As Sacramento gets set to host L.A., find out how Evans and Thornton aim to slow down the rival’s high-scoring star. Plus, Thompson looks forward to playing in front of a loud home crowd.
– The Kings on Wednesday square off against the division rival L.A. Lakers and perennial All-Star Kobe Bryant, a task Tyreke Evans says he’s fully prepared to handle.
“I’m going to be ready for the challenge,” said the Memphis product. “I know he’s going to make tough shots (but I have to) just keep him working 48 minutes.”
Marcus Thornton adds a major point of emphasis is not letting Bryant establish a comfort level on the court in the early going.
“(I have to) try to contain him as much as possible,” he said. “You know he’s going to get his shots up and you can’t let him get into a zone. Kobe is Kobe – you can’t let him get off to a quick start.”
– After Tuesday’s practice ended, Kings Head Coach Keith Smart watched game film with Isaiah Thomas, instructing the point guard to run a fast-paced offense and to control the tempo.
“I took Isaiah through some film right away to (show him) how quickly you have to be able to get into scoring areas with the basketball,” said the Kings leader. “If you’re pushing it (quickly), other guys will (run) the floor with you.
“(The Lakers) are pushing the pace a little bit more now,” he continued. “We want to run the basketball, too. We want to get our pace up and down the floor (and) get ourselves into a situation where we can get easy baskets.”
– Thompson says the team is excited to play in front of a frenzied crowd and feed off Kings fan energy against L.A.
“I think the times when the crowd is into it and we start off with a lot of energy, we usually have a consistent 48 minutes,” said the Rider product. “The way to hopefully start a winning streak (is) with the crowd being behind us.”
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