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Kings 84, Lakers 83: Fox is Clutch Again!

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Buddy Hield led the way in an ugly victory against the Lakers.

NBA: Sacramento Kings at Los Angeles Lakers Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

No April Fool’s jokes here. This win makes the draft position more interesting, but I’ll always take a Kings win over the Lakers, even if it sucked like this one.

The first quarter was relatively quiet, but we saw some great plays made by the Kings. De’Aaron Fox and Bogdan Bogdanovic showed off their passing skills, Buddy Hield made a three from Sacramento, Skal Labissiere got in some easy dunks, and most notably, we saw a debut! Nigel Hayes got an immediate look from three, but was off. Jack Cooley also made an appearance and got in five rebounds while JaKarr Sampson got minutes too. But Julius Randle is something else. Kings trailed 22-19 anyways.

Sacramento opened the second with some horrid shooting. Frank Mason III and Labissiere were off to bad shooting starts in the quarter. Alex Caruso looks like a smaller Kosta Koufos. Okay, back on track, I liked seeing Hayes being all over Randle that led to a miss. Eventually, Fox was not given an obvious foul but Kentavious Caldwell-Pope was. Typical from refs in this match-up. As the quarter ended a 43-43 tie, Hield was the talk of the first half, scoring 17 points on 7/9 shooting off the bench.

After a great alley-oop finish by Willie Cauley-Stein, he would go on for five fouls plus a technical which forced him out of the game. Like Greg mentioned previously, we’re still waiting. And then Nigel Hayes scores his first basket as a King on a wide-open corner three from Fox! The only unfortunate note from the third was that Skal injured his ankle and was ruled out. Lakers led 64-60.

BUDDY DUNK AND ANOTHER CLUTCH BASKET BY FOX SEALS IT! #AllYouNeedToKnowFromTheFourth

Best Performers

Buddy Hield was absolutely amazing in the first half with 17 points, only to have two in the second half. However, those two points came on a fastbreak dunk after a steal to give the Kings a 82-80 lead in the final seconds. Hield also had four steals to lead every player. Don’t overlook that stat. He led the Kings in scoring off the bench.

Bogdan Bogdanovic shot the ball very well today, but it was surprising to see him not shoot more. He scored 15 on 6/7 shooting.

De’Aaron Fox was off with his shot tonight, but came up big when needed. He scored 14 and also dished out six assists.

Notable Stats

Both teams shot at or less than 40%, which explains the ugly scoreline. Both teams were also bad from the free throw line.

Both teams had 47 rebounds, Lakers had more assists and blocks, and Sacramento had more steals.

Kings had more fouls but the Lakers had more turnovers, as shown at the end of the game.

Quick Takeaways

In his debut, Nigel Hayes played 21 minutes and scored three points on 1/7 shooting (1/4 from three) and 0/2 from the line. He also had one assist, one block and three rebounds. First game nerves?

Justin Jackson only made one runner and did literally nothing else but struggle.

JaKarr Sampson had four blocks in 16 minutes.

Next Game

The Kings travel to Phoenix to take on the Suns this Tuesday at 7:00 PM PST.

The Game in One Sentence

Always and forever, luck the fakers!