For the first time in the Sacramento Kings’ 2021 Summer League run, Davion Mitchell faced another top-10 lottery pick in Stanford’s Ziaire Williams, who was traded from New Orleans to Memphis on Draft Night.
However, the story of Friday night’s game was the Kings’ role players. Every player who checked in for Sacramento put points on the board.
The first quarter was a defensive display. Queta served up 3 blocks in the first five minutes of play to go alongside one field goal. Anything that the Grizzlies wanted in the paint was simply not happening thanks to the big man out of Portugal. Right on cue, a steal from Murkey led to a three-pointer from Schakel to end the quarter.
Neemias Queta moves his feet well enough here to stick with Aldama and block his shot pic.twitter.com/8BIfdSggia— Aram Cannuscio (@AC__Hoops) August 14, 2021
A 9-0 run for the Grizzlies to open up the second quarter left a few defensive holes that might’ve been left in the excitement of the opening frame. Coach Bobby Jackson ran a various string of rotations, playing 10 guys through the first two quarters. Davion Mitchell had two steals that didn’t convert to offense, but was a healthy reminder that the #SummerKings are making a defensive statement.
There are so many things Mitchell does that don’t even necessarily translate on the box score, but the pressure being applied on both ends of the floor were such welcomed signs of what is to come in the Kings season ahead. He had clamps on Aldama, almost forcing a strip before a foul was called on Emanuel Terry.
The exclamation point was Mitchell’s step-back buzzer beating three-pointer to end the first half, putting the Kings up on the Grizzlies 42-37.
Stepback at the buzzer— NBA (@NBA) August 14, 2021
Davion Mitchell creates space and drains the triple heading into halftime on ESPNU! #NBASummer pic.twitter.com/uVB0TJiRzM
After ending the half, Mitchell opened up the third frame with three makes from beyond the arc, showing off an offensive flare to the already established defensively-driven arsenal.
Jahmi’us Ramsey and Davion Mitchell combined for 38 points (half of the team’s production) through four quarters of play with 19 points a piece.
Sacramento closed out the game with a victory 90-75. Really bright spots in both rookies, along with strong show-outs from Ramsey, King, Terry and Woodard.
The Kings improve to 3-0 in the tournament and look to Sunday’s match-up vs. Dallas for one final game before the championship contest.