Kings’ Rookie Duo Shines in Dominant Win over Chicago
The Sacramento Kings began a four game home stand with a Sunday matinee against the Chicago Bulls. Celebrating team mascot Slamson’s birthday, the rookie dynamic duo of Marvin Bagley and Harry Giles put on a show off the Kings bench, leading Sacramento to the 129-102 victory. Their 34th win of the season is the most they have won in a single year since the 2007-2008 campaign.
“It was a good night for us,” said Kings head coach Dave Joerger, “the basketball bounced our way, we made a lot of shots, we got a lot of loose balls… for us, it doesn’t happen by accident. I thought our guys were dialed in”.
The Kings stumbled a bit out of the gate, overcoming a slow start after returning from their road trip early this morning. The fatigue wore off quickly in the second quarter as Sacramento outscored Chicago 32 t0 17. That dominance carried into the third quarter, where the Kings outscored the Bulls 43-31.
On the night, Sacramento shot 52% from the field and a welcomed 81% from the free throw line. The Kings led by 37 at one point, thanks to a dominant 80 points in the paint.
“It was something that we needed,” said De’Aaron Fox after the game, “We came out, we played, we guarded and shots went in…”.
Bagley and Giles shined off the bench, combining for 37 points on 60% shooting, 15 rebounds, five assists and three blocks. Neither played more than 21 minutes.
“I’m starting to come into myself. It takes some time…Right now we are just trying to improve – make our mark here…I feed off my teammates. With Marv, he is an easy guy to play with” said Giles.
“I’m just out there playing, having fun, getting up and down,” added Bagley, “It’s great playing with Harry. We are starting to figure out each other. I wouldn’t stay it started recently, it started a while back”.
Fox talked about the difficulties of getting used to the league as a rookie, but praised the growth and work ethic of his two young teammates, “They have gotten better every single game”.
The Kings haven’t been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, but their chances are pretty slim. Over five games back from the Los Angeles Clippers in the 8th seed, Sacramento is going to need a lot of help to make it in. However, Kings players aren’t concerned about anything outside of handling their business the remainder of the season.
“We are still going out trying to win every game. Nothing has changed” said Fox.
The Kings continue their home stand on Tuesday when they host the Brooklyn Nets.