The Sacramento Kings defeated the Memphis Grizzlies 102-90 on Wednesday. Following the game, head coach George Karl and his players shared their thoughts with the media on what went right. They also stressed the need to maintain 48 minutes of energy and limiting turnovers as they welcome the San Antonio Spurs into Sleep Train Arena on Friday.
What Went Right
Karl: "The first half had some good stuff … I thought we looked like we got some things done with practice and it was good. And then the wrestling match began and they knocked us around and they got the lead, but I thought we played their game in the fourth quarter and played it better than they did. We got second possessions, we got offensive rebounds. Rudy Gay was very good with his shots and our offense was flowing. But when you hold a team to 14 points in the fourth quarter, it's a sign that you can play both sides of the court."
DeMarcus Cousins: "Memphis is a physical team. They try to get into other teams' head with their physicality, but I think we did a great job of playing through it, keeping our composure and like I said, we pulled out a tough one ... I think it was a full team effort. Everybody played together and we got a good one."
Rudy Gay: "Before, this is a game that probably would have got away from us because we would have put our heads down as soon as they tied the score and went up one - we would have felt like we were out of the game, but basketball is a game of runs. And I think the style of play that we're doing right now helped us because we see a couple of shots go in, couple of easy baskets go in and now we're back in the game and we're up again. So I think we just stuck with what we know."
Jason Thompson: "They're a real gritty team that tries to out-physical you. I think for the most part, we handled that and tried to be the physical team too and finish plays."
Ben McLemore: "I think we shared the ball tonight. We had a lot of assists tonight, we moved the ball, played together. Turnovers kind of killed us too but still we tried to stay with it. We tried to stay with it out there and keep competing because we knew they were going to be aggressive, so we just had to continue to be aggressive with them."
What Went Wrong
Karl: "I'd like to see the game get more flow and more fast in the second half. It seems like all the games that we've played, we kind of run out of gas somewhere end of the second quarter. And sustaining the energy in this building especially, to play 48 minutes of pace and energy, I think we can be very good."
Cousins: "Turnovers, for one. There's still a lot of things we could have did better in the system tonight. Continuing to run throughout the game, trying to run for 48 minutes, executing better. I mean, there's a lot of things we can take from it - a lot of small mistakes and a lot of major mistakes, but we'll continue to work. We'll get better at it."
Gay: "They really beat us up on the boards today, you know, offensive boards. We have to figure out a way, especially when we go small, we have to still get rebounds."
McLemore: "Definitely, just limit the turnovers."
What's Next: The San Antonio Spurs
Karl: "We've got to play a tough San Antonio team that is kind of on a losing streak a little bit and it won't be easy. I don't think Pop [Gregg Popovich] will be resting any of his guys. I think he'll have a full crew out there for Friday night."
Gay: "They're 0-4 after the All Star Break so they're going to come in trying to get this win so we definitely have to be ready for them."
Thompson: "They're always a tough team, obviously the defending champs, so just got to try to continue to play to the level that we did tonight."
McLemore: "They're the Spurs, so they'll find a way. So right now, getting this win tonight will help us get ready for San Antonio. So we just watch film, get ready and prepare ourselves."