Clutch Collison Pushes Kings to Second Straight W

In a back-and-forth battle, the Sacramento Kings defeated the Memphis Grizzlies on a pair of late freethrows, 91-90.
by Benedict Tagle

From the tip, the game between the Kings and Grizzlies was a close affair. The two teams saw 13 ties and had 14 lead changes.

The Kings and Grizzlies each shot well in the first frame, both at just over 47 percent. Darren Collison, who scored 10 points on a red-hot 80 percent from the field, led all scorers through one.

The next frame was more indicative of the overall game, with both teams showcasing defensive prowess. The Grizzlies were held to just 31.6 percent from the field, and just 16.7 percent from downtown. The Kings were held to low numbers as well; with the exception of Anthony Tolliver, no Kings scored over 3 points in the quarter.

The second half continued to see defense make its mark on the game. In the third quarter, the Kings held the Grizzlies to even lower numbers than the previous frame, limiting Memphis to just 28 percent from the field and 10 percent from long distance. The penultimate quarter finished with the Kings holding a narrow margin of just six points.

The fourth saw Memphis jump back into the game, with the Grizzlies grabbing the lead after the halfway point in the period, their first since early in the second half. From that point, the lead was exchanged multiple times, including in the final minute of play. Zach Randolph made two free throws with just 32 seconds left in the game to push the Grizzlies ahead 90-89.

Unable to score on their next possession, the Kings needed a defensive stop if they were to keep their chances to win the game alive. They did just that, forcing Mike Conley to miss a 17-foot jumper. With 14 seconds left, the Kings turned to No. 7, who drew a foul on Andrew Harrison for two free throws. Making both of his attempts from the charity stripe with five seconds left on the clock, the Kings held on for the narrow victory.

In an up-and-down affair between the two Western Conference foes, the game was characterized by its grit and defense. Overall, the two teams each shot under 50 percent from the court and 25 percent from long distance.

The Kings next game will come against another Western Conference squad in the playoff race, with the Utah Jazz visiting Golden 1 Center on Wednesday.

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