Kings Blog and Q&A

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

March 22, 2012
In-game blog: Kings vs. Jazz

Kings head coach Keith Smart addresses the media following the Kings' loss to the Utah Jazz at Power Balance Pavilion.

FINAL
Jazz 103, Kings 102

Al Jefferson scored on a put-back off a Devin Harris miss with 0.9 seconds left to allow the Utah Jazz to escape Power Balance Pavilion with the win.

It was only the Jazz's fifth field goal of the fourth quarter, as the Kings came back from a 10-point deficit.

The Kings took a one-point lead with 4.1 seconds left on a lay-up by Marcus Thornton, who had hit a big three-pointer just seconds before.

But Jefferson corralled Harris's miss and laid it in. He finished with 26 points and seven rebounds.

"We did everything we could, got ourselves back in the game based on how we were playing," said Kings head coach Keith Smart. "I knew it would be hard to close out this last home game, but our guys fought to get back into it and there were a bunch of plays we actually made down the stretch to get us in a good position.

"We were one rebound away from taking it home. Didn't happen, but our guys are still playing well."

Gordon Hayward had 18 points and seven rebounds for the Jazz, while Derrick Favors added 12 points and 10 rebounds off the bench.

Tyreke Evans had a team-high 25 points for the Kings off the bench.

DeMarcus Cousins finished with 22 points and 18 rebounds, and Jason Thompson also had a double-double with 19 points and 15 rebounds.

Thompson, though, appeared to injure his left leg on Jefferson's game-winning play and had to be helped off the court into the locker room.

The Kings finished 5-4 on their franchise-long nine-game homestand.

THIRD QUARTER
Jazz 87, Kings 77

The Jazz keep making shots and the Kings, despite getting a strong quarter from DeMarcus Cousins, haven't been able to close the gap.

Cousins scored 12 points in the third quarter and now has 18 points to go with 12 rebounds. 

Jason Thompson also has a double-double with a team-high 19 points and 13 rebounds.

The Kings, though, are still shooting 42 percent, compared to 54 percent for the Jazz.

Al Jefferson leads Utah with 22 points. Gordon Hayward has 14 points and Derrick Favors has added 10 points and eight rebounds off the bench.

Thompson picked up a technical foul with five minutes left in the quarter.

HALFTIME
Jazz 58, Kings 48

The finale of the nine-game homestand isn't going well.

The Kings aren't getting good production from DeMarcus Cousins (3-of-11, six points) or Marcus Thornton (2-of-9, four points) while the Jazz have been efficient.

The Kings are shooting 42 percent while the Jazz continue to shoot well (52 percent) and are in control of the game.

Utah led by as many as 12 points in the second quarter as the Jazz reserves provided a spark.

Second-year forward Derrick Favors had eight points and six rebounds off the bench for Utah . Al Jefferson leads the Jazz with 16 points.

Tyreke Evans has 12 points off the bench to lead the Kings. Jason Thompson has 11 points and six rebounds.

FIRST QUARTER
Jazz 30, Kings 26

The Kings aren't shooting the ball well and haven't figured out how to slow down Utah center Al Jefferson.

Jefferson is 6-of-7 for 12 points while the Kings are shooting just 41.4 percent.

It's been an especially tough start for DeMarcus Cousins, who has missed of his eight of his 10 shots and already has two fouls.

As a team the Kings are 12-of-29.

Jason Thompson leads the Kings with 11 points and six rebounds.

The Jazz are shooting 58.3 percent.

Terrence Williams, who was signed to a 10-day contract Wednesday did not dress for the game. Tyreke Evans came off the bench again and allowed John Salmons to stay in the starting lineup.

Kings coach Keith Smart said it would be up to Evans to decide when he wanted to start again.



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