The Kings ended what could be their last season in Sacramento with a loss to the Clippers.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Is this the end?
The chatter around Sleep Train Pavilion centered on that question Wednesday night. With NBA owners debating whether to approve the franchise’s sale and relocation to Seattle, the ever-faithful fans of the Sacramento Kings pushed that uncertainty aside and did what they have done for parts of four decades during the regular-season finale against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Maybe for the last time.
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Hope rang out in those trademark cowbells. Optimism showed through purple-painted faces and in the jerseys of players past and present worn throughout the sellout crowd that packed the 17,317-seat arena.
The Kings lost to the visiting Clippers, 112-108. DeMarcus Cousins had a season-high 36 points and a career-best 22 rebounds, while ex-Husky Isaiah Thomas added 15 points, but the Kings (28-54) ended another disappointing season.
“The Kings are like our stepchild,” said fan Kenneth Williams, a Sacramento native. “It’s like family.”
This season’s finale felt more like a pep rally.
“It’s still nervousness, but it’s a lot more confidence this time,” fan Stacey Petit-Williams said. “Our city, our mayor, our fans, we’ve been here before and won.”
CLIPPERS 112, KINGS 108
Percentages: FG .500, FT .667. Three-point goals: 12-24, .500 (Crawford 6-8, Butler 3-4, Billups 3-6, Bledsoe 0-1, Barnes 0-2, Paul 0-3). Team rebounds: 9. Team turnovers: 13 (11 PTS). Blocked shots: 3 (Jordan 2, Odom). Turnovers: 13 (Griffin 4, Billups 3, Bledsoe 3, Butler, Crawford, Hollins). Steals: 5 (Crawford 2, Butler, Odom, Paul). Technical fouls: Bledsoe, 9:10 second; Hollins, 0:07.3 fourth.
Percentages: FG .449, FT .760. Three-point goals: 9-26, .346 (Thornton 5-12, Thomas 3-7, Patterson 1-1, Fredette 0-1, Salmons 0-2, Outlaw 0-3). Team rebounds: 8. Team turnovers: 11 (16 PTS). Blocked shots: 4 (Cousins 3, Salmons). Turnovers: 11 (Cousins 3, Thomas 3, Outlaw 2, Salmons 2, Fredette). Steals: 5 (Thomas 2, Thompson 2, Thornton). Technical fouls: Cousins, 0:07.3 fourth.
|L.A. Clippers||27||27||24||34 — 112|
|Sacramento||26||20||24||38 — 108|
Attendance: 17,317 (17,317). Time: 2:22. Officials: Marc Davis, Bennie Adams, Derek Richardson.