OKLAHOMA CITY 116, KINGS 113
Kings week ahead (with weekly Fire and Ice feature)
Kings plus feature on Shareef Abdur-Rahim's coaching life
Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson more involved in Kings' arena efforts
Marty Mac on Kings' disastrous defense
My head is still ringing. Oklahoma City fans are loud, even if Spencer Hawes doesn't want to admit it. As I wrote about in Monday's Bee, Hawes was quite outspoken about his disdain for the Seattle SuperSonics relocating to Oklahoma City. He called it a "travesty."
But for the entire first quarter, it looked like the Thunder would make the Kings the mockery as Oklahoma City outscored them 34-23.
"Well, another disappointing loss, needless to say, however, the guys did respond from halftime," Kings interim coach said before repeating a well-worn quote. "We have to learn a lesson that we can't spot a team 15, 16 points. We aren't that good."
Indeed. But here are a few good notes from my one-and-done trip to Oklahoma City.
* Bobby Jackson did not make the trip to Oklahoma City after he welcomed his fifth child into the world with wife Dona on Saturday. He will rejoin the team Monday.
* Beno Udrih looked like the point guard who shined last year for the Kings. Udrih scored 29 points, including 22 in the second half.
"Beno was great," said Kevin Martin. "That was the Beno hopefully we get used to. He made a difference in the game, especially in the second half."
* Kings consultant Pete Carril is making this entire three-game road trip. We chatted before Sunday's game as we took in the scene at Ford Center. Carril had never been inside the facility. Every so often during our conversation, the legendary "Coachie" would wave his arms to signal to Kings assistant coach Shareef Abdur-Rahim what he wanted Spencer Hawes to work on during pregame drills.
At one point, Carril pulled out a notepad from his pocket to diagram something before excusing himself and heading Hawes' way.
This guy doesn't stop working.
* Beat reporter Sam Amick will pick up the next two games. However, I managed to get Amick involved during the game. With the Internet down throughout the Ford Center, reporters were scrambling to get stories sent. In-game quarterly updates featured in The Bee were sent via text message from me to Amick to be posted online. The Associated Press was forced to dictate their game story, while the remaining media scattered outside the arena searching for a signal.