Kings

Iman Shumpert reveals the story behind Kings' #PurpleTalk mantra

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Iman Shumpert reveals the story behind Kings' #PurpleTalk mantra

If you've been following Iman Shumpert or the Kings on Twitter since last summer, you've probably seen a hashtag sprinkled throughout their tweets.

#PurpleTalk

Much like 'The Scores' nickname that Shumpert created, #PurpleTalk came about as a way to build a bond and a new identity in Sacramento.

But how exactly did #PurpleTalk come into existence?

NBC Sports California's Kayte Hunter recently sat down with Shumpert for a lengthy interview and asked about #PurpleTalk.

Kayte Hunter: I want to talk to you about Purple Talk. Where did that stem from? Where's the origin of that?

Iman Shumpert: [Frank] Mason. So, Frank Mason. I don't know if people know, Frank Mason is very much so, he reminds me of me just form Virginia. And I say that because, he couldn't fake it if he tried. How he delivers things, you'll believe it because he doesn't care if you don't believe it. After he says it, that's just what he said and he's walking off and there's no real facial expression that's coming with it, so it becomes funny because you don't know if he's serious, if he's joking. But then he'll turn around and go 'Ha.' So you know it's funny. 'Oh, it's cool to laugh.'

Frank just says a lot of things that stick. And initially, when I was doing it, I was ... he would say 'talk' after certain things and I was like 'That's so dope.' And most times, the older guys don't usually hop onto what the young dudes say. But me having a daughter, like, when I make music, when I pick a beat, my daughter picks the beat. I play a bunch of them and the one [she likes], she stops playing with her dolls and says 'Daddy, I like that one.' And I know, 'Okay, I'm going to record on that one' because she has the ear for it, they have the ear for the energy. And what Frank says, it just sticks. He says a lot of different things, it's just that 'talk' was easy. He's like 'Okay, a little Coffee Talk, a little Coffee Talk in the morning, I get it. And everything is something 'talk.'

And then the Purple thing, I was just joking around and just said it one day and it was like 'Ah, that fits.' It's fitting for the Kings. We were trying to figure out ways when I got here, people were saying 'You're the same old Kings.' That's what hater fans from the outside are going to say. 'Y'all the same old Kings. We don't care who's on the team. Y'all not going to the playoffs. Y'all not doing this, y'all not doing that.' So, with me, to shift the culture, you have to shift the energy, you have to shift the mindset, there's gotta be something for people to grab on to.

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You can watch the clip here

Kings takeaways: What we learned in tough 103-101 loss to Knicks

Kings takeaways: What we learned in tough 103-101 loss to Knicks

BOX SCORE

SACRAMENTO -- Playing to the level of competition has been an issue all season long for the Sacramento Kings. They have beat some of the best teams in the league, but they have also messed around with a few cellar-dwellers and got burned.

The Kings led by double-digits most of the night, but they allowed New York to climb back in the game in the fourth. With the game on the line, it was a 5-20 Knicks team that made the plays and handed Sacramento a devastating loss on their home floor by a final of 103-101.

Julius Randle bullied his way to 26 points and nine rebounds. Elfrid Payton added 16 points off the bench to help New York pick up their sixth win of the season. 

Here are three takeaways as the Kings blow a golden opportunity against a struggling Eastern Conference opponent and fall to 11-14 on the season.

Inexcusable

After beating the Mavericks, Rockets and Thunder over the last three games, the Kings allowed a bad Knicks team to sneak up and bite them. 

This is a common theme this season. Sacramento has the ability to hang with the best the league has to offer, but they’ve overlooked team like the Hornets, Bulls and now the Knicks. 

A win would have put the Kings within a game of .500. Now they are once again searching for answers. 

Dunking Buddy

Buddy Hield is known for his ability to hoist the 3-ball, which he did plenty of Friday against the Knicks. He also showed off his leaping ability, hammering down a handful of dunks over the unsuspecting group from New York.

Hield torched the Knicks for 34 points on 14-for-23 from the field and 6-of-13 from long range. He added a career-best 12 rebounds for his first double-double of the season and fourth of his career. 

The Kings’ leading scorer has now strung together 10 straight games with 20 points or more. 

Bench troubles

The second unit struggled mightily and may have cost the Kings a victory. The Knicks rallied against the reserves to end the second and third quarters and they continued the trend to start the fourth.
All four players that came off the bench ran negatives in the +/- category, including a negative 12 for Yogi Ferrell and a negative 11 for Bogdan Bogdanovic. 

The group is adjusting to the return of Marvin Bagley, but they have to find a way to keep the momentum in games. 

Kings take trip to Folsom Prison, Luke Walton suits up for justice reform

Kings take trip to Folsom Prison, Luke Walton suits up for justice reform

SACRAMENTO -- It wasn’t your typical Thursday evening. Instead of sitting at home and taking in a few extra minutes of NBA basketball, I dressed in a mandated all black outfit and headed to Folsom Prison to watch Sacramento Kings head coach Luke Walton play basketball with and against a group of incarcerated men.

The basketball was sloppy but entertaining. The emcee of the event wandered around the court making up nicknames for the players like “Skilz," “The ponytailed gangsta” and everyone’s personal favorite, “white shadow.”

There were no fights or risk of danger. A few hundred of the estimated 2,400 residents of the prison sat in the stands eating popcorn and cotton candy and cheering everything from dunks, to the tap dancers at halftime to Vivek Ranadivé, Vlade Divac, Marvin Bagley, Trevor Ariza and Nemanja Bjelica, who were in attendance. 

Before taking the court, players and management met with individuals in a closed-door session. Media members were not allowed in, but Bagley gave a glimpse into what the conversation was about.

“We had a round table discussion earlier before we got to the court, we were sitting in a circle and one of the things I was saying was that basketball isn’t going to be forever it’s something that I do right now, but I’m a person first, just like everybody here,” Bagley said. “To be able to share love, show love, no matter what you’re doing or what you did in the past, no matter what you’re in here for, everybody has an opportunity to move forward and love. I think if we all continue to love one another and have positivity in the world, we’ll get to a place where there’s not as much silly, craziness going on.”

The Kings’ 20-year-old power forward is just starting out on his NBA journey, which will include all kinds of opportunities to get involved and use his platform in unique ways. He was on the sidelines dancing and greeting players coming off the court. He even went over to the stands after the event and took pictures.

“I can’t even really put it into words, it’s something I’ll remember for the rest of my life,” Bagley said. “Coming in, I didn’t know what to expect. I’ve never been to a prison before. You always hear about it and see it movies, but to walk through and see what it’s like, it was definitely eye-opening and something I’ll remember.”


Photo via Sacramento Kings

Opened in 1880, Folsom is a level 2-3 prison. While there are lifers mixed amongst the population, many of the residents will someday find their way back into society, which was the focus of the event.

“Through art, storytelling, and values-based conversations focused on redemption, mercy, and the possibility of a second chance, the REPRESENT JUSTICE Campaign, in partnership with One Community, will aim to humanize incarcerated individuals in the media and public opinion,” the team’s official press release said.

The event was co-sponsored by the Kings, the Milwaukee Bucks and the REPRESENT JUSTICE campaign and it won’t be the last event like this that the Kings will be involved with.

“We're proud to be the first participant in the Play for Justice initiative, which is shining a bright light on the unique issues facing incarcerated people in communities around the country,” Ranadivé said in a prepared statement. “Sports franchises have a unique opportunity to bring about positive change, which is why in the past year, the Kings and the Bucks brought together leaders from across two cities to share best practices and find new solutions to social injustices. This collaboration with REPRESENT JUSTICE is another example of how we can use our platforms for good.”

[RELATED: Holmes comes up clutch on Kings' final possession]

According to the team’s press release, “The games are part of the Campaign’s efforts to engage audiences and spark collective action to demand a fair legal system, dignity for system-impacted communities, and an end to extreme sentencing.”

The game was played outdoors under a makeshift tent brought in by the Kings. Walton’s team came away with the victory, but he was too winded to speak to the media after the game. He had a few dunks, but he looked every bit the part of a 39-year-old who retired from the game six years ago.