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Kings 78, Mavs 101: House of Cards

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All it takes these days is one run to completely knock the fight out of the Kings

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

34-20 second quarter against Golden State. 39-22 third quarter against Toronto. 31-21 third quarter against Cleveland. 37-22 third quarter just against Klay Thompson. Its become a hallmark of the Tyrone Corbin-led Sacramento Kings where one big run essentially ends the game. And today, nothing really changed, where a 37-20 second quarter basically K.O.ed the Kings, as the Mavericks coasted the rest of the way to a 101-78 victory.

Lets face it, there is nothing to play for left this season. The players feel that. When the team goes through a stretch of bad play and the offense doesn't come easily, the players don't have the willpower or the confidence in their teammates to remain focused. Little mistakes start piling up, the mental block gets bigger and bigger, and all of a sudden the team is looking up at a 20 point lead. The Kings have faced a 20 point deficit in 6 of the last 7 games, and have lost 10 of the last 11.

DeMarcus Cousins was the only player this game to show any kind of life or fight. With 23 points, 11 rebounds on 16 shots, he was on an island offensively. Darren Collison was decent, but only had 6 points before he was knocked out with abdominal injury in the second quarter, which he would never return from. Ramon Sessions was alive I guess, scoring 7 points on 2/3 shooting. Besides that, it was a graveyard. Rudy Gay was 2/13. Ben McLemore was 2/9, included 1/7 from three. Nik Stauskas and Ray McCallum came off the bench firing away to no avail, combining for 3/20 shooting. The team combined for 36.7% from the field and 14.3% from three, with 13 assists to 18 turnovers. The defense was bad, and if it wasn't for some unusually bad shooting from Dallas, it would have been even uglier than it was. The six minute stretch in the second quarter, where Monta Ellis did most of his damage on the night, was especially brutal to watch.

If the front office keeps things the way it is now, its going to be brutal for fans to make it all the way to April before this season mercifully ends. From what it sounded like from people there, Sleep Train Arena was almost ready to revolt, and by the time the fourth quarter winded down, it was like a library. Last year, Pete D'Alessandro came out guns firing reshaping the roster. If the front office doesn't want the entire city to tune out, its time to dust off the pistols.

For the opponent's perspective, visit Mavs Moneyball