Kings Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Sacramento Kings and the NBA.

February 12, 2011
In-game blog (Kings vs. Thunder)

FINALThunder 99, Kings 97

*Tyreke Evans missed a three pointer with 0.8 seconds to play and Omri Casspi missed a tip-in at the buzzer. The Kings rallied from 13 points down in the fourth to have a chance to tie or win after Kevin Durant missed two free throws with 5.8 seconds to play. The Thunder led 89-76 with 8:01 to play.

*Evans got a clean look at the basket but it was just short. After driving and not getting a foul call Wednesday against Dallas, looked like Evans wasn't risking leaving the game up to the officials. I couldn't ask Evans about the shot because he had already left the locker room when reporters entered for interviews. After never doing that as a rookie or this season, Evans has down that twice in the last three games.

*When asked if he ever thought about taking the ball out of Evans' hands late, Kings coach Paul Westphal said the final play wasn't drawn up specifically for Evans and that Donte Greene had options inbounding the ball. Evans became the best option because he was open and the Thunder took away DeMarcus Cousins in the post.

*Evans finished with 30 points and nine rebounds. DeMarcus Cousins had 14 points and 12 rebounds. Durant led all scorers with 35 points. Omri Casspi had 14 points and nine rebounds.

*The Kings have lost five in a row and went 1-5 on their homestand. Their next seven games are on the road.

*The turnovers were the difference tonight. The Kings had 19 that led to 26 points for Oklahoma City. The Kings aren't good enough to give a team as good as the Thunder that many points of turnovers, but they nearly overcame it.

THIRD QUARTERThunder 75, Kings 72

*DeMarcus Cousins picked up three fouls in 3:49 but the Kings managed to close the game with out him. Tyreke Evans scored seven points in the third. Samuel Dalembert replaced Cousins and chipped in six points. Evans leads the Kings with 20 points.

*Though the shot a combined four for 13 in the third, Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant each managed to score seven points.

Durant leads all scorers with 25 points. Westbrook has 22 points. No other Thunder player has scored in double figures.

*The Kings were able to cut into the lead in part by not giving away the ball. After 11 first-half turnovers, the Kings had only three in the third.

*If the Kings could win this game it would be a nice way to close Arco Arena. The next time the Kings play here the building will be officially known as Power Balance Pavilion.

(Correction: The Kings have one more game here against the Clippers before Arco becomes PBP).

HALFTIME Thunder 54, Kings 45

*The Thunder is a much better team than the Kings and Sacramento, but the Kings are helping the Thunder with 11 turnovers. Oklahoma City has 13 points off those turnovers.

*Oklahoma City's All Stars are too much for the Kings. Kevin Durant has 18 points. Russell Westbrook has 15 points. Westbrook has been active defensively with two steals.

*Tyreke Evans has 13 points and three assists to lead the Kings. But he also has three turnovers. DeMarcus Cousins has nine points six rebounds.

*This has been Carl Landry's best game off the bench in a few games. He has eight points and two rebounds. Landry's playing time has been impacted by the Kings using Cousins and Dalembert in the game together.

FIRST QUARTERThunder 27, Kings 24

*Kevin Durant is really good. Not that we didn't know that, but he's showing that with 12 points, three rebounds and two assists in the first quarter. He's the NBA's leading scorer and showing why, making five of seven shots.

*The Kings led by as many as eight points before Durant got going. Tyreke Evans leads the Kings with eight points. DeMarcus Cousins and Omri Casspi each have six points.

*The Kings are on pace for 16 turnovers, which also helped the Thunder get back in the game. Oklahoma City has seven points off those turnovers. The Thunder has one turnover.

*The difference is a halfcourt shot by Eric Maynor at the buzzer to end the first. Maynor is one of the guards the Kings have been rumored to have interest in via trade. Before the game Kings coach Paul Westphal said he didn't' expect the Kings to make a deal before the Feb. 24 trading deadline.

Then again, didn't we think this time a year ago that Kevin Martin wasn't going anywhere?

--Jason Jones

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