Labissiere, Kings Outshine Suns in Phoenix
A back-and-forth, sloppy affair headed the first three quarters of Wednesday’s contest.
That is until Skal Labissiere’s showcase in the final frame.
With the teams trading baskets to open the second half, Labissiere took over in the final quarter. Tallying 11 points in nearly 18 minutes of play, No. 3 exploded for 21 in the fourth and final frame, including the first 16 points for Sacramento.
It was a breakout performance for the Haitian, who is less than a week away from his 21st birthday. He has prepared for this moment, though, since his arrival to the NBA.
“I’ve been working since I got to Sacramento – the first thing that I did when I got here…working,” he said after Sacramento’s 107-101 win.
Early in the game, Phoenix held a 10-point advantage thanks to an impressive first quarter by Devin Booker, who scored 10 of the team’s 29. Meanwhile, the Kings converted at just a 39-percent clip, falling behind by seven after 12 minutes.
Fortunately, stifling defense allowed Sacramento to quickly climb back into contention. They held their opponents to 32 percent en route to a 26-point frame of their own. Labissiere, Ty Lawson and Kosta Koufos combined for 18 in the second to put Sactown ahead at intermission.
Although Buddy Hield scored seven – a low output in comparison to his recent starts – his defense proved to be key, holding Booker to an 0-of-4 second quarter. The Phoenix guard finished the game shooting just 6-of-26 from the field.
- Labissiere’s final stat line included a career-high 32 points, career-high 11 rebounds and included his first career three-pointer and double-double.
- Willie Cauley-Stein just missed a rare 5-by-5 line, with 14 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, four steals and four blocks.
- Georgios Papagiannis recorded a career-best three blocks.