The Game Thread Dude
KingsFans.com Gameday 2013-2014 Edition
Sacramento Kings v. Detroit Pistons
By Stephen Tetsu, Kingsfans.com Resident Hearing Aid Salesman
Sacramento Kings v. Detroit Pistons
By Stephen Tetsu, Kingsfans.com Resident Hearing Aid Salesman
(Photo Credit: Randy Pench / Sacbee.com)
Father Time catches all, even former NBA superstars.
I know Jason Kidd is officially retired as a player these days but I wouldn’t be half surprised if he could still play better basketball than the effort most of his players put together on Wednesday. For 48 minutes, the Kings pummelled, outran, outshot, and otherwise embarrassed a veritable all-star team from five years ago.
Really, you couldn’t have done it any better. After rattling off a five game losing streak, the Kings made a quick change to the starting lineup with the additions of Jason “What are free throws?” Thompson and Ben “What is gravity?” McLemore and immediately experienced success, boosted by the sudden resurgence of a certain Factory of Sadness off the bench and a renewed focus on rebounding from any big man not named DFC.
Meanwhile, the Nets are old. Like really old. Like older than Larry King old. At one point in the game I’m pretty sure I saw Kevin Garnett fall asleep on the court. It’s either that or he simply forgot to wake up for the game. The only way seeing a collection of some of the best players of the last decade on one team can be less than entertaining is if they’re old as the sand and that’s what we have with the Brooklyn Nets, who are neither good or exciting at this point in the season. Seeing the likes of Kevin Garnett, Jason Terry, Joe Johnson, and Paul Pierce struggling to ride the coattails of the one good, relatively young player left on their roster in Brook Lopez, is sort of like seeing your ninety year old grandfather after he’s been diagnosed with Alzheimers for a few years. He may look close to the same on the outside but where it counts, Elvis has left the building or at least has boarded the tour bus.
I still don’t really understand the Nets’ decision to hire Jason Kidd as their head coach almost before he had officially retired from the league. On the one hand, he’s probably the best all-around point guard of all time (feel free to attack me in your ensuing posts) and one of the smartest guys (when it comes to basketball) to lace them up in quite a while. On the other hand, is handing the reigns of your collection of aging superstars over to a rookie head coach a wise idea when you’ve got a finals or bust mentality? For Pete’s sake, when Nate Mcmillan, George Karl, and Lionel Hollins are all there for the taking and you have an owner who probably swims in his money like Scrooge McDuck, isn’t hiring a rookie head coach just a sign of laziness?
Stat Watch 2013
Barely qualifying for the per 36 mpg stat, Hamady N’Diaye would be on pace for 9 boards and 9 fouls in 36 minutes. Exciting.
- After a pair of games in which he simply steamrolled all comers, Demarcus played one of his quieter games of the season, only putting up 15 and 9 in a foul-shortened minute outing.
- Having had an offnight on the offensive end, Cousins still managed to put up another solid defensive effort. While he’s not exactly Anthony Davis out there, Demarcus is certainly playing the role of paint enforcer better than he has in the past.
- Jimmer Watch, Game 7: One game after seeing his most significant action of the season, Jimmer watched the entirety of the game from the sidelines and boy did he look good doing it. No one is better at looking bemused while watching his teammates run by than Jimmer Fredette. Not only has his place in the rotation diminished, his place as the best basketball-playing member of the LDS church is in danger as well since Jabari Parker is tearing up the college ranks as a freshman.
- Things you’d never thought you’d say a year ago: Travis Outlaw is a valuable piece of our team. While by no means spectacular, the TrOut has been doing a solid job as our first SF off the bench. Always one to give his full effort game after game, Travis is proving he may yet have a future with the team.
- Corliss Williamson: the only assistant coach in the NBA to not wear a tie? I’m sure there’s others but I can’t think of them. One things for sure, I’m not sure Corliss has aged a day since his rookie season.
A selection of comments by Nets fans at netsdaily.com during the game on Wednesday.
7:15: “I've seen so many times over the past hour or so That tonight is a “must win”. Really now? There’s no such thing as a must win in game 7 of 82.”
7:33: “Isn't it funny to think that we’re paying Outlol to play against us?”
7:47 “Lol when have the Nets ever played with effort they’ve always just coasted through games..the only time i’ve seen emotion was JJ buzzer beaters last year…..Can we still trade for Howard?….Cousins? Derrick Williams? Maybe send KG the fossil to researchers”
7:50 “Marcus Thorton is like D.Wade”
7:56 “this is crap Now the fake star is down again wow. Good night folks we know the outcome of this and their the queens and brooke cant dunk on anyone wow.”
7:58 “Im almost about to agree with whoever said we should trade Lopez for Cousins. Lopez is great offensively but he is so soft..Cousins has all the tools and isn’t afraid to go down low and bang with the others..how you can be 7ft and be scared and a baby is beyond me..”
8:17 “We have been okay, barely. The calls are going one way, and we aren’t getting calls on offense. Kings are not getting calls against them on offensive fouls, or Crawford is drawing ticky tack fouls. Momentum gets killed, it has alot to do with calls.”
8:18 “Well if we're gonna suck like we are so far, which I don't believe will last, at least this year's draft class is stacked. I think I may have fallen in love with Julius Randle.” (Editor’s note: The Nets traded their pick to the Celtics)
8:27 “We need a win like this. Yes we weren't playing well in the first half but a lot of Kings were hitting shots they wouldn't usually make. We need to play d come back and beat these secrubs.”
8:58 “HOW IS THAT NOT AN OFFENSIVE FOUL?!?!”
8:58 “He didnt even get hit. Looked like a flop to me”
9:02 “im ready to rage. this is supposed to be our year… we’re supposed to be one of the best teams in the league. instead we make jason thompson and marcus thornton look like ray allen and reggie miller. i dont see any sort of offensive system besides posting up every 5 seconds. ive never been angrier. we’re only a 7 games in so obviously itll get better but its the KINGS!!!!!!!!! SHEEESHHHH”
9:19 “At least Kayte Christensen looks good on the sidelines for the Kings. So they got something going for them besides playing the Nets only one more time this year.”
Tyreke Watch 2013
Presented without comment, Tyreke’s shot chart for the season.
Tony Delk Memorial Award: Absolutely no one.
The Nets were terrible, plain and simple. To receive this award, someone has to go beyond their normal role of scrubitude and play like Lebron. No one on the Nets even came close.
The Grant and Jerry Thespian Award for Excellence in Acting: Jason Terry
Let’s set the scene. Terry is guarding Vasquez in the corner during the third quarter, crowding his personal space (pretty sure they’re now legally married in some countries). The General swings the ball to try and create space for a drive to the hoop. Terry falls back in pain which then quickly switches to indignant rage at getting elbowed in the face. One problem: Terry was completely untouched. Despite his most valiant effort and Chris Paul-esque dramaticism, Terry was instead whistle for the foul and technical, so justice prevailed. Yay.
Thomas Robinson of the Game: Ben McLemore
Ben McLemore’s first game as a starter was not among the best of his young NBA career. Obviously fighting with his own nerves, Ben looked all the part of the 20-year-old we tend to forget he still is. Aside from his one highlight reel dunk, Ben was all over the court… and not in a particularly good way.
Shareef Abdur-Rahim Award 1: Kevin Garnett
Shareef Abdur-Rahim Award 2: Joe Johnson
Shareef Abdur-Rahim Award 3: Jason Terry
Shareef Abdur-Rahim Award 4: Deron Williams
Old, old, old. Someone check those guys for pulses. Then again, they’d probably actually play better if they were dead.
WTF Moment of the Game: Joey Crawford rescinds a technical mid-game. Hell officially freezes over.
From one disappointing team to another. While the Detroit Pistons are significantly younger than the Brooklyn Nets, they aren’t all that better than them, posting the same record as them through these early days of the season.
While their offseason moves were praised by some, things haven’t exactly worked out as planned in the Motor City, prompting head coach Maurice Cheeks to intimate that he may look into some lineup changes if things do not improve. If he is going to switch things up, it’s probably safe to say that his two big men are going to remain the same.
At the power forward spot in Greg Monroe, who we famously (not really) passed on to draft Demarcus Cousins in the 2010 draft. Largely ground bound and stout, Monroe is a skilled big man who utilizes a bevy of moves to score and bring in boards. As things stand, he is probably the best player on that entire team but not as good as Demarcus, though I’d wager there are some Detroit fans who would disagree with that statement.
Monroe’s running mate is former Kingsfans.com draft crush Andre Drummond, an absolute physical specimen who has come along quickly in his second year, pulling down boards and defending the rim with aplomb. Personally, I’m still mad we passed on him in the draft but, hey, when you’ve got a Thomas Robinson, why go for the tall, strong dude who can jump like a gazelle.
The big free agent signing for Detroit is Josh Smith, a great defender who also happens to think that he’s Kevin Durant. While not the cause of the teamwide slump, his dumb shot selection is causing many Detroit fans to express their discontent with a team that they thought would get into the playoffs.
I’ll admit that I’m not the biggest Mo Cheeks fan in the world but when your team has awarded Brandon Jennings a starting job, it may well be the fault of Joe Dumars and his staff more than the newly hired coach.
On the game front, tonight is HERE WE ROAR Night, during which the sold out crowd is aiming to set a new world record for loudest crowd roar. The current record oddly taking place during a 2008 Clippers at Bucks game, I fully expect there to be a new one in place by the end of the night. I also expect to be deaf by the nights end. We’re Sacramento Kings fans, loud is what we do. The game’s sold out but if you still need tickets, I’d check Craigslist or Stubhub.
For those not in Sacramento, the game is on nationally on ESPN. I don’t know who’s calling the game but I think it’s a safe bet that it won’t be the A-crew. For some reason, I don’t see a game between two struggling teams being all that anticipated.
That Time Pooh Jeter and Bobby Brown Started a Smith-Jennings Twitter Feud.
The member of J.R. Smith’s family in question is Chris Smith, a man once called “the worst player in summer league” and commonly thought of as being on the Knicks roster solely to appease his much more talented brother (Since when are 6th men so important that their less talented siblings get the whole riding-the-coattails treatment?). The guys Brandon Jennings think are better than that guy? Everyone’s favorite back-up back-up point guards from the super dark years, Pooh Jeter and Downtown Bobby Brown.
J.R. Smith, not one for civil debate, eventually posted this gem after a short back and forth on Twitter:
Stay classy, kids!
Demarcus versus Detroit’s Front Line: Should be a good one. Monroe plays like Brad Miller… If Brad was bad at shooting. Drummond is a potential beast.
Our starters not named Demarcus versus not sucking: The lineup change worked… for a game.
Our team versus the jitters: We don’t get many national games round these parts.
Kings fans versus hearing loss: I’m predicting hearing loss wins out.
John Salmons versus John Salmons: John Salmons loses. We all lose.
What They're Saying About Us
Opponent Recon: New Franchise Player, Same Kings (Detroit Bad Boys)
Pistons vs. Kings Game Preview (Detroit Bad Boys)
Pistons vs. Kings Game Thread (Pistons Forum)
"Should be a win, but you never know. The Knigs look like the Pistons without inside scoring, so it should be difficult for us to lose. But if Jennings and Smith play like they did against GSW, we could be in for a loss."
"Moose is 5-1 against Cousins since they were drafted. The sole loss was last year in Sacramento where we lost by 2 pts where a furious 4th quarter comeback fell short. I can't wait for Moose to score another win against that punk in Sacto."
Predictions and Closure
Bolstered by a rambunctious crowd, the newly deafened Kings beat the floundering Pistons on national TV 96-90. ESPN immediately declares the Kings to no longer be the worst franchise in sports. Oh, and Sleep Train Arena claims its rightful record as the loudest place in the world.
The Parting Read
"Misfiring on All Cylinders" by Colin McGowan (SOE)