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Tag:Sacramento Kings
Posted on: March 10, 2011 1:37 am
Edited on: March 10, 2011 1:48 am

Game Changer: Game-winners galore

Sacramento Kings big man DeMarcus Cousins got tons of late touches, Utah Jazz big man Al Jefferson got a tip in at the buzzer, Kevin Durant stars in an amazing picture and Blake Griffin throws down a lefty finish. All that, plus plenty more. Posted by Ben Golliver.

Each game is made up of elements that help formulate the outcome. Monday through Friday, we'll bring you the elements from the previous night's games in our own specialized version of the game recaps. It's not everything that happened, but it's an insight into what led to the results you'll see in the box scores. This is the Game Changer.  


If you're not rooting for the Sacramento Kings on behalf of their awesome fanbase given the possibility that the team relocates to Anaheim, there's something wrong with you. But Tuesday night's 106-102 loss to the Orlando Magic was painful enough to keep even a bandwagon-jumping sympathetic observer up at night, befuddled at how it went down. 

The Kings jumped out of the gate thanks to a double dose of Marcus Thornton and DeMarcus Cousins, who combined for 19 first quarter points. Playing with life and energy, the Kings held on to a slight edge throughout most of the game, looking stoic enough to hang on despite the Magic finally getting serious midway through the fourth quarter.  Even as Orlando point guard Jameer Nelson was in the midst of scoring eight straight Magic points, the Kings had an answer, as Cousins swished a beautiful turnaround jumper to give Sacramento a 97-93 lead with 4:03 to play.

Unfortunately, That jumper might have been the worst thing that happened to the Kings. Playing without lead guard Tyreke Evans, the Kings simply turned over the entirety of their offense to Cousins for most of the rest of the game. Given that he finished with 29 points, seven rebounds and two assists in 36 minutes and was being guarded by Dwight Howard, who was playing with five fouls, it wasn't a horrible idea. But as the possessions added up, it did start to feel forced, especially as he was often isolated well outside the paint. 

On the first possession following his made jumper, Cousins missed a jumper and committed a turnover and then, with one possession off in the middle for a Thornton three-pointer, Cousins missed another jumper. Unswayed, and now trailing thanks to some more Nelson heroics, the Kings went back to Cousins again. He succeeded in drawing Howard's sxith foul on a drive to the hoop. Howard argued the call, but replays showed he had a hold of Cousins' jersey and didn't do an adequate enough job of moving his feet. Cousins missed the front end of the free throws, much to his own dismay, as the familiar head shake and "negative body language" was definitely in the building. Magic forward Hedo Turkoglu responded by hitting a three-pointer -- which he followed up with a wave goodbye -- to make the score 105-100, and that was essentially the ball game. 

The three or four minute stretch of play encapsulated Cousins' season: tantalizing yet, ultimately, frustrating. His combination of a pure shooting stroke, handle, ability to snare offensive rebounds and his uncanny ability to draw fouls around the hoop made this game must-see TV, even as the Kings were busy blowing a late lead throughout all of it. 

It's no big secret that Cousins needs to mature. This was the type of night that makes it possible for diehard Kings fans, and their sympathizers, to come away thinking: "Take your time growing up, big fella. We'll be here waiting for you."


Earlier Wednesday night, we brought you video of New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony's game-winning jumper against the Memphis Grizzlies. Anthony's shot wasn't the only game-winner of the evening. 

Utah Jazz big man Al Jefferson had one of the most improbable game-winners you'll see, topping the Raptors in Toronto. With the game tied at 94 with less than two seconds left, Jazz point guard Devin Harris drove into the lane to throw up a flip shot. The shot missed off the backboard and caromed into a four-man scrum in the middle of the paint. 

Both Sonny Weems and Reggie Evans, one of the league's best rebounders, were in between Jefferson and the basket, however Jefferson was able to extend above both of them and teammate C.J. Miles to get his right hand to the ball. He propelled the ball upwards, well above the rim level, and it looped down slowly, directly through the basket. Jefferson's bucket provided the Jazz with the winning margin as time expired, 96-94. 

Here's video of the play, courtesy of YouTube user ESPN.


Kevin Durant: 34 points, 16 rebounds, two assists, one block on 13 of 26 shooting in 43 minutes in an Oklahoma City Thunder road win over the Philadelphia 76ers.

Tyler Hansbrough:  21 points, 10 rebounds, three steals on 6 of 12 shooting in 36 minutes in an Indiana Pacers road loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Kevin Love:  16 points, 21 rebounds, one steal in 27 minutes in a Minnesota Timberwolves home win over the Indiana Pacers.

Carmelo Anthony:  31 points, five rebounds, six assists, one steal on 12 of 24 shooting in a New York Knicks road win over the Memphis Grizzlies.

DeMarcus Cousins:  29 points, seven rebounds, two assists, three steals on 8 of 16 shooting in a Sacramento Kings home loss to the Orlando Magic.



This is far from Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin's finest work, but he threw down a nifty, lefty dunk against the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night. Griffin slips the pick, levitates, clutches and finishes over Nenad Krstic. Pretty sweet. Video courtesy of YouTube user QuakeGriffin.



I'm not sure if this picture of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant requires 3D goggles to view properly but it's pretty awesome.


The Utah Jazz called up D-Leaguer Marcus Cousin on Tuesday and he made his NBA debut on Wednesday against the Toronto Raptors. Only one problem: The Jazz didn't have a jersey with his last name on it, just the number zero. comes through with the you-have-to-see-it picture and an explanation of what happened. 
Posted on: March 6, 2011 8:13 pm
Edited on: March 6, 2011 8:53 pm

Lakers, Clippers oppose Kings' Anaheim move?

Are the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers opposed to the Sacramento Kings relocating to Anaheim? Posted by Ben Golliver. maloofs

A few weeks back, we noted that the Sacramento Kings had received an extension that provided them with more time - until April 18 - to consider a possible move to Anaheim. While Anaheim is still the baby stepbrother of Los Angeles, it has proven to be a solid market for professional sports, offers the allure of a large regional television audience and houses the Honda Center, a building that is slightly less old than Sacramento's Arco Arena. 

While the move would be heartbreaking and soul-crushing for one of the league's most passionate fanbases, it makes some sense for the team's cash-strapped ownership group. One potential problem with becoming the new kids on the block in Southern California? The current residents may not be welcoming a third NBA team with open arms.

The New York Daily News reports that both the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Clippers - who play their home games in downtown L.A.'s Staples Center - are "opposed" to the Kings' relocation plans.
The move to Anaheim will be opposed by the Lakers and Clippers, who see it as an encroachment on their territory. But sources close to the Maloofs say they're willing to pay the two L.A. teams whatever it takes to relocate. That would be in addition to the league's relocation fee of $30 million.

Anaheim Honda Center and Ducks owner Henry Samueli is prepared to help the Maloofs with the financing, offering a $100 million loan. Samueli tried to buy the team last year.

"The likelihood of them leaving is probably greater than them staying," said Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson, the former Suns star, this past week. "But it's not a done deal."
Given the introduction of new competition, you can't blame the Lakers and Clippers for seeking compensation. The question for today is whether the Lakers and Clippers can provide enough financial pressure to make the Kings think twice about the timing of their move. It's difficult to speculate how effective any efforts to dissuade the Kings relocation efforts would be, at least without knowing the full details of the Maloof brothers' financial situation, which is said to be in tough shape due to Las Vegas casino losses.

Longer term, though, it's unlikely that the Lakers and Clippers can make a relocation effort prohibitively expensive for the Kings. If it comes down to dollars and cents, the Kings, like other franchises before them, will find their way to a larger market and better building, one way or another.

With that said, the city of Sacramento and Kings fans have responded in the best way possible: appealing to history and loyalty, as the cash is almost certainly greener on the other side. Whether emotional appeals carry any weight in 2011, though, is anybody's guess.
Posted on: March 3, 2011 7:32 pm
Edited on: March 3, 2011 7:37 pm

Johnson on Kings: Likely they'll be in Anaheim

Posted by Royce Young

Not good news for the Kings future in Sacramento. Despite efforts by fans and a good grassroots movements to try and do what's necessary to keep the Kings from relocating, one of the franchises biggest proponents of keeping them in Sacramento sounded defeated at a press conference Thursday.

Former NBA player Kevin Johnson and current mayor of Sacramento said of the Kings' future, "[It's] more likely they're going to be in Anaheim."

Not good news for Sacramento.

Johnson reportedly met with the Maloofs Wednesday, but the co-owners aren't keeping Johnson in the loop much. So with Johnson getting that sense despite being held out of a lot of information means that Johnson almost seems to be throwing in the towel.

The Kings organization this week was granted an extension by the NBA to request permission to be relocated before next season, a strong indication that a move from Sacramento is under serious consideration. The Kings have been trying for years to get a new arena in Sacramento, stressing that a more modern facility is necessary for the team to maintain a viable business.

The Kings have been in Sacramento for 26 years, but the failure to secure financing for a new, modern arena to replace the aged Arco Arena (now Power Balance Pavilion, but come on) has pushed the Maloofs toward relocation.

The Kings have struggled in Sacramento making money as the team has also struggled to win on the court, but the main issue actually comes down to the Maloof brothers' actual finances as they've lost some money over the past few years due to the slowed economy.

“[The Maloofs are] going down a route to look at their options and we have to respect that," Johnson said. "I don’t think at this particular moment there is a whole lot we can do."

Basically at the press conference though, Johnson said that Anaheim would need to fall on its face for the Kings to not relocate there. While Anaheim does have an arena waiting, it's not brand new. And on top of that, there really hasn't been a large swell of support by the people of Anaheim to bring the team there either.

Johnson said the doesn't think Sacramento can "influence" the Maloof brothers' decision to move and even added that the situation is "ominous and concerning." Again, not good signs for the future of the Kings in Sacramento.

But here's the thing: If you don't build it, they aren't staying. That was the lesson with the Sonics in Seattle and it's another tough love lesson for the Kings in Sacramento. It might not be fair, but these owners don't keep franchises for fun anymore. It's not OK for them to lose money like it used to be. It's no longer just a hobby. They don't want to see a franchise constantly in the red so they're going to do what it takes to make money, even if it means moving.

Rough for Sacramento, but reality.
Category: NBA
Posted on: February 24, 2011 5:45 pm

Trade Tracker: Boston sends Daniels to Sactown

Boston trades Marquis Daniels to Sacramento for cash.
Posted by Matt Moore

An updating list of trades at the NBA Trade Deadline. Posted by EOB staff.  


Boston receives: Cash, money, moulah, dinero

Sacramento receives: Marquis Daniels, ability to avoid penalty for being under minimum salary

Analysis:  The Kings were below the minimum salary. They literally were not paying their players enough, and had to have another guy to avoid a penalty. As a result, they trade for Daniels, who suffered a bruised spine and will not play again this season. They paid off the Celtics to help them avoid being below the minimum.  Daniels had played well for the Celtics. He had worked for them, helped them to the top seed in the East. He was injured in a freak accident. And now the Celitcs have just ditched him so they can go pursue another player. I get it's a business. I get these things happen. But it just feels wrong to punish Daniels like this, even if he would only be able to support the team from the bench. It's how it is, how this league works, but for a team that talks about family so much, those words ring hollow today. 
Posted on: February 24, 2011 10:04 am

Kings receive extension to consider Anaheim

Sacramento Kings ask for, receive extension to consider Anaheim relocation. 
Posted by Matt Moore

The Kings have been considering relocation to Anaheim for months. They've been in discussions regarding a loan for over $100 million in the event of such a relocation to the Honda Center in Anaheim. David Stern recently acknowledged discussions between the two parties. With the deadline for relocation for next season, March 1st, rapidly approaching, the Kings are going to need a little more time.

Mark Kreidler of KHTK reports that the Kings have asked for, and been granted an extension past the deadline to consider the Anaheim relocation option. Kreidler also reports that the Maloofs have said they will not sell the team, nor will they accept the loan from Samueli. Perhaps most interestingly, Kreidler reports that the league also wants time to consider such a relocation. They are "not sold' on Orange County. 

The NBA not interested in shoving a small-market team into the greater Los Angeles area? Be still my beating small-market heart. That said, this move does nothing to stop the relocation, it simply slows it and opens the door for the Maloofs or the league to shut down the movement. Ownership is also looking to see if city officials in Sacramento blink at the talk and get moving on the new arena that nearly everyone (except possibly, voters hit hard by the economy) agrees needs to happen, or at least must happen for the Kings to stay in Sacramento. 

The best news here is that the ax on Sacramento, which has proven to be a great NBA city, has been stayed for at least another day. 
Posted on: February 21, 2011 11:28 am

Sacramento plans arena regardless of Kings' plan

Sacramento leadership reaffirms commitment to building new arena regardless of whether the Kings relocate or not.
Posted by Matt Moore

Saturday night David Stern acknowledged that Kings' ownership had met with Anaheim officials regarding a possible relocation, as reports surfaced that the Maloofs were considering filing for relocation before the March 1st deadline.  On Sunday, a Sacramento city council member responded in the best way possible, by simply saying the council was intent on finding funding to build a new arena regardless of whether the Kings move or not. From News 10 KXTV in Sacramento:

City Councilwoman Angelique Ashby Sunday said Sacramento will continue working on plans to build a new sports arena, even if the Sacramento Kings leave the city. She said a new arena "serves this community on multiple levels" beyond being a place to play basketball.

Ashby said a new arena is a good idea even if it's star tenant has left town. "I hope they stay but if the Kings chose to leave, we will miss them and wish them well," she said. "We will welcome other opportunities to enrich this region."
via Sacramento city councilmember promises to continue push for arena | | Sacramento, California | Local News.

Pretty smart move. It maintains the city's backbone and leverage while giving the Maloofs something to consider.  The onl problem is that Ms. Ashby isn't the problem. The public is the problem. The economy is the problem. The spiraling economy for NBA small-market teams, especially those who struggle with being competitive during a rebuilding project, that is the problem. And Anaheim is a sure thing. It has a building, ownership support, and the sacred L.A. regional market cow from which to suckle, as Donald Sterling has for years in good years and bad. Okay, more like good year, and bad, but you get what I mean. 

The next eight days are going to be very interesting in Sacramento.
Posted on: February 20, 2011 3:14 am

Stern acknowledges Kings have discussed Anaheim

David Stern acknowledges talks between Anaheim and Kings
Posted by Matt Moore

In his comments to the press Saturday night before the All-Star activities, commisioner David Stern acknowledged that the Kings are in discussions with Anaheim officials to relocate the team. The comments from Stern confirmed an earlier report from KFBK in Sacramento that Anaheim Ducks owner Henry Samueli had offered a $100 million loan for the Maloof in exchange for the Kings' relocation. At the time, the interest was thought to be primarily from Samueli.

But ESPN later reported Saturday night that the Maloofs are "seriously considering" applying for relocation on March 1st. That, in essence, would be the ballgame. 

The city of Sacramento has failed in about ten different ways to approve funding for a new arena to replace Arco Arena, which is considered more of a tomb than an arena at this point. It's a struggling economy in a small market, and mayor Kevin Johnson is at his wits' end trying to come up with a solution to keep the Kings in Sactown. If the Maloofs decide to file for relocation in eight days, it's over. No more initiatives, no more discussions. The NBA owners will approve, the Kings will take the money and run.

This is a huge moment for the league in terms of its future in market relations. Big name players are abandoning their teams for brighter lights and bigger payrolls.  Small market teams are bleeding money.  Revenue sharing is the key debate in the union-owners talks. And Sacramento, home to one fo the most passionate fanbases in the NBA, may lose its team. If something isn't done, soon, the league's not going to have any small markets left. 

Posted on: February 16, 2011 12:30 am
Edited on: February 16, 2011 12:39 am

Cousins is already putting incident behind him

Posted by Royce Young

OKLAHOMA CITY -- As the Thunder and Kings got set to tip, the popular arena anthem "Zombie Nation" blared throughout Oklahoma City Arena. Donte Greene went wild on the Sacramento bench, busting out some sort of Russian high step dance.

Sitting right in front, totally hamming it up as Greene grooved? DeMarcus Cousins, who of course had an altercation with Greene in the locker room following a close 99-97 loss to the Thunder just a few days ago.

Cousins was deemed "inactive" for the Kings last game, a win at Phoenix, and was fined one game's pay for the incident. With eyes locked on him and how he'd react to his first action since the locker room dust-up, Cousins, and the rest of the team, appeared to have everything behind them.

"To be honest, it wasn't as big as people made it out to be," Cousins said. "I mean, teams do that. I mean, when it's a team sport, you're going to have disagreements because it's five opinions trying to get along. But they made it bigger than it is. It's really not an issue. There's no beef, there's none of that. We're fine."

Cousins apologized and took responsibility for what happened last Saturday saying in a statement, "I wish to apologize to my teammates, the Kings' organization and Kings fans for my role in an unfortunate altercation between teammates. I accept full responsibility for my actions and know that I must keep raising my standard of professionalism to be my best and a great player in the NBA."

Obviously those are just words and for Cousins to really move past this, it was going to start in Oklahoma City.

His team got completely rolled by the Thunder 126-96, falling by 17-4 within minutes. Cousins, who is typically a starter, began the game on the bench but checked in quickly with 7:22 left in the first quarter. The Kings never caught up, getting only as close as 15 to the Thunder, but Cousins turned in a nice performance regardless. The rookie finished with 21 points and 13 rebounds in 29 minutes.

"I came in and didn't get a chance to shots up over that little break, but really tried to get my shot going in the warm-ups, but it wasn't falling tonight. Overall though I kind of got in my groove," Cousins said. "To be honest, I really just wanted to win. I really wasn't concerned about my performance. I wanted to really come out and get a win. That's what we're here to do."

With Cousins, he's no headcase. He's a young player that might have some maturity issues. He's learned not just how to play professional basketball, but how to be a professional. It's something that not every rookie picks up on right away.

I think there will be an assumption that maybe this is a turning point for Cousins. He entered the league with a potential problem stamp and after being kicked out of a few practices by coach Paul Westphal combined with the Greene incident, he's had a rocky rookie campaign. However, with the not-a-suspension inactive punishment and then Tuesday's response, maybe it's a step forward.

"Hopefully," he said. "I believe I was taking steps forward before the incident happened. But, you could say I took steps back. And that can happen. But I'm just going to continue to progress."
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