Marvin Bagley III on his first Kings Media Day
The Kings fell to .500 after suffering a 120-105 loss to the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday at Scotiabank Arena. Here are three takeaways from the game:
Bagley gets his first start
With the Kings resting three regular starters, it opened up the opportunity for other players to contribute.
Rookie big man Marvin Bagley III made his first NBA start in place of Nemanja Bjelica. Bagley started the scoring with a hook shot and showed energy throughout the game.
Bagley played 37 minutes and finished with a career-high 22 points to lead the team and had 11 rebounds for his sixth double-double. He also had two blocks and a steal.
Two other players who aren’t usually in the game at tipoff finished with nice stat lines.
Bogdan Bogdanovic made his eighth start of the season and flirted with a triple-double. The second-year guard had 16 points, eight rebounds, nine assists and three steals in 36 minutes.
Starting at point guard was Yogi Ferrell. It was just the third time his number was called to begin a game, and he finished with 10 points, seven rebounds and six assists.
The starts by Bogdanovic and Ferrell left coach Dave Joerger’s bench thinner than usual. The second unit scored 32 points, led by 11 from rookie center Harry Giles III.
Giving them a breather
Three of the Kings’ starters have struggled in January. With this game coming as the second of a back-to-back, Joerger decided to rest guard De’Aaron Fox and forwards Iman Shumpert and Bjelica.
Fox is averaging 14.8 points this month on 42 percent shooting from the field. That’s down from his season numbers of 17.4 points and 46.2 percent shooting.
Shumpert has also seen a dip in production in January, most notably his shooting percentage. The veteran is shooting 27 percent this month, well below his 38.3 percent clip this season.
The month has been really hard on Bjelica. He averaged 15.1 points while hitting a blistering 58.2 percent overall, including 54.5 percent from 3-point range in October. This month: 6.7 points on 38.9 percent from the field and 27.3 on 3s.
Giving the players the night off means they’ll have four full days of rest before the Kings take on the Grizzlies on Friday in Memphis.
Upcoming schedule for the Kings
▪ Jan. 25 at Memphis Grizzlies – The Kings are 2-1 against the Grizzlies, including a 102-99 victory Dec. 21 at Golden 1 Center in which Sacramento overcame a 19-point deficit.
▪ Jan. 27 at Los Angeles Clippers – The Kings are 0-2 against the Clippers. The first contest was Sacramento’s only game televised on TNT this season. In the second, the Clippers led big until the Kings’ reserves staged a 27-3 run in the fourth quarter but eventually fell short.
▪ Jan. 30 vs. Atlanta Hawks – The Kings will tip off their season-long six-game home stand against a team they beat by 31 for their largest win this season. De’Aaron Fox recorded his first NBA triple-double in a 146-115 victory Nov. 1 in Atlanta.