Kings Blog and Q&A

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

February 9, 2012
Kings beat Thunder, 106-101

Head coach Keith Smart talks about Marcus Thornton's late three-pointers, Donte Greene's contributions off the bench and other topics following Thursday night's game.

Tyreke Evans scored 22 points and made some key late free throws, Donte Greene led the Kings' bench players with 10 points and the Kings closed the game on a 19-6 run to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday night at Power Balance Pavilion, 106-101.

The Kings trailed 95-87 with just under six minutes remaining in the game. But they rallied to tie it at 97-97 on the second of back-to-back three-pointers by Marcus Thornton and made 9 of 12 free throws down the stretch to close out the win.

DeMarcus Cousins had 19 points and 9 rebounds, and Jason Thompson added 11 points and 10 rebounds for the Kings, who improved to 10-16.

It was the Kings' fourth win in five games, and it came in front of an announced sellout crowd and national TV audience against a Thunder team with the best record in the Western Conference.

Russell Westbrook scored a game-high 33 points and Kevin Durant added 27 points and 8 rebounds for Oklahoma City, which saw its record drop to 20-6. The Thunder shot 48.1 percent from the field, but committed 23 turnovers.

The Kings, who shot 40.4 percent, converted those turnovers into 28 points and overcame 17 blocked shots, including 10 by Thunder forward Serge Ibaka.

Though their shots were often contested inside, the Kings outscored the Thunder in the paint, 60-34. The Kings also received good minutes from their bench, which outscored Oklahoma City's reserves, 34-19.

"Considering how well we played today, we didn't shoot the ball well," said Kings head coach Keith Smart. "The one thing about this group is that they continue to show that they make some plays that can take some good NBA players out of their comfort zone. They made those guys work for what they got tonight."

Thornton had 15 points before fouling out with 25.7 seconds left and the Kings leading 103-99.

Isaiah Thomas checked in for Thornton and, after the Thunder inbounded the ball, Thomas harassed Westbrook into committing a turnover. It was originally ruled Thunder ball, but the officials reversed that ruling after a long video review.

The Kings scored 100 or more points for the fifth time this season -- and the third time in four games -- and improved to 5-0 n those games.



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