Cousins, Kings put hurt on Pacers 110-93

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Cousins, Kings put hurt on Pacers 110-93

March 25, 2011BOXSCORE KINGS VIDEONBAPAGE NBASCOREBOARD
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) The Indiana Pacers are young and talented. With a chance to strengthen their grip on the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, they showed they haven't risen to their full potential yet.DeMarcus Cousins had 18 points and 14 rebounds to help the Sacramento Kings beat the Pacers 110-93 on Friday night.Indiana entered the game with a three-game lead over Milwaukee and Charlotte for eighth place in the East, but they shot 35 percent from the field and made just 4 of 25 3-point attempts. The Bucks and Bobcats each won on Friday night to trim the gap to two games."We can't relax," said Danny Granger, who led the Pacers with 20 points. "Every night you're playing against a team that can beat you. This should be a lesson for us."The Pacers were coming off road wins against New Jersey and Charlotte and had won five of seven. They felt good about their chances against Sacramento, which had the fourth-worst record in the league."You can't lose to a team that you should beat and at home, at this point in the season," Granger said. "It's a bad loss for us."Samuel Dalembert had 16 points and 10 rebounds, Francisco Garcia scored 16 points and Marcus Thornton added 15 points and nine rebounds for the Kings, who have won four of their last seven."We're really playing some good defense," Sacramento coach Paul Westphal said. "We've been knocking on the door all year playing close games, not quite being able to break through, and now we're starting to break through. We've got a good young team and we're learning some lessons, and we're learning to win on the road."Sacramento guard Tyreke Evans returned after missing 19 games with left foot plantar fasciitis and finished with six points and eight assists in 17 minutes."I looked at the court like it was my first time in the NBA," Evans said. "I haven't been out there in a long time. It was like 'Space Jam.' I need my powers back."Westphal said Evans played well."It's great to have Tyreke back," Westphal said. "I think he gave us some outstanding minutes."The game was competitive before Sacramento took control in the second quarter. A three-point play by Garcia gave the Kings a 47-30 lead.The Kings outrebounded the Pacers 38-23 in the first half and held Indiana to 25 percent shooting to take 55-37 lead at halftime."We had the slow start, but we were getting what we wanted offensively as far as good looks, we just couldn't really get them to go down," Granger said.The Kings led 65-46 in the third quarter when Garcia was called for a technical foul for arguing with an official. Granger, who had been held in check by Garcia up to that point, immediately became a factor. He hit a 3-pointer to ignite a 16-6 surge that cut Sacramento's lead to 71-62 and forced the Kings to call a timeout.The Kings regrouped and led 85-68 at the end of the quarter.Indiana made a final surge. Paul George's dunk cut Sacramento's lead to 99-86 with 3:47 to play. Westphal wanted to send Evans back into the game, but he couldn't."It was real hard not to put him back into the game when they were pressing us and we were running out of ball-handlers, but doctor's orders are doctor's orders," Westphal said.Back-to-back turnovers by the Pacers led to baskets by the Kings and ended the threat."We just didn't execute well," Pacers coach Frank Vogel said. "We didn't have poise on the offensive end and a lot of those poor offensive possessions - blocked shots and turnovers - led to run-outs for them. So a lot of their buckets were a result of poor offensive execution."Notes: The teams shot a combined 14 for 51 in the first quarter. ... Evans entered the game with 4:40 left in the first quarter. ... Butler's mascot, an English Bulldog named Butler Blue II, made an appearance during a break in the second quarter. Butler beat Wisconsin in the Round of 16 on Thursday in the NCAA tournament. ... Pacers G Darren Collison had made 27 straight free throws before missing one in the third quarter.

Falcons C Mack explains what makes Shanahan's offense so effective

Falcons C Mack explains what makes Shanahan's offense so effective

The Atlanta Falcons had the highest scoring offense during the 2016 regular season, averaging 33.8 points per game, and they racked up 6,653 total yards.

In two playoff games, they've scored a combined 80 points.

The architect of that high-powered offense is Kyle Shanahan, who is the presumptive head coach of the 49ers.

So what makes Shanahan's scheme so effective?

Falcons starting center and former Cal Bears star Alex Mack answered that on ESPN's Mike and Mike show on Tuesday.

"He does a really good job of just having a very balanced offense. We want to run outside schemes. we want to run outside zone, we want to be really effective at doing that. And when a team stops you from doing that, when they put people over there, or they slant out or whatever they do to stop that, he has the backup plan," Mack said.

"He knows exactly when they bring that safety down to make it really tough to run outside zone, well that's going to open up some throws later down the field. And then when they put someone out there on the throws, well, there's a bigger cutback lane, so he calls a different run for that. So our offense is really built around being balanced and having an answer for what the defense wants to do to stop us," Mack continued.

Mack, Shanahan and the Falcons are set to put their No. 1 scoring offense to the test against the Patriots' No. 1 scoring defense in Super Bowl 51 in Houston on Feb. 5, 2017.

 

LeBron goes off after latest loss: Cavs 'not better than last year'

LeBron goes off after latest loss: Cavs 'not better than last year'

CLEVELAND -- LeBron James has alluded to flaws with Cleveland's roster all season.

He got much more detailed about the cracks and crevices in the NBA champions after their fifth loss in seven games.

James urged the team's front office to do more after a 124-122 loss Monday night to the New Orleans Pelicans, who were missing star forward Anthony Davis.

"We're not better than last year, from a personnel standpoint," he said. "We're a top-heavy team. ... I just hope we're not satisfied as an organization."

On Tuesday, James went on Twitter to explain that his comments weren't directed at Cavs general manager David Griffin or Cleveland's coaching staff.

"I not mad or upset at management cause Griff and staff have done a great job, I just feel we still need to improve in order to repeat..." James tweeted. "If that's what we wanna do."

After speaking to a larger group of reporters on Monday night, James saved his most biting comments for Cleveland's traveling beat writers.

The Cavs haven't played well for weeks, and James felt the need to unload.

"It's been a (lousy) 2017 so far," he said.

His biggest issue is with the current makeup of the Cavs, who have been hurt most by allowing backup point guard Matthew Dellavedova to leave as a free agent and injuries to forward Chris Andersen and guard J.R. Smith. James watched the Golden State Warriors retool after losing in last year's NBA Finals and feels the Cavs haven't done enough to address their biggest needs.

James said he's expressed his opinions directly to Griffin, who recently obtained Kyle Korver in a trade with Atlanta.

"We need a (expletive) playmaker. I'm not saying you can just go find one, like you can go outside and see trees. I didn't say that," James said.

Griffin has an open roster spot and two small trade exceptions. The trading deadline is Feb. 23 and free agents can be signed until March 1 to be eligible for the playoffs.

Now in his 14th season, James knows his time to win more titles is dwindling.

"I don't know what we got to offer," James said of possible deals. "I just know me, personally. I don't got no time to waste. I'll be 33 in the winter, and I ain't got time to waste."

It remains to be seen whether James' public rant will spark the team. But James also knows that the Cavs will do anything within reason to accommodate him. What King James wants, he usually gets.

Despite their recent slide, the Cavs still have the best record in the Eastern Conference.

Cleveland hosts Sacramento on Wednesday as well as Brooklyn and Oklahoma City later this week.