakers
Sacramento’s five-game home winning-streak was snapped on Friday night
With the Golden State Warriors suffering a 50-point loss to the Toronto Raptors, the Sacramento Kings were in a strong position to take control of the 10th spot int he Western Conference standings on Friday night.
The Los Angeles Lakers, who played without the services of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Andre Drummond, would throw a wrench right into that possibility.
De’Aaron Fox had his worst shooting performance of the season, Los Angeles was red-hot from the three-point line and the Kings would suffer a depleting 115-94 loss at Golden 1 Center in the first game of a back-to-back.
Sacramento (22-27) has lost two games in-a-row, with the Milwaukee Bucks coming into town on Saturday night.
Los Angeles would burst out of the gates to take an early 24-11 lead in the first quarter, but the Kings bench would battle back to cut the deficit to 29-27 heading into the second quarter.
The Sacramento starters were not dialed in at the beginning of action on Friday, immediately allowing the Lakers to go on a 15-5 run to begin the second period.
Harrison Barnes would be the pulse of the Kings offense in the first half, scoring 22 points on seven-of-eight shooting from the field (three-of-four from three-point range) to keep the game from getting out of hand.
Trailing 65-53 to open up the second half, the Kings defense would struggle to contain a Lakers offense that would shoot 60-percent from three-point range over the first three quarters.
Los Angeles would not slow down, taking a 91-76 lead into the fourth quarter and going on to lead by as many as 24 points to hand Sacramento an extremely costly loss with the Milwaukee Bucks coming into Golden 1 Center on Saturday night.
The Lakers would finish Friday’s game 17-of-33 from three-point range, just narrowly missing a season-high (19) in three-point field goals.
Along with being killed on the perimeter, Sacramento had no answer in the paint as they would be out-rebounded 54-38 by Los Angeles.
It was an ugly game at the worst possible time for a Kings team that seemed to be on a roll after winning five-straight and seven of their last eight games. After suffering ugly losses in back-to-back games, one has to wonder if this could be the start of another unfortunate stretch of play.
Will the real Sacramento Kings please stand up?
Rounding out the box score
De’Aaron Fox was not himself on Friday night, as the 23-year-old would finish an abysmal five-of-20 from the field to score 12 points–his lowest scoring output since February 21st.
The only Sacramento starter with a positive night offensively was Harrison Barnes, who would finish with 26 points on nine-of-10 shooting in the loss.
Like Fox, Richaun Holmes would have an uncharacteristic performance, struggling from the field (four-of-10) to finish with 11 points an seven rebounds.
Reserve guard Delon Wright scored 10 of his 13 points in the third period to lead all Kings bench scorers.
Kings center Hassan Whiteside missed his fifth-straight game on Saturday due to a sore knee.
Whiteside’s knee is “feeling better” and the big man is expected to return very soon, according to head coach Luke Walton.
Marvin Bagley III is getting closer to a return from his fractured fourth metacarpal, with an update on the young forward expected to be released in the next week.
Sacramento will return to Golden 1 Center in less than 24 hours to complete their back-to-back with Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night.
The Bucks handily defeated the Kings back on February 21st, winning by a final of 128-115 behind a 38-point effort from the two-time MVP Antetokounmpo.
Get all of your Kings vs Bucks coverage right here on Sports 1140 KHTK, starting with pregame coverage at 6:30pm PST prior to a 7:00pm PST tip-off.
Upcoming Kings Schedule
- April 3 vs Milwaukee Bucks
- April 5 @ Minnesota Timberwolves
- April 8 vs Detroit Pistons
- April 10 @ Utah Jazz
- April 12 @ New Orleans