SACRAMENTO -- Even without Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons and Josh Richardson, the Philadelphia 76ers are a tough team. The Kings learned that the hard way Thursday night at Golden 1 Center.
Needing a win to keep pace in the race for the No. 8 seed, the Kings came out flat and the Sixers (38-25) punished them early. Sacramento made a handful of runs, but Philly always seemed to have an answer.
Tobias Harris lit the Kings up for 28 points and 14 rebounds. Shake Milton added 20 and Al Horford bullied his way to 18 points and eight rebounds as the 76ers pulled out the 125-108 win.
Here are three takeaways as the Kings dropped a tough one at home to fall to 27-35 on the season.
From the opening moments of the game, the Kings let the 76ers shooters wide open on the perimeter. The plan didn’t work and the team made absolutely no attempt at an adjustment.
Philly is middle of the road in the league in 3-point shooting percentage, but they couldn’t miss in Sacramento. They hit 17-of-37 from deep, including multiple makes from five different shooters.
Teams get hot, but the Kings left Philly wide open and they paid the price.
The Buddy Hield Experience
Hield had a rough night. And then he didn’t. And then he did.
Since moving to the bench, the Kings’ sharpshooting guard has struggled to find his niche. Against Philly, he got back to basics - shooting the 3-ball. He finished the night 22 points on 6-of-10 shooting from long range.
Shooting 3-pointers is only one aspect of the game. In 24 minutes of action, Hield finished with just one rebound and one assist. He also turned the ball over three times forcing the action and picked up four fouls, most of which were of the head scratcher variety.
The Kings need Hield to find his way. They also need him to do more than just hit 3-pointers.
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De’Aaron Fox continued his strong play, but it came in a losing effort. The Kings’ starting point guard and leading scorer dropped in 23 points on 9-of-17 shooting and chipped in seven assists in the loss.
Fox to the hoop 🤩 pic.twitter.com/ynnKsfVFPU— Kings on NBCS (@NBCSKings) March 6, 2020
Since the start of the new year, Fox has been consistently great for the Kings. He’s stepping into a leadership role and beginning to show signs of being a closer.
It wasn’t enough against Philly, but it was another strong performance from Fox.