Are the Kings turning the corner?
After a nice win over the New York Knicks on Friday at Golden 1 Center, the Kings had two games postponed due to the NBA's COVID-19 protocols before Wednesday’s matchup in Orlando, Fla. Well-rested and hungry for another win, the Kings were the aggressors from the opening tip against a solid Magic squad.
All five starters scored in double figures for Sacramento, including a breakout game from Buddy Hield. The Kings turned on the jets and opened their four-game road trip with a 121-107 victory.
Here are three takeaways as the Kings picked up a second straight win to improve to 7-10 on the season.
Hield isn’t having the type of season that anyone expected, but he’s showing signs of waking up. In the first year of his four-year extension, the sharpshooter had broken the 20-point barrier just twice in 16 games coming into Wednesday’s matchup in Orlando. He pushed that number to three in the Kings’ win.
In one of his best overall games of the season, Hield knocked down 7-for-12 from long range on his way to 29 points. He added five rebounds, three assists, three steals and a block in the win.
Hield needs to figure out how to make this type of performance the standard. When he is hitting, the Kings are a different team.
Clean the glass
Marvin Bagley is starting to settle into his role with the Kings. The 21-year-old is starting to understand that if he wants to stay on the court late, he has to play defense. If he wants offensive opportunities, he needs to hit the boards and create his own chances.
Against Orlando, Bagley was active on both ends of the court. He set a new career high with eight offensive rebounds and finished the game with a 16-point, 12-rebound double-double.
It was the sixth double-double of the season for Bagley, who is coming on strong over the last five games.
When it matters
Harrison Barnes helped the Kings get off to a fast start in the first quarter, burying two 3-pointers in the opening minutes of the game. With Barnes firing away, the offense opened up, which triggered a balanced first half for Sacramento.
In the fourth quarter, the Kings started letting their big lead slip away and once again, it was Barnes who went to work, this time on the interior.
The veteran forward finished the night with 21 points on 8-for-11 shooting. He added five rebounds and four assists.