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OAKLAND -- It’s only 90 miles from Sacramento to Oakland but the Kings clearly didn’t have enough in the tank to pose any significant threat to the Warriors in a 128-108 loss on Monday.
Sacramento was playing in the second of a back-to-back and it could have gone either way: The Kings would thrive playing the NBA’s best team or they would deliver a flat performance.
Clearly, it was the latter.
[RELATED: Kings outmatched in 128-108 loss to Warriors]
With the game tied at 11 early, Golden State (23-3) took control with a 25-9 run to race out to a 36-20 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The Golden State cushion was never in serious jeopardy over the remaining three quarters.
“They did a good job of coming out and jumping on us,” Kings interim coach Tyrone Corbin said. “I don’t think we came out with the energy that we needed to, to have a chance to compete against these guys on their floor.”
Sacramento (12-16) allowed a season high 128 points including a game-high 25 points to Klay Thompson.
As potent as the Warriors are, that type of defense is clearly a no-win proposition.
“Defensively, we have to make sure that we’re paying attention to detail and sticking to the game plan,” said Corbin. “We have to make sure we’re doing the right things.”
The Kings weren’t doing the right things inside either as the Warriors -- without Andrew Bogut due to a knee injury -- outscored the Kings 66-46 in the painted area.
“Defensive breakdowns, where a couple of times we’re trying to get guys off the 3-point line and the rotation stops,” said Corbin alluding to the Warriors' interior scoring. “For this team tonight, who is a perimeter-oriented team, to have 66 points in the paint against us is not a good thing.”
Another glaring statistic was the Kings reserves being outscored 62-39 by the Warriors bench, including a career high 18-point performance by Justin Holiday.
“We were hanging in there the first quarter a little bit, when our bench came in they made a run against us,” commented Corbin. “We all have to stick together and make sure we’re ready to come in when we come off the bench.”
Just as the Kings were gassed by a few factors including the Sunday win over the Lakers, conversely the Warriors were well rested last playing on Thursday.
“They were rested,” said Corbin. “You can’t look at that as an excuse. This is the NBA. We have to be ready.”
The Kings are now off until Friday when they host Phoenix. Perhaps a break similar to what the Warriors just enjoyed is what Sacramento needs.
“I think these days will help,” said DeMarcus Cousins, who led the Kings with 22 points, eight rebounds and a magnanimous six assists.
“Time to clear our minds. ... Come back refocused and come back ready to play. That’s all that we can do.”
[RELATED: NBA standings]
THE GOOD: In his first appearance after missing seven games due to a knee contusion, Omri Casspi scored 16 points and garnered eight rebounds in nearly 29 minutes off the bench.
THE BAD: Golden State has offensive firepower, but there was no excuse for Sacramento’s porous defense at Oracle Arena, allowing a season-high 128 points.
THE TAKE: As much as the Kings strive to bring energy every night over 82 games, it isn’t easy. Monday was one of those subpar nights.
Sacramento must leverage the break for emotional and physical health.
Otherwise, the Kings temporary swoon -- having now lost six of their last seven -- could become permanent.