Some awesome take-aways from tonight
- Ron Artest took over tonight's Kings game when it meant something. The man was tremendously lucky (and at times it's better to be lucky than good) with his bank shot 3-pointer in the final seconds of regulation, but he wanted the rock and kept taking it to the hole. He was unafraid to make shots happen and go to the line when fouled, while Kevin Martin wilted away. He finished with 34 points and was 4-6 from beyond the arc.
- Corliss Williamson played solid minutes and had an amazing 30 points. With Brad Miller out, he stepped up and had Musselman keeping him in, where he produced. Lost in his 30-point effort were a dozen boards and a pair of blocks.
- The Kings shot over 50% for only the 5th time all season. Just imagine if Mike Bibby had ignored my comments made only yesterday, and hadn't opted to shoot EIGHT 3-pointers without one making it. Next time, I stay quiet. Unfortunately, the Kings finally lost when beating this threshold.
- When the Kings gave up the first six points of the third quarter (I hate 3rd quarters), Musselman actually called timeout to stop the bleeding. I was shocked.
- Justin Williams was on the floor. Amusingly, he got a foul about 1/2 a second in. Guy had jitters. Also the fans love their Douby sightings. We were similarly ecstatic that Kenny Thomas was only given 7 minutes to try and embarrass us. He did little harm.
- Kevin Martin was pretty much a non-factor. For somebody who played 45 minutes and should be a team leader, he offered an extremely quiet 14 points. He flat-out didn't want the ball today, forcing it into Artest's and C-Will's hands, passing up the open shot. Even my mom noticed he didn't want to shoot.
- Mike Bibby reminded us why he drives us crazy. Zero for eight from the arc? 3-14 on the game? Anytime the game goes to overtime, you just wonder if he'd made one more pass, or made one more shot. Freakin' Bibby.
- Today, the free-throw shooting DID cost us. Kevin Martin missed a pair of charity stripe heaves. Shareef's free throw shots were flatter than a pool table, and even though the refs gave us 13 more attempts, we couldn't make enough to win the game.
- The third quarter. Again. I thought we were outscored by 10 ... Again. Turns out it was only 8, but I don't understand why that keeps happening. Drives me nutty.
But let's recognize today's game for something. If Artest is killing this team, he's certainly not doing it on the floor. He was the man when he needed to be, and he stepped up. Some day, that will be just enough for this team to win again.