Kings notes: Three starters missing because of injuries

Published: Tuesday, Apr. 8, 2014 - 11:34 pm
Last Modified: Wednesday, Apr. 9, 2014 - 7:45 am

If there is a King who wants playing time, there should be plenty available tonight in Portland.

The Kings were down three starters against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday night at Sleep Train Arena.

Point guard Isaiah Thomas missed his eighth consecutive game because of a right quadriceps contusion, forward Rudy Gay sat out because of a lower back strain, and forward Reggie Evans was sidelined because of a sore lower back.

The statuses of Gay and Evans for the Portland game will be determined today. Coach Michael Malone said Gay had been playing through back pain for a couple of games.

The Kings had only nine players in uniform Tuesday.

“A lot of guys during the season do not get the minutes they feel they deserve,” Malone said. “... I’m anxious to see how our guys take advantage of those opportunities that are given to them.”

Rookie Ray McCallum again filled in for Thomas, Jason Thompson started for Evans, and Travis Outlaw started for Gay. It was the Kings’ 19th different starting lineup this season.

To make up for the players lost to injury, the Kings recalled forward-center Willie Reed from the Reno Bighorns of the NBA Development League. The Kings signed Reed on March 28 and immediately assigned him to Reno, where he averaged 13.6 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.4 blocks in five games as a reserve.

Reed was not on the bench Tuesday. He was en route from Reno, where the Bighorns are preparing to host Fort Wayne on Friday in the opener of a best-of-three playoff series.

Ollie excitement – The Thunder might have been the NBA team most excited about Connecticut winning the NCAA men’s championship Monday.

Huskies coach Kevin Ollie played for 12 NBA teams (including seven games with the Kings during the 1998-99 season) and finished his career with Oklahoma City in 2010.

“I was thrilled beyond belief,” Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. “I love his spirit. I love his integrity, his character. He’s earned that opportunity. He fought his way as a player to get this position, and he’s done the same thing as a coach. He’s worked his way up.

“He’s just a great guy. He was a great teammate here. He was coachable. I loved having him around.”

Halfcourt winner – Sometimes one shot is all you need.

Kings fan DeShon Benton won a car by hitting a halfcourt shot during a second-quarter timeout.


Follow The Bee’s Jason Jones on Twitter @mr_jasonjones and read more about the team at www.sacbee.com/kings.

Read more articles by Jason Jones



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