Kings

How Cory Joseph kept Kings calm during ugly third quarter vs. Wizards

/ by Ali Thanawalla
Presented By KingOfTheNight
Kings

Cory Joseph has seen a lot during his nine-year NBA career. But his young Kings teammates haven't.

So when the Kings were in the midst of blowing a 27-point lead in the third quarter Tuesday night, it was up to Joseph to settle things down.

So, what did he say?

"To stay poised," Joseph told Jim Kozimor and Jerry Reynolds on Kings Postgame Live after the team held on to beat the Wizards 133-126. "[The Wizards] are a good team. They're playing for something. They're the ninth seed in the East. They're playing hard. We knew they were going to come out, we were up big in the first half, so they came out with a lot of aggression, we just had to stay poised and get our mental [focus] back."

The Kings led 76-49 at halftime, but the Wizards blitzed them in the third quarter, outscoring Sacramento 46-19.

It was one of those "What just happened?" moments for the Kings and their fans.

But Joseph and the Kings regained control in the fourth quarter and pulled out the much-needed win.

[RELATED: How Joseph evolved into Kings' leader]

Part of the reason the Kings signed Joseph was for his veteran leadership. With so many young, talented players on the roster, coach Luke Walton and general manager Vlade Divac needed someone that could be the calming voice and mentor players like De'Aaron Fox.

 

On Tuesday night, in addition to his 14 points, four assists and four rebounds, Joseph showed the veteran leadership that the Kings were hoping for when they signed him this offseason.