The Sacramento Kings were defeated by the Portland Trail Blazers tonight by a score of 97-83. Here are the key notes to take away from tonight’s contest.
New Starting Five?
Similar to the Kings’ second preseason game against the San Antonio Spurs, Sacramento’s head coach, Dave Joerger, opted to start a lineup solely of young talent. In fact, Joerger decided to sit all the veterans on his team tonight including De’Aaron Fox and Bogdan Bogdanovic. The starting five consisted of Frank Mason III, Buddy Hield, Justin Jackson, Skal Labissiere, and Willie Cauley-Stein.
In the first quarter, the youth of Sacramento played solid as they showed energy and improved their execution on offense. But as the game progressed, the growing pains started to come for Sacramento as Portland, led by Damian Lillard, was too much for the young and shorthanded Kings to handle.
The Kings were able to remain competitive in the first three quarters, but the Blazers went on a big scoring run in the final period which won them the game in comfortable fashion.
Players of the Game?
For the match, top players for the Kings were Skal Labissiere who recorded 13 points and 7 rebounds, Justin Jackson who scored 16 points, and Frank Mason III who recorded 13 points, 5 rebounds, and 3 assists.
Expect tonight’s performance to be a sample size for what the regular season holds for the Kings. The young talent for Sacramento will learn a lot of lessons this upcoming season, but on the other hand, it will be so much fun to watch how they develop with each other as time progresses. A lot of raw talent that looks to be improving by the game.
The process of getting better will continue Thursday at the Staples Center as the Kings will face off against the Los Angeles Clippers.