Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) looks at his hands after being fouled and missing a shot against the Golden State Warriors in the Kings season opener at Sleep Train Arena. Hector Amezcua hamezcua@sacbee.com
Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) looks at his hands after being fouled and missing a shot against the Golden State Warriors in the Kings season opener at Sleep Train Arena. Hector Amezcua hamezcua@sacbee.com

Kings Blog

Jason Jones, Sacramento Kings beat writer

Kings Blog

Cold-shooting offense can’t keep up with Golden State

By Jason Jones

jejones@sacbee.com

October 29, 2014 11:11 PM

One game into the 2014-15 season, the new Kings offense looked exactly like the old Kings offense.

There were turnovers, missed shots aplenty, excessive dribbling and just about anything else associated with bad offense in Sacramento’s 95-77 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday night at Sleep Train Arena.

This season is supposed to be about ball movement, player movement, shot selection and good defense.

The Kings weren’t bad on defense, but holding the potent Warriors to 95 means little if the offense is disjointed.

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“Offensively, I’m very disappointed in the effort,” Kings coach Michael Malone said. “I thought we played very selfishly, did not move the ball, pounded the ball. We looked very similar to the Sacramento Kings of last season.”

They also looked like the preseason Kings who struggled to take care of the ball.

Sacramento committed 27 turnovers that led to 26 Warriors points. The Kings made just 24 shots in the game.

Furthermore, the Kings had only 13 assists, shot 30.8 percent and couldn’t get out of their own way.

Darren Collison had eight assists. No other King had more than one. Meanwhile, the Warriors collected 21 assists on an poor shooting night.

That will make for a long Thursday for the Kings, who have preached that they would share the ball but failed to put that into practice against the Warriors.

“We’re going to watch film (today) to show the overdribbling, the holding, the lack of ball movement,” Malone said. “The lack of willingness to move the ball.”

Golden State opened the third quarter with a 22-4 run to lead 73-58 and coast in the fourth despite shooting 44 percent overall.

The Warriors, who have two of the best three-point shooters in the NBA in Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, shot 22.2 percent (6 of 27) from long range.

The Warriors also committed 22 turnovers.

The Kings would take those defensive numbers most nights and will benefit if their offense can produce.

“We put them through a lot of good things on the defensive end, so the offense should be the easy part,” Malone said. “We just don’t have everybody buying into the ball movement, trusting each other, and playing for each other at all times.”

DeMarcus Cousins led Sacramento with 20 points and 11 rebounds but shot just 4 of 14. Rudy Gay added 14 points but also struggled from the field, shooting 5 of 15. In addition to his eight assists, Collison had 13 points and five steals but shot 4 of 12.

Gay said one night is no reason to panic.

“It’s our first game of the season,” Gay said. “You can’t say it’s a step back. It’s a learning experience. Obviously, we’ve got a lot to work on. Our defense has been pretty good … we have some positives to take from the game. We also have to work on the negatives, which are the turnovers and also our offense.”

Curry led the Warriors with 24 points and five assists. He also had six steals. Thompson had 19 points and six assists.

Marreese Speights added 16 points off the bench for the Warriors.

The Kings led 49-47 at halftime despite abysmal shooting.

Sacramento shot 31.1 percent in the first half but attempted 23 free throws, making 19, to hold an advantage.

Follow The Bee’s Jason Jones on Twitter @mr_jasonjones and read more about the team at www.sacbee.com/kings.