Kings Takeaways: What We Learned in 122-112 Loss to Trail Blazers


SACRAMENTO -- Trouble in the Kingdom.

After a 29-point blowout loss to the Phoenix Suns in the opener Wednesday night, the Kings dropped their second straight game to start the 2019-20 season Friday, this time to the Trail Blazers by a final of 122-112 at Golden 1 Center.

Damian Lillard, Anfernee Simons and Hassan Whiteside led the way for the Blazers as they pulled away from the Kings late. Disappointed fans headed to the exits early when the score got out of hand in the final minutes.

Here are three takeaways as the Kings dropped to 0-2 to start the season.

Trouble in the third

For the second straight game, the Kings allowed a team to come out of halftime and dominate the action.

Portland hit Sacramento with a 12-0 run to begin the third quarter. The Kings bounced back to cut the lead to one at 75-74, but the Blazers answered right back. 

Led by Lillard's hot shooting and Whiteside's overpowering performance in the post, the Blazers finished the quarter on a 19-10 run to take a 94-84 lead into the fourth.

De'Aaron Fox kept the Kings from being completely blown out in the quarter, but the moment he steps off the court, Walton's team is in trouble.

Flashes of brilliance

Fox is ready to break out. The third-year guard went toe-to-toe with Lillard, one of the game's best point guards, and more than held his own.

Using his tremendous speed, Fox disrupted the game on both ends of the floor. He finished with 28 points, six rebounds and five assists on the evening to lead Sacramento. 

When Fox hits full speed, there are moments when it looks like he's gliding across the floor.

[PORTLAND PERSPECTIVE: Lillard shows out vs. Kings]

Let it fly

During training camp, Kings coach Luke Walton said he wanted his team to shoot around 35 3-point shots per game. He wasn't joking.

Sacramento shot 15 of 37 from behind the arc, including four makes from both Buddy Hield and Bogdan Bogdanovic. 

With Marvin Bagley sidelined and no true threat in the post, the Kings became slightly one dimensional. Although they shot over 40 percent from 3-point range as a team, they must find a way to diversify their offense.

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