Welcome home Dave Joerger.
After nine years in Memphis, including the last three as the Grizzlies' head coach, Joerger made his first appearance at the FedEx Forum with another ball club Friday night. The end result was a quality 96-92 road win for the Sacramento Kings against a very good Grizzlies team.
Garrett Temple has the rare ability to sense what his team needs and then fill the role accordingly. Sometimes he is asked to be a lockdown defender. Other times the Kings need a distributor. With Rudy Gay missing games, Sacramento needed the 30-year-old guard to score and that is exactly what he has done over the last two games.
Temple finished the night with 17 points on 4-for-11 shooting and added six rebounds, four assists and two steals.With Gay ailing and DeMarcus Cousins struggling with his shot, Kosta Koufos came up big against his former team. The Kings’ 7-footer scored 16 points, grabbed 13 rebounds and blocked three shots in the win.
Cousins began the game shooting 1-for-8 from the field, but he woke up in the second half. The Kings’ All-Star center finished the night with 22 points on 7-of-20 shooting and grabbed nine rebounds before fouling out with a little over a minute remaining.
Darren Collison posted 11 points and six assists and veteran Matt Barnes chipped in seven points, 10 rebounds and three assists off coach Joerger’s bench.
Troy Daniels caught fire late, burying 4-of-9 from long range for 13 points. The reserve guard kept the Grizzlies in the game all the way down the stretch.
Marc Gasol has been the Grizzlies' go-to man on the offensive end this season. He couldn’t find his range from long range against Sacramento, but he still hit the Kings for 20 points and six rebounds.
Mike Conley Jr. returned to the Memphis lineup after missing nine straight games with a fracture in his back. The veteran point guard struggled to find a flow, scoring just eight points and handed out six assists in 28 minutes.
Tony Allen attacked the rim, leading to 16 points and nine rebounds. Zach Randolph scored 10 and grabbed eight rebounds, and Andrew Harrison added 11 points off the bench.
Temple was the catalyst in this Kings win in the first half and Koufos came up big down the stretch. The veterans filled up the stat sheet on the offensive end and both came up big on the defensive end.
Grind. The Kings worked to get a double-digit lead early in the game and then kept the Grizzlies at arms length until the waning moments of the game. Memphis made a late run with the hot shooting of Daniels, but the Kings came away with the big win.
Gay missed his second straight game with a right hip flexor strain and continues to be listed as day-to-day. Omri Casspi was a late scratch due to illness.
The Kings finish their three-game trip Sunday in Dallas against Mark Cuban’s Mavericks before returning to Golden 1 Center Tuesday to face the Portland Trail Blazers.