Kings

Instant Replay: Labissiere's career-high 32 leads Kings past Suns

Instant Replay: Labissiere's career-high 32 leads Kings past Suns

BOX SCORE

Sacramento Kings head coach Dave Joerger turned the ball over to his young core Wednesday in Phoenix and they delivered in shocking fashion. Led by rookie Skal Labissiere’s career night, the Kings outlasted the Suns to come away with the 107-101 win.

Labissiere showed off his entire arsenal against Phoenix. The 6-foot-11 power forward scored a career-high 32 points on 11-for-15 shooting, including 20 in the fourth quarter and added 11 rebounds in 30 minutes of action.

The starting frontline of Willie Cauley-Stein and Kosta Koufos produced numbers for coach Dave Joerger. Cauley-Stein stuffed the stat sheet, finishing the night with 14 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, four steals and four blocks, while Koufos chipped in 13 points and six rebounds.

Starting for Darren Collison, Ty Lawson attacked rookie Tyler Ulis, coming away with 11 points and six assists. Arron Afflalo scored 14 points and Langston Galloway provided a spark off the bench, knocking a pair of 3-pointers for eight points.

Devin Booker burned the Kings with a game-winner at the buzzer the last time these two teams met. He was back at it Wednesday night at Talking Stick Resort Arena, scoring 19 points on just 6-for-26 shooting.

Ulis has a future in the league. The pint-sized point started for Eric Bledsoe and scored 13 points and handed out a game-high 13 assists.

T.J. Warren dropped in 24 points on 12-for-16 shooting and grabbed eight rebounds and Alan Williams scored 14 points and picked up 10 rebounds.

Sacramento native, Marquese Chriss scored 17 points, grabbed seven rebounds and blocked five shots.  

STANDOUT PERFORMER:
Labissiere wasn’t just the best rookie on the court, he was the best player. The 20-year-old forward is showing there is more to his game everytime he steps on the court.

TURNING POINT:
The Suns stayed with the Kings all the way down the stretch, but in the end, Bookers shooting woes were too much to overcome, as was the strong play of Labissiere.

INJURY UPDATE:
Darren Collison and Anthony Tolliver missed the game due to “planned rest.” Rookie Malachi Richardson is out another week or two with a right hamstring thickness tear. Rudy Gay is out for the year with a torn left Achilles.

WHAT'S NEXT:
The Kings travel have two days off before playing Saturday in a 12 pm start on the road against the Oklahoma City Thunder.  Following the game in OKC, the Kings fly to San Antonio where they face the Spurs on Sunday evening.

 

DeMarcus Cousins: 'Take all them motherf****** down'

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AP

DeMarcus Cousins: 'Take all them motherf****** down'

Some professional athletes take a stand by kneeling on the sidelines or raising a fist into the air. Some write succinct tweets expressing their dismay with the current political climate in the United States of America. Others just get right to the point with a poignant off the cuff statement to a waiting camera.

Former Sacramento Kings big man DeMarcus Cousins has certainly mastered the art of the cryptic tweet, but he’s also never been one to shy away from a direct question when asked. When an inquiry was thrown his direction about confederate statues in New Orleans and his home state of Alabama, Cousins was brief with his words, but very clear.

"Take all them mother****ers down," Cousins told TMZ while navigating a security line at the airport. "Take 'em all down.”

Cousins may not have chosen the most eloquent words, but his point of view is shared by plenty of others. He isn’t the first athlete to take a stand with regards to race in America over the last week as racial tensions have spilled out into the streets in Charlottesville, Virginia. Social media is filled with professional athletes adding their thoughts to the conversation.

The Warriors’ Kevin Durant has made it clear that he will not visit the White House and President Donald Trump, a visit most teams make following an NBA championship.

"Nah, I won't do that," the 8-time All-Star told ESPN on Thursday. "I don't respect who's in office right now.”

"I don't agree with what he agrees with, so my voice is going to be heard by not doing that,” Durant continued. “That's just me personally, but if I know my guys well enough, they'll all agree with me."

Garrett Temple has used Twitter to make his thoughts known as well. Recently named the Kings’ Players Voice Teammate of the Year by the National Basketball Players Association, Temple has used his position as an NBA player to speak out multiple times.

Over the last week, he’s fielded questions and had plenty of discussions through social media on the issues of race and equality. His Twitter timeline is littered with thoughtful replies and some not so thoughtful ideas as well. Plenty of fans thanking him for using his position to further the conversation and of course, there is the occasional, “stick to sports” comment.

Agree or disagree, today’s athletes have huge platforms to share their opinions. From Cousins to Temple, there are varying degrees of engagement, but the time of players staying out of the discussion is long gone.

The Maloofs' colossal charity bet on Mayweather-McGregor circus act

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The Maloofs' colossal charity bet on Mayweather-McGregor circus act

Gavin and Joe Maloof have gambled plenty in their lives, which is in part how they ended up losing the Sacramento Kings. They ran big, they hit a dry well, and they ended up selling the works.

So their decision to bet $880,000 on Floyd Mayweather in his “thing” with Conor McGregor for a $160,000 payout seemed the perfectly daft idea for two guys who were painted as perfectly daft when they were running the Kings and their other businesses into a freeway abutment on I-80.

In fairness, they are planning to donate their winnings to a number of charities in the name of their hangover drink (Never Too Hungover, although I might have gone with the more lyrical HurlNoMore), so it’s not like their hearts aren’t a place close to the mythical “right place.”

But it does beg the question, “Why don’t they just give $160,000 and skip the scam?” Because it wasn’t about charity, it was about promotion, and while there’s nothing wrong with promotion, attaching it to one of the seediest carnival events of the modern era makes it seem, well, kind of creepy.

Or maybe “creepy” is too strong. Maybe’s it’s just opportunism, which is more, well, Vegas-y.

Kings fans will remember the Maloofs as the family that saved the foundering team from the clutches of owner Jim Thomas, and then remember them as the family whose clutches Vivek Ranadive had to save the team from 15 years later. It’s the nature of most ownerships – you do good to eliminate a prior evil, and eventually become evil yourselves when the fans turn on you.

But the Maloofs aren’t evil – even their most strident critics will say that. They just saw an opportunity to scratch a bunch of itches at once – good-heartedness, advertising, gambling and Vegas’ most important product – selling you things you could never imagine wanting.

It almost makes you wonder if they harbor a secret itch to take the $160,000 and double down on behalf of the charities for another of their pet projects – the Vegas Golden Knights. If they put it on the Knights to win the Stanley Cup at 200-1, that’s $32,000,000. Then if they took that and . . .

. . . and before you know it, they’re trapped in the fantasyland of Las Vegas at its weirdest. Maybe it’s just performance art with more money than most of us can eat.