Sacramento, CA – The good thing is it’s still early in the season to turn things around. So, no need too panic, worry or over analyze the situation. The best way to describe tonight’s game is “one team was ready and the other was not!”
The Sacramento Kings committed 21 turnovers as they lost to the Memphis Grizzlies 100-91. Earning their second loss at home the Kings had no answer to stop Rudy Gay who had a game-high 32 points.
The Grizzlies have lost three straight games with two double overtimes but came in here tonight looking as if they had three days off. Memphis forced 20 turnovers using defensive traps to demolish Sacramento’s zone and man-to-man defense.
“I tell the guys, play the game until the end,” said coach Lionel Hollins.” “A different team on a different night can always be a problem.” “We have to go game by game but a win is our priority tonight.”
Zach Randolph returned to the lineup and recorded a double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds. His presence in the paint was dominant and made life hell for the Kings. They took over in the third going with a 16-4 run and never looked back.
“After last night this game became a must win,” Gay said. “Z-Bo (Zach) is an animal down there getting rebounds and he makes it so we don’t have to work as hard.” “He’s apart of this team and we’re not used to playing without him.”
Rookie of the Year, Tyreke Evans led Sacramento with 30 points, eight rebounds, five assists and four steals. His efforts were unfazed by the Grizzlies soaring offense due to costly mistakes. The Kings got off to a bad start when they gave up seven turnovers in the first quarter.
“We wanted to come out here and get a win,” Evans said. “We need to start from beginning to end with defense so we can maintain a lead early.”
Sam Dalembert also returned to the lineup with 12 rebounds and eight points for the first time this season. Francisco Garcia sparked a rally in the third but the hole was too deep to climb out being down by 16. Garcia’s 21 points wasn’t enough to slow down Gay who has scored 30 plus points in the last three games.
With only six games into the season, the Kings are (3-3) and have more than enough time to over come the past two loses at home. One game doesn’t determine the out come of an entire season so they go back to work with the focus on defense.
“We know what we need to work on,” coach Paul Westphal said. “The turnovers were the main difference in the game and it just didn’t come together tonight.” “We’re not discouraged by our performance, we still have time to make things right for the season.”
Written by: Malaika Bobino