The Kings were burdened with a difficult task this weekend: play the two best teams in the NBA without their rising star point guard, De’Aaron Fox, nor their up and coming big man, Marvin Bagley.
Coming off a great win against Portland, where the team played exceptional defense, the Kings headed to the Staples Center on Friday to take on the best team in the West.
Sacramento stayed in it until the very end. A questionable no-call to end the game was the deciding factor, as Anthony Davis blocked Harrison Barnes’ game-tying layup attempt at the buzzer to seal a win for Los Angeles.
It was a hard fought loss that won some pride within the hearts of Kings fans as their team proved that they could hang in there with the best, even without Fox and Bagley.
A game against the one-seed Lakers could very well have been enough of a challenge for a team looking to prove itself. But when it rains, it pours. The Kings headed back to California’s capital on Sunday to take on the best team in the NBA, the Boston Celtics.
The Celtics sat at 10-1 with the best record in the NBA, all on top of being on a 10-game winning streak.
That did not perturb Luke Walton’s squad
Behind more excellent defense, overall great team play, and clutch shots from Buddy Hield, the Kings had the lead in the closing seconds against Boston.
Again, against a heavyweight, it came down to the last play in which a floater from Marcus Smart rolled off the wrong side of the rim to give the Kings the one-point victory.
You could hear all of Sacramento let out a synchronous sigh of relief as Smart’s shot barely missed before the subsequent cheers after fans realized what had just been accomplished.
Barring a win against the Lakers on Friday, the weekend could not have gone any better. Sacramento displayed their worth and grit against the top two teams in the league.
The Kings have been playing immaculate defense since their 0-5 start, a key that has propelled them to win games.
To go along with their great D, the team looks to be clicking with one another as each understand their role on the court. Plus, turnovers are down and points scored are on the rise.
Sacramento is 5-2 in the month of November and two of those wins have come without De’Aaron Fox. Just imagine what they will be capable of with a healthy unit.
Luke Walton seems to have found a solution to the Kings’ early woes. Things are looking up in SacTown as the team is finally living up to the hype.