Well, we might have been ahead by 20 after three if we just didn't have those Evans/Cousins scrubs throwing the ball all over the gym in epic fashion, but fortunately they came to life (well...kinda) just enough in the 4th to secure us a sloppy but entertaining preseason win.
Honeycutt ( B- )
-- get sthe better grade than the numbers might indicate. Was active and scrappy in the early going, and showed better balhandling abilities than he had in the scrimmage. A little sloppy with the ball, and his effectiveness tailed as the game went along, but he looked like he belonged.
Hickson ( B+ )
--and a nice bounceback game from Hickson showing what he can do. Looked much more solid in the early going, but but took a while for him to heat up. And what keeps his grade out of the A ranges is that the man he was guarding most of the night (Lee) scored at will against him from the early going. Started using his athleticism to good effect in the 2nd and made a number of bu athletic pays over the course of the night, inclduing a tip dunk follow, and a big back breaing rebound that him snatching the ball with his fingertips way back behind his head. Not known as a passer, but was decently wlling to pass it out of the post, at least in give and go situatioins where he was sure to get it back.
Effort wasn't terrible defensively, but just not effective on that end or able to defend the rim. In the area, buit ont getting anything done.
Cousins ( D- )
-- heh -- because this was a preseason game, his first game of this rushed season, and because it was SO bad, you can sort of laugh about it and just move on. Seemed to be Boogie's response after a while himself. Was just incredibly incredibly loose and sloppy out there from the very beginning. Was ragged trying to overpower Biedrins on the block in the early going and not effective at all in the first quarter. Was missing his FTs and got upset with the calls as he got in foul trouble in the 2nd. And of course the defining trait of the night was just so, SO many TOs. It truly was epic. Pass after pass after pass, either a bad idea or badly executed. It was a race to see whether he would get to 10rebs or 10TOs first. Took a hard jaw breaking crack right on his chin from his own man (Hickson) when they collided after a missed shotthat you could clearly hear. Having had my jaw broken once by a similar blow, I winced, and his dentist may be getting a little Christmas bonus. But did draw two charges, and we kept on putting he and Reke back out there until finally int eh 4th he sloppily rumbled to some sort of life and started making some good plays mixed with the slop. Had a steal and open court pass to Hickson late but got 2, and after the godawful game, came up wtih a big block in the final minute to trigger a semi break that led to Thronton's game sealing three.
Thornton ( A- )
-- probably our best player on the night, yet I have fewer notes on him than anyone because in most ways he was just on and right back into his regular season rhtyhm from last year. Have I mentioned lately what a great signing retaining him was for us? Was hitting early threes, and dropped a very nice pass to Reke on a 4 on 3. Still playing the passing lane gambler on D (where we as a team were much much better this time out) but with Curry going down with the ankle early and Reke handling most of the Monta duties, there was noone of note around to punish him when he gambled and missed. And just like last season stepped up when it mattered and canned the big game winning three from the side for us with 30 seconds to go.
Evans ( D+ )
-- well, like Cousins this was fugly for three quarters before somebody said something to him over on the sideline and he came out and played the 4th much more like himself. The early game for him was more of a mixed bag than it was with Cousins -- he was doing a few good things out there. Hit a standstill three, made anice dish to Thronton on the break, and was again competing well on defense (although still getting caught on screens), and carried the load against Monta Ellis after Curry went down. But like DeMarcus was just simply throwing the ball all over the gym. Those were his turnovers tonight. Not dribbling errors (well, one), or getting stripped in traffic, but rather bad pass after bad pass, trying to thread a nonexistent needle, throwing them just a little too hard or too soft. He and Cousins combined for 16 TOs tonight between just the two of them. Nor was this just a random event. You could see out there, even more than in the first game, Reke playing outside his comfort zone trying to fit into whatever offense we have installed right now. He was coming across halfcourt and at the first sign of resistance, boom, just passed the ball. Once he was dribbling in space for 3 or 4 seconds and you heard somebody yell "move it" from the sidelines and he instantly just swung the ball over to the next guy. Just looked very tentative, trying to feel his way through and juat give the ball here or there. In the third you could see the frustration beginning to mount as he began to make a few selfish plays trying to shoot off balance jumpers of the dribble and whatnot, but it wasn't until he went to the bench and came back out for the 4th that he truly came to life. Somebody must have said something over there because it was night and day. All of a sudden it was back to attacking Reke, and despite some moments of slop we were better off for it, shaking off the third quarter doldrums and closing the Warriros out behind 10pts from Reke, and then Thronton's late heroics. So, not a good game, but a grade saved by remembering who he was late in the game. Finding ways to fit Reke comfortably into whatever we are trying to run this year is clearly a work in progress though.
Fredette ( B- )
-- less exciting game offensively, but in some ways I think a more improtant one than the first game. In the first game Jimmer got hot with his shooting and maybe Golden State didn't quite respect his shooting ability enough. In short, it may or may not have just been a hot game and you didn't know whether he could sustain or succeed as well if he wasn't scorching hot. But in Game 2 Jimmer was just very solid. He displayed a bit of his shooting again (although you saw the Warriors more aware and chasing him off his spots with one or sometimes two guys), he again showed a sound understanding of how to set people up on basic plays like the draw and kick, and maybe most critically he did fine on defense. What defensive issues he had were pretty much strictly size related, which is just going to happen with any smallish guard. In general he just looked solid in all aspects, and so no, he didn't score 20+ points and light it up, but he may have proven something jsut as important: that he's solid enough to be playable even when he's not scorching hot.
Outlaw ( B+ )
-- agreeing with a suggestion made earlier, I think Outlaw's impact exceeded his stats in his this, his debut. He actualy provided a great little rolpelayer boost, playing active and atheltic defense, including two big "Kirilenko who?" blocks inside, and then stretched the defense with several long bombs as we, the Sacramento Kings, suddenly felt all shooty and stuff. His use here as a smallball PF always gets me to squirming but it was against the Warriors, and we may have Dalembert returning now, so its just something that bears watching.
Thomas ( B- )
-- continues to channel his inner Nate Robinson, playing the barking chihuahua and looking like he belongs despite his average guy (not average player) height. Constantly attacking and forcing the action, which is both the good that makes him a contributing force, and sometimes a bad as he defintiely has selfish tendencies and will abruotly just decide to go 1 on the other team every few minhutes. Beat the halfcourt buzzer streaking through half the Warriors roster for a layup. Some bursts in the late 3rd, hitting a three, and then a +1 three on a tough drive. Still selfih at times, but he really does look playable as an emergency/garbagetime 4th guard, and I think really should take the pressure off of us to pcik up a veteran to fill out the backcourt. Might be nice to have the vet ledership, but both our rooks back there can play. As with Jimmer, size is an issue for him on defense, although he's got the full on Napoleon ain't afraid of no giants thing going on, and wades right in amongst the trees.
Thompson ( C- )
-- you know, Jason just may have, in the space of two measely little preseason games, actually played himself right out of the main rotation. Wiht Daly possibly coming back, Outlaw arriving to swing between 3 and 4, and his main competition JJ Hickson flashing his stuff tonight, Joosn just again responded with invisibility. I don't get it. He was actually pretty solid defensively this time out, but again he was nowhere on the boards, and offensively a complete nonfactor. He as just Jason Collins out there. With potentially more dynamic players popping up all aorund him int he rotation, he's in danger of getting lost here, in a contract year.