Kings rally in Oakland to hand W's 104-103 loss

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Kings rally in Oakland to hand W's 104-103 loss

April 10, 2011BOXSCORE KINGS VIDEONBAPAGE NBASCOREBOARD

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Monta Ellis swooped and soared to the rim for a layup attempt, colliding with DeMarcus Cousins and falling flat on his head.Turned out to be a Kings knockout.Marcus Thornton scored 21 points and made several big shots late, and the Sacramento Kings rallied for a 104-103 victory over the Golden State Warriors on Sunday night after Ellis' scary fall."It's highly unusual," Kings coach Paul Westphal said of the game. "Somehow we found a way."Thornton's jumper with 12.6 seconds remaining put the Kings ahead by four and sealed the victory, snapping Sacramento's two-game losing streak despite committing 21 turnovers as a team. The teams split the season series 2-2.Of far bigger concern for the Warriors was their star guard.
NEWS: W's Ellis to be further evaluated after scary fall
Ellis momentarily laid motionless following the foul by Cousins - who also gave David Lee a bloody lip earlier in the game on an elbow - and was so woozy when he stood up that teammates had to help him balance. Ellis was helped to the locker room and sent to the hospital for further examination."You could just see in the look in his eyes that he no idea where he was," said Lee, who had 24 points and 14 rebounds. "It's a scary moment, I've been there before, where guys assume you're fine because you're getting up but you have no idea where you're at. He kinda was going to the line because he had to shoot free throws, but he was going toward the fans."I was like, 'No, come on trainer, get out here. Get him.'"The Warriors had little chance without him.Lou Amundson was chosen by the Kings to shoot the free throws in place of Ellis, making one of two to trim Sacramento's lead to two. Then Thornton made two free throws and later a 22-foot jumper with 12.6 seconds left for the win."We've got two more tough games and those games are building blocks for us to see where we are," Thornton said. "I credit the guys for still playing hard."Ellis will not travel with the team for Monday's game at Denver, marking the first contest he will miss all season. He did not speak to reporters afterward but told teammates he was feeling better.Cousins added 15 points and 13 rebounds, and Tyreke Evans and Jason Thompson each scored 14 points for the Kings, who overcame an eight-point deficit late in the fourth quarter.Stephen Curry had 27 points and eight assists and Dorell Wright added 19 points for the Warriors, who had won three straight. Ellis, who was already slowed by a strained right ankle, finished with seven points and four assists in 26 minutes."Without question. Monta playing how he's been playing, we probably have a great chance to pull this one out if he was in there," Warriors coach Keith Smart said.The Kings were sloppy for most of the game but delivered when it counted.They erased the eight-point deficit in the fourth with an 11-0 run to take a 92-89 lead. Then Curry and seldom-used reserve Jeremy Lin answered with consecutive jumpers to put Golden State back in front.Evans followed with a 3-pointer before Thornton's driving layup gave Sacramento a 97-93 lead with a little more than 3 minutes remaining. Golden State came back within one, and then Cousins was called for a shot-clock violation.The Warriors spoiled a chance to take the lead on the next possession, with Beno Udrih intercepting an errant pass from Curry. Thortnon followed with a jumper to put the Kings ahead by three, and then the Kings delivered the knockout blow - even if it wasn't intentional - on Ellis.NOTES: Curry, who helped the U.S. to a gold medal in the FIBA world championships last summer, received his ring in a pre-game ceremony. ... Kings PG Evans hit the floor hard on a layup attempt in the second quarter. He was shaken up and limped off the floor after a minute, but he stayed in the game and showed no signs of being slowed. ... Warriors C Andris Biedrins missed his 12th straight game with a sprained left ankle and is not expected back for the final two games this season.

Taking a closer look at Ryan's criticism of Shanahan

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Taking a closer look at Ryan's criticism of Shanahan

There is no shortage of blame to go around for the Atlanta Falcons’ collapse in Super Bowl 51.

The Falcons built a 28-3 lead in the middle of the third quarter and let it slip away, ultimately falling to the New England Patriots, 34-28, in overtime.

Matt Ryan voiced one previously undisclosed factor in the collapse this week in an interview with Pete Prisco of CBS Sports, pointing the finger at the new coach of the 49ers.

Kyle Shanahan has been the focus of a lot of the blame, but critique from the league MVP was a new one.

The Falcons quarterback faulted his former offensive coordinator for taking too much time to relay the play calls. Ryan said he did not have enough time to change any of the plays – presumably checking out of called pass plays to run the ball.

Here’s what Ryan told Prisco:

"Kyle's play calls -- he would take time to get stuff in. As I was getting it, you're looking at the clock and you're talking 16 seconds before it cuts out. You don't have a lot of time to say, 'There's 16 seconds, no, no, no, we're not going to do that. Hey, guys, we're going to line up and run this.' You're talking about breaking the huddle at seven seconds if you do something along the lines.

"With the way Kyle's system was set up, he took more time to call plays and we shift and motion a lot more than we did with (former coordinator) Dirk (Koetter). You couldn't get out of stuff like that. We talk about being the most aggressive team in football. And I'm all for it. But there's also winning time. You're not being aggressive not running it there."

The 49ers can point to mismanagement of the clock for their own Super Bowl heartbreak. The 49ers’ offense had the perfect play call at the perfect time against the Baltimore Ravens late in Super Bowl XLVII.

But with the play clock striking :00, coach Jim Harbaugh was forced to call a timeout from the sideline. A split-second later, the ball was snapped and it appeared the quarterback run would have easily ended up with Colin Kaepernick in the end zone.

Much like after the 49ers’ loss, the Falcons left plenty of room for second-guessing.

Two of Shanahan’s plays calls, which directly led to the collapse, will forever be scrutinized.

The first came with 8:31 remaining in regulation and the Falcons holding a 28-12 lead. On third and 1 from the Atlanta 36, Shanahan did not remain conservative with an expected run play. He swung for the fence.

Receiver Aldrick Robinson, whom the 49ers added this offseason as a free-agent pickup, was breaking free past the Patriots secondary for what could have been a touchdown. But just as Ryan was unloading, New England linebacker Dont’a Hightower hit him and forced the fumble. Running back Devonta Freeman whiffed on blitz pickup, which would have provided Ryan with enough time to target Robinson deep.

Ryan’s explanation does not appear applicable on this play, though. In watching the replay, the Falcons broke the huddle with more than 25 seconds remaining on the play clock and the snap occurred with :15 to spare.

The other questionable sequence came after the Falcons – leading by eight points -- got to the New England 22-yard line with less than five minutes to play. The Falcons lost 1 yard on a run play on first down.

On second down, Ryan was sacked for a 12-yard loss. Before that play, the Falcons broke the huddle with :19 on the play clock. The snap occurred with :04 remaining. The game clock was running, so the Falcons had reason to attempt to burn as much clock as possible.

In the fourth quarter, the Falcons never seemed rushed to get off a play. The closest they came to delay-of-game penalties were when they snapped the ball with :04 on the one play and :03 another time. The majority of their snaps occurred with :10 or more seconds to spare.

If the Falcons were guilty of anything when it came to the play clock, it was that the offense did not waste more time. After New England pulled to within 28-9 late in the third quarter, the Falcons ran only six offensive plays while the game clock was running.

On those six plays, the Falcons snapped the ball with :13, :09, :14, :20, :13 and :04 remaining on the play clock. If they’d snapped the ball with one second remaining each time, they could have shortened the game by 1 minute, 7 seconds. The Patriots scored the game-tying touchdown with :57 remaining in regulation.

Headed for 100 losses, Giants quietly give up on "Don't Stop Believin'" tradition

Headed for 100 losses, Giants quietly give up on "Don't Stop Believin'" tradition

SAN FRANCISCO — At some point over the last month, the Giants quietly stopped playing “Don’t Stop Believin’” in the late innings of games they trail. 

It’s unclear exactly when it started, or who made the decision. A number of team employees, surveyed over the past week, had noticed. But nobody knew the exact details. Perhaps the longtime staple of AT&T Park was shelved on July 9, when FanGraphs dropped the playoff odds to 0.00 percent for the first time in a lost season. Maybe it was during a bad loss before that or a bad loss after that. You can take your pick. This season has been filled with so many of them it’s hard to keep track. 

Friday’s stood out, in part because this was the kind of night where Journey briefly made sense. The Giants gave Jeff Samardzija a 4-0 lead in the first inning against a Padres team that spent the early innings kicking and throwing the ball all over the field and making mistakes on the bases. It was 5-1 after three innings. By the sixth, the Padres had tied it. By the seventh, they had the lead. By the eighth, it was a three-run lead. 

Before the bottom of the eighth, the in-stadium crew played Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy” for a crowd of a few thousand. Last weekend, Huey Lewis was the fill-in for Journey. On Wednesday, a game the Giants actually came back to win, the scoreboard played a singalong game to “Happy Together” by The Turtles. 

On this night, the Giants actually would come back. Conor Gillaspie hit a two-run homer with two outs in the ninth, tying the game and sending it into extras. The Giants had trailed by three with one out remaining, but the momentum provided by Buster Posey, Brandon Crawford and Gillaspie was just a blip. The Padres scored three in the 11th off George Kontos, who has pitched five times over the last eight days and was supposed to get a night to rest. 

Kontos was the last to give up runs in a 12-9 loss, but hardly the only one. Samardzija took blame after failing to get through five with a big early cushion. That put pressure on the tired bullpen, and the relievers blew it over and over again. The Padres scored runs in six consecutive innings at one point and had 20 hits. 

“We couldn’t stop them,” Bruce Bochy said, shaking his head. 

Nothing can apparently stop this skid. The Giants are 37-61 and six games behind the Padres. They are much closer to the No. 1 draft pick than they are to fourth place in their division. 

“Don’t Stop Believin’” survived the 2013 season. It survived 2015 and the second half of last year. Nothing can survive this season.