Remember in January, when the Kings would seemingly go weeks competing in every last game, only to fall short at the end and lose? It was such a great improvement over the previous two months that few complained, and when many of us did, it was almost apologetic in nature.
February was rough, with the Kings losing badly enough often enough that the team became a bit depressing. That's changed for the most part, and Sacramento is again competing against even the best teams. The Kings fell in San Antonio 108-103 in a competitive game that saw the Kings have a lead in every quarter but the third. Sacramento had a three-point lead with five minutes and change remaining.
Manu Ginobili took over from there; the spirit of the Bat had been with him, as, for the second time in three games in S.A., a bat flew down around the court in the second quarter. Manu didn't slap this one out of midflight; the fans took care of it. Certainly, though, it imbued the magical Argentine with a sense of purpose and determination. He entered the game when the Kings took their three-point lead, and scored 10 points in the final five minutes to push San Antonio over the top.
The bench was better than expected; Omri Casspi and Jermaine Taylor each scored 16, and Pooh Jeter had 15 points. DeMarcus Cousins and Marcus Thornton shot poorly (combined 9-27), but Thornton had six assists and Cousins had 11 rebounds and five assists.