By: Damon Sloan
The San Diego Kings are on the push to the playoffs and are playing in peak form after a 142-106 victory over the Tucson Buckets last Sunday. The Kings had 7 players score in double figures, led by James Hancock who pushed his double-double streak to 6 with 21 points and 13 rebounds.
The 1st quarter was played tightly by the Buckets who got 37 points from their star guard Domineik Banks. He scored 13 1st quarter points to keep the Buckets competitive but the Kings began to pick up the pressure in the 2nd quarter with their full-court press and as usual the Kings were able to overwhelm the Buckets with their speed and transition finishing. The Kings took a commanding 54-35 lead late in the 2nd and did not look back.
“We just played complete game today,” coach Davion Famber said after Sunday’s win. “We able to mix in different lineups and allow different guys to run with different squads to build chemistry. I couldn’t be prouder of our performance today.”
The Kings were able to score 100 points in the 3rd and controlled the rebounding battle yet again, grabbing 60 rebounds total for the contest. They also distributed the ball nicely, getting 28 assists from their 142 points.
A big reason for that was Ray Williams, whose court vision was superb throughout the entire game. He dropped 17 assists including several spectacular alley-oop passes to Julian Sampah and Davion Cole-Johnson, who made his Kings debut tonight with 19 points, 7 rebounds and 3 assists. DCJ made several highlights in his Kings debut including an alley-oop slam from an out of bounds pass from Spencer Mattox in the 3rd.
Julian Sampah stepped up offensively with 18 points and 7 rebounds off the bench and was able to provide quality low post scoring with Hancock resting.
Yuri Kozhanov stepped into the starting lineup and delivered offensively scoring 14 points, 9 of them in the 1st quarter; all 3-point shots
The Kings were in the control throughout the entire game which allowed the Kings to play their owner Abraham Muheize in the contest. Muheize, who starred at El Cajon High School in Football and Basketball was able to knock down a 3 late in the 3rd and finished a transition layup late in the game to add even more excitement to the Kings 6 game winning streak!
With the playoffs near, the Kings are looking to solidify themselves as one of the top teams in the Far West Division of the ABA. They are on a 6-game winning streak dating back to December 14th when they beat the Las Vegas Royals. They go on the road next week as they head up to Northern California for rematch against Stockton’s Team Trouble whom the Kings beat at home 115-92 on January 4th. They will play again the next day against the San Francisco City Cats, who are one of the best teams in the ABA. The Kings will finish out the year at home against the Las Vegas Royals on February 22nd.
Kings win 6 straight: 142-106 win over Buckets
By: Damon Sloan