Forward Harrison Barnes indicated that the Kings fear no one, as they lead their series vs. the Warriors by a 2-0 count.
“The whole time this season when we talked about the playoffs, we didn’t want to be seen as a team that is just happy to be here,” he said, via Marc J. Spears of Andscape/ESPN. “Obviously, this is a special moment for the fan base and organization to be in the playoffs. But at the same time, we feel like we are better than everybody.”
Barnes added the Kings need to “continue to do the little things” vs. the Warriors to keep the good vibes alive.
“Executing. When you play a team five, six, seven times, you can relax and let your guard down,” he said, via Spears. “You can think, ‘Oh, this is just another game.’ But the same energy we had the first quarter of Game 1 when everyone is going crazy, you still need that in Game 3 and down the stretch in Game 4, 5 and 6.”
- In case you missed it, coach Mike Brown was officially named NBA Coach of the Year. You can check out the full post here.
Center Nikola Jokic said guard Jamal Murray may be playing better than at any time in his career. Murray erupted for 40 points in Wednesday’s win over the Timberwolves, giving the Nuggets a 2-0 series lead.
“I think he’s playing now better than in the bubble. Yes, he scored a lot more points in the bubble, or whatever, but I think his energy is much better,” Jokic said, via Harrison Wind of DNVR Sports. “His leadership, his — not focus — just like being into the game, it’s at a much higher level.”
- Small forward Michael Porter Jr. downplayed his 8-0 run to start the fourth quarter. “The whole playoffs, stats don’t matter, shooting percentages don’t matter, it’s next play mentality,” he said, via Wind.
- Porter added that the playoffs have been a case of so far, so good, for the West’s top seed. “I’m here in the playoffs. This is a dream come true. I’m starting for the No. 1 team in the West and playing a lot of minutes,” he said. “And we’re up two games in the playoffs. This is all you can ask for.”
- Star big man Anthony Davis struggled to 4-of-14 shooting but said he intends to move past it. Obviously, I can be better,” Davis said, via Jovan Buha of The Athletic. “Can’t have a night like I had tonight and expect us to win.”
- Guard D’Angelo Russell also struggled, particularly when it came to shooting the basketball. “I was just missing shots,” Russell said, via Buha. “I liked the shots I was getting. Honestly. Just missing them.”
- Russell took exception when he asked what he could do as a point guard to help make Davis’ life easier. “I’m a basketball player,” he said, via Buha. “You can’t keep saying ‘point guard.’ I’m a basketball player.”
- I wrote more about the Lakers’ Game 2 loss and what LeBron James had to say right here.