Kings Takeaways: Three Things We Learned in Preseason Loss to Jazz


SACRAMENTO -- Nowhere to go but up. The Kings were embarrassed on their home floor Thursday evening, falling behind by as many as 38 in the first half. It got worse after the break with Sacramento losing to the Utah Jazz, 132-93. 

The boo-birds came out early and there was nothing head coach Dave Joerger could do to stem the tide. Utah sat its starters in the second half and even that didn't help Sacramento. This was not the type of performance the team was hoping for as they gear up for the season opener next week against this same Jazz team. 

Here are three takeaways from Sacramento's lopsided loss.

The defense is a mess

Utah has been running the pick-and-roll since the beginning of time. The Jazz has stumbled upon a new deadly combination of Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, which is not good for the rest of the league. The duo combined for 31 points on 11-of-14 in 34 total minutes. The Kings need to find a way to slow people down if they hope to compete this season. 

Lid on the basket

The Kings couldn't buy a bucket early, falling behind 39-10 after the first 12 minutes of play. Sacramento shot 14.8 percent (4-of-27) in the first quarter. Two of those made baskets came from rookie Marvin Bagley, who picked up the start at the power forward spot. The other four starters combined for one point on 0-of-11 shooting in the first. 

Baby bigs put up a fight

Despite the lopsided score, Bagley and Harry Giles continued to play hard. Bagley showed off his springy legs, scoring 17 points to go with eight rebounds in 21 minutes of play. Harry Giles struggled to keep Gobert out of the paint, but he aggressively attacked the rim, finishing the evening with 12 points, three rebounds and three steals. This was a tough learning experience for everyone involved, but you have to keep playing, even when everything goes wrong.

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