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Bucks 143, Kings 142: Kings lose a heartbreaker as Overtime becomes Dame Time

Lillard’s buzzer-beating three hands the Kings their first OT loss of the season.
By | 47 Comments | Jan 14, 2024

Jan 14, 2024; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks guard Damian Lillard (0) scores the game-winning three-point basket at the end of overtime against the Sacramento Kings at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

It was an unconventional defeat for the Kings as they fell to the Bucks 143-142. Despite a strong performance from behind the arc and a standout comeback game from Kevin Huerter, who returned from an ankle injury, the Kings couldn’t clinch the victory. Two main factors emerged as pivotal in this game – the friendly home court whistle and “the others” of the Bucks. 

The game started strong for the Kings with De’Aaron Fox lighting it up from the three-point line, exploiting mismatches against Malik Beasley and Andre Jackson Jr. Domantas Sabonis also had a nearly flawless game with 21 points, 13 rebounds, and 15 assists on 9-10 shooting, overpowering Brook Lopez in the post. The eye test to this point told me that the Kings were mostly firing on all cylinders. However, the first half ended much closer than expected with a score of 68-66, thanks to the Bucks’ free throw advantage, plus 12 in attempts.

In the second half, Sabonis continued guarding Giannis Antetokounmpo and did an impressive job at that. Alex Len didn’t fair nearly as well against the Greek Freak as Giannis’ speed proved to be too much for the big man. Despite that, the Kings managed to gain momentum, following an incident that led to coach Mike Brown’s dismissal from the game due to a missed call on Cam Payne while he was defending Fox.

Despite an impressive performance from Kevin Huerter, who concluded the game with 26 points and 10 rebounds, the Bucks’ supporting cast, featuring Bobby Portis, Malik Beasley, and Cam Payne, proved to be too much. Just when it seemed the Kings were gaining momentum, Portis would either dominate in the post or sink another essential deep shot. Heck, Cam Payne had a stretch of about 2-3 minutes where he simply couldn’t miss. Notably, Payne didn’t even play in the Bucks’ previous game.

Regrettably, a tale as old as time, the Kings turned back into a pumpkin at the free throw line when it mattered most. The Bucks, on the other hand, had a successful run, with 27 out of 32 attempts from the line, while the Kings only managed to score on 15 of their 20 attempts. This difference became glaringly apparent during overtime, where Monk and Fox missed crucial free throws that could have clinched the victory. Fox and Malik Monk for the most part balled out with their respective 32 and 28 points, but Damian Lillard’s buzzer-beating three-pointer delivered the final hit, leaving the Kings to exit the court defeated.

In the end, though the Kings demonstrated potential with their revived three-point shooting prowess and Sabonis’s solid performance, their downfall was ultimately due to missed free throws and lost opportunities

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Klam
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January 14, 2024 7:58 pm

Well, at least we got a Mike Brown meme out of tonight’s game.
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mdeedublu
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January 14, 2024 8:01 pm
Reply to  Klam

He was NOT happy. Loved the post-game rant.

Daydreamer
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January 15, 2024 6:44 am
Reply to  mdeedublu

That wasn’t even a rant! It was a super-logical explanation of systematic inconsistency.

Hobby916
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January 14, 2024 8:05 pm
Reply to  Klam

About damn time coaches are speaking up about fouls. The refs have been terrible all season, league-wide.

TheGrantNapear
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January 14, 2024 8:15 pm
Reply to  Hobby916

Reffing has been bad as far as I can remember. It will never change. Nothing can really be done about it. If something could be done, it would have already been done. Same problem in the NFL and it’s not fixable. Bad reffing is latent in sports.

Sacto_J
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January 15, 2024 9:59 am
Reply to  TheGrantNapear

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sacm3bill
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January 14, 2024 8:52 pm
Reply to  Klam

Coach brought the receipts and dropped the mic. Or whatever the kids say nowadays.

Hobby916
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January 15, 2024 4:58 am
Reply to  sacm3bill

Something about it being “fire”?

deepshot22
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January 14, 2024 8:08 pm

Just as I thought it was dumb for the Bucks to keep giving Giannis the ball to shoot free throws at the end of regulation, I thought it was equally as foolish to even in-bounds the ball to Fox with the foul coming. He is just too damn unreliable at the free throw line.

Hobby916
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January 14, 2024 8:13 pm
Reply to  deepshot22

Monk shoots 87% and he missed both.

Klam
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January 14, 2024 8:18 pm
Reply to  Hobby916

An uncharacteristic 6/10 tonight from the line.

deepshot22
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January 14, 2024 8:25 pm
Reply to  Hobby916

I would have felt more comfortable with Monk sinking two after missing two than I would sending Fox to the line.

TerzoM
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January 14, 2024 8:17 pm

Jordi’s fault – need to draw up better plays
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But seriously..
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Russ916
January 14, 2024 8:17 pm

Something I’ve been thinking about lately was whatever happened to T.J. Warren after his injuries, he had some great breakaway games in the bubble and was on his way to becoming one of the best two way players in the league at the time.

I looked into it a little bit and currently he’s not signed to anyone and just needs a chance to show himself, honestly I think we should take a chance on him as he’s only going to cost of a min vet that’s probably not even guaranteed.

Personally think he could be a cheap valuable experiment to run between now and the deadline that could improve the kings bench and can possibly even take barnes or heurter’s place as a starter depending on how productive he is.

Last edited 1 month ago by Russ916
Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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January 14, 2024 8:24 pm

Missed free throws and Brown’s post game presser aside, the Kings still gave up 128 points in regulation. Until the defense is fixed, everything else is secondary.

I don’t care how good the Kings offense is, you just can’t let our opponent shoot 52% from the field 46% from three.

I know folks are going to point to a good game by many Kings, including Huerter finding his stroke, but none of that matters if you can’t stop your opponent from scoring. Poor shooting nights and offensive slumps are not the problem…IT’S THE DEFENSE.

deepshot22
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January 14, 2024 8:28 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Way too many layups. I also don’t get why both Fox and Monk choose to fly by their 3pt shooters instead of staying in front of them. They leave their interior teammate out to dry when they just allow the opponent to waltz into the lane.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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January 14, 2024 8:37 pm
Reply to  deepshot22

Monk is the worst with fly by closeouts and matador POA defense. I get that he’s Fox’s friend, great locker room guy, and spark off the bench, but his offensive capabilities are not really what the Kings need.

This team needs a Doug Christie over a Jamal Crawford type of player.

Rojoking
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January 15, 2024 9:06 am
Reply to  deepshot22

Compounding out of position defense with worse out of position defense!

RikSmits
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January 14, 2024 9:32 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Yup. Like I always say:
live by the 3, die by the D and missed FT’s.

Raiderfusion
January 15, 2024 5:29 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Brown is supposed to be a very good DC, but I don’t see it. All these players have been stars in college, and if not guarded the can get the hot hand , and your team is in trouble. That’s what happening to us right now. I would like to know why Fox was playing such nonchalance Defense. Arguably a top 2 or 3 shooter, and you’re not looking for D, as everybody in that building knew who was taking that last shot, and not blanketing him was a total screw up. I don’t blame Fox for the missed FT, like you said that was all on the D.

jwalker1395
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January 14, 2024 8:24 pm

This loss was better than a lot of our wins. Kings played inspired basketball, just came up short. Super fun game and an awesome finish.

SelecaoKOJ
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January 14, 2024 8:25 pm

Does it really matter? What Heurter, Monk, Sabonis, Fox did on Offense. At the end of the day. The Kings allowed The Bucks to shoot 52-46.

Talk about all the fine offensive performances ad nauseum. It’s still a loss. At the end the King of Clutch does what he always does.

Team defense is atrocious. Bucks are not any better on D by the way. And they may be worse defensively.

BeTheBall
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January 14, 2024 8:42 pm
Reply to  SelecaoKOJ

Unfortunately, barring a complete roster overhaul, defensive improvement is out of the question.

Aside from Keegan, who is good as far as the team goes, but still pretty mediocre in the grand scheme of things, we have nobody who fits in the average or above range. They’re also not about to magically improve at this point in their careers.

Hobby916
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January 15, 2024 7:21 am
Reply to  BeTheBall

Complete overhaul might be a little much. Adding 2 good defenders would make a drastic difference. Thybulle, Caruso, Okoro, etc.

Fox has gotten better, but not great. Monk is still bad, Domas does what he can, and Keegan is pretty good and getting better.

Jack
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January 15, 2024 7:30 am
Reply to  BeTheBall

The Kings don’t need a complete roster change they only need to get 2 players to play defense. One at SG and one at the 3 or 4 spot. The rest is good.

Jack
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January 15, 2024 7:28 am
Reply to  SelecaoKOJ

IMO unless a lot happens to change things Foz isn’t going to win Clutch Player of the Year. Not like he was last year.

BeTheBall
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January 14, 2024 8:31 pm

Let us all come together, bow our heads and pray that Kevin Huerter has busted his slump.

If not, I would like to refer him to these wise words from Mookie Wilson:

1000154714
BuffaloDiaspora
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January 14, 2024 10:37 pm
Reply to  BeTheBall

I always preferred punk/grunge legend Mookie Blaylock

Alice-in-Chains-with-Mookie-Blaylock-poster-February-17-1991
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January 14, 2024 10:50 pm

Pearl Jelly

rockbottom
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January 14, 2024 9:44 pm

Sad that a once in the history of the NBA performance by Sabonis ends in a loss . He is the only player to have a 20+ point, 15 assist , 10+ rebound. Game on 90% shooting since league started keeping assists in 1955 .

RikSmits
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January 14, 2024 9:53 pm
Reply to  rockbottom

Not to take away from his game, but we get those random “historical” stats every week.

”Only player to average 23 points, 16.5 rebs with a fg% of over 58.3 over a span of four games on the road!!!” Etc.

Hobby916
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January 15, 2024 5:02 am
Reply to  RikSmits

…In the cold, above the Mason-Dixon line.

rockbottom
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January 15, 2024 6:02 am
Reply to  RikSmits

No it was a one of in History . I am impressed clearly your not . I enjoy NBA basketball especially the Kings and individual achievements are a big part of it .

TheGrantNapear
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January 15, 2024 5:53 am
Reply to  rockbottom

That’s actually an impressive stat and not a randomly plucked one using classifiers.

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January 14, 2024 10:19 pm

comment image&ct=g

Kings are mostly winning and in this game, they were competitive, which is my driving hope every season.

But man, oh man – big time airway alert! Choke city on those free throws – especially from Malik Monk. Very uncharacteristic as we’ve seen him make those pressure filled shots many a time.

Glad to see Red Velvet back, worried about Keegan’s injury. Domas is amazeballs. Fox as well.

Love that Coach Brown cares so much, but I don’t want to see him become unhealthy over it. We’ll get’em next time, Coach.

I have to remind myself this is still house money, the Kings are winning. A pint of ice cream was my comfort tonight. (Acme Valley Fudge Brownie – whoo weee!)

HongKongKingsFan
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January 15, 2024 6:06 am

Really really love to see the team being so focus………

few unforced turnover, they took care of the ball, with only 9 turnovers….
Good ball movement….

HUSTLE…..(both Barnes and Sabonis)…..

Was looking for a win after we led by 6 in OT….but we just lost on the line is disapointting…

Hoping to see the same intensity for the rest of the remainder of the games…

Hobby916
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January 15, 2024 6:44 am

Hopefully they learn from this loss. Play hard, protect the ball, and good things will happen.

Coach finally made a decision that the guard depth is wildly inconsistent and went big with a shortened rotation.

HongKongKingsFan
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January 15, 2024 6:55 am

Forgot to say, I like Jordi Fernández opted to let Monk to handle the ball, which then he hit a mid ranger jumper, instead of letting Fox to key the ball…..

As Jordi may notice Monk is more reliable in that situation (he can score by himself or pass to Sabonis)

scottymusprime
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January 15, 2024 6:57 am

I think we need an asinine trade thread.

Hobby916
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January 15, 2024 7:12 am
Reply to  scottymusprime

That would be great!

Sacto_J
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January 15, 2024 10:07 am
Reply to  scottymusprime

If only that helped get the asinine trade suggestions out of every other post.
Le Sigh…

Marty
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January 15, 2024 9:43 am

.

SIX_BCA6F1A3-4398-465C-B442-B95F246C5495
Sacto_J
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January 15, 2024 10:07 am
Reply to  Marty

Excellent point, coach.

ajonez81
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January 15, 2024 11:06 am

Tough loss but good effort, the West got a lot better and the Kings didn’t by much. Team looks like a 5-8 seed. It’s really just the same Big 4 we had last year: Monk, Fox, Domas, and Keeg. Not much on this team besides that, need to add 2 or 3 more impact players that can be consistently good at their role.

Sacto_J
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January 15, 2024 12:49 pm

Tough loss. If there’s such a thing as moral victories there must be such a thing as a demoralizing loss. Let’s hope this isn’t one of them, this team doesn’t need any confidence setbacks.
If we’re looking for lessons, free throws and defensive effort / execution were the difference makers, just like in the playoffs. Gotta dial those in still.
On a positive note, Huerter showed showed out and really helped keep us in a game where we needed some scoring punch. Some consistency with that would make this team an absolute nightmare for defenses. Also, Len made another solid impact off the bench and the team showed some resiliency against a very tough opponent.

NowLoveThemOnceAgain
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January 15, 2024 2:46 pm

Cannot believe Monk missed 2 straight at clutch time. It marred a brilliant game for him.

Raiderfusion
January 15, 2024 5:39 pm

Hell, he missed 4 fts, now that’s unbelievable!

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