SACRAMENTO -- Big consequences. The Sacramento Kings needed a win over the Los Angeles Clippers Friday night to move a step closer to the playoff picture. They didn’t get it.
Los Angeles came out firing to start the fourth quarter and took a big lead. Sacramento rallied late, but they couldn’t get a stop or a rebound when they needed it and fell by a final of 116-109.
Here are three takeaways as the Kings lost a heartbreaker to the Clippers to fall to 31-31 on the season.
With the game on the line, the Kings struggled to get rebounds, but more importantly, they couldn’t stop the buzzsaw that is Lou Williams.
The veteran shooting guard dodged in and out of traffic, hitting one jumper after another. While he finished the night with just 17 points on 6-for-17 shooting, it felt like 50.
When the Clippers needed a bucket, it was all Lou.
Bigs Show Up
The biggest question of the night was about how the Kings would handle Montrezl Harrell. Willie Cauley-Stein and Harry Giles answered that question and then some.
Cauley-Stein was all over the court, running the floor, blocking shots and hitting the glass. LA worked hard to get him into switches, but he held his own and played with energy.
The Kings’ starting center finished the evening with 16 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks. It was one of best performances of the season for Sacramento.
When Cauley-Stein stepped off the floor, Giles went to work down low. The rookie big dropped in 15 points on 7-for-13 shooting and grabbed five rebounds in 16 minutes of action. With Marvin Bagley out, the Kings need more nights like this from Giles.
In the first three matchups between these two teams, Hield struggled to find his range, averaging just 12.3 points on 2-for-20 shooting from long range. On Friday evening, he broke out of his slump against LA in a big way.
Hield was aggressive from the jump, finishing with 23 points on 3-of-8 from 3-point range and 8-of-8 from the free throw line. He added seven rebounds and three assists in the loss.