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MFFL
04-27-2002, 12:26 AM
Here's the link (http://www.msnbc.com/news/744333.asp)

Kings face questions of toughness
Sacramento needs to ‘win ugly’ at Delta Center against Jazz
ASSOCIATED PRESS

SACRAMENTO, Calif., April 26 — Even as the Sacramento Kings rolled to the NBA’s best regular-season record, there was a nagging question in Rick Adelman’s mind. Was his stylish team tough enough to win ugly in the playoffs? The coach will get his answer in Salt Lake City, where the top-seeded Kings must get at least one victory to avoid a shocking first-round upset at the hands of the veteran Utah Jazz.

“THAT’S THE SCARY part of playing a five-game series when you slip up at home,” Adelman said. “You have to win one on the road, and we’re going to a tough place where not too many teams have ever done that.”

Game 3 is Saturday at the Delta Center, where a vocal, cowbell-ringing crowd will encourage Karl Malone and John Stockton to add another chapter to their years of playoff success. Sure, the Kings are more talented and more successful, but as long as they’re playing Utah’s hard-nosed, slowdown game, they’re not the same.

“I know that if we can’t get back to our style of play and stop allowing the other team to dictate what happens in the game, we’re going to be in trouble,” said Adelman, who abandoned his usual placid rhetoric this week to criticize his team in the style of Utah coach Jerry Sloan.

“We worked on our offense in practice. We want to get back to what we do well. We want to get an idea what we can do to be successful.”

So far, the Kings haven’t been able to do much of the running, passing and shooting that gave them their first Pacific Division title. The Jazz evened the series by bullying the Kings during a tough, graceless Game 2 victory on Tuesday night.

Utah short-circuited Sacramento’s fast break, outhustled the Kings to almost every loose ball and controlled the boards — all while making just enough shots to win. With no pressure on the Jazz, they’ve responded with some of their best basketball at the tail end of Sloan’s most frustrating season in Utah.

“We’ve had some guys making an effort and competing, and that’s all you can ask,” Sloan said. “I didn’t see any reason we couldn’t be successful in this series if we gave it a good effort.”

Actually, there were plenty of reasons, starting with Utah’s 1,353 turnovers and Sacramento’s average of 104.6 points per game during the regular season.

Those statistics defined the difference between the Kings, who regularly won shootouts with their opponents, and the Jazz, who led the league in turnovers for most of the season despite the presence of Stockton, the NBA’s career assists leader.

But those numbers haven’t mattered in the series, where Malone and Jarron Collins have set Utah’s physical tone. A handful of shoving matches broke out in each of the first two games, and Malone earned a flagrant foul for clobbering Doug Christie on a layup attempt in Game 2.

On the surface, the Kings are the very definition of a finesse team, from their jump-shooting offense to Chris Webber, the power forward who prefers to shoot 18-foot jumpers.

But prolonged spells of gritty defense, mostly on the road, led Adelman to believe his team had enough moxie to mix it up with the Jazz or Shaquille O’Neal’s Lakers.

“I think we’re tough enough to win, but I think we’re frustrated that we haven’t showed it yet,” Webber said. “They play a real tough, veteran game, and we know we have to get down and dirty and get in the trenches to get out of this series.”

While Webber and his teammates stewed in Sacramento, upbraiding themselves daily in the media for their failings in the first two games, the Jazz practiced with quiet confidence. Malone spent Thursday afternoon attending Little League practice with his son, Karl Jr., and rejecting ticket requests from friends and family.

“When you’re at home, you’ve got to give the crowd something to yell for,” Malone said. “But don’t get so excited that you forget to play.”

MavsFanFinley
04-27-2002, 01:18 AM
It's tough to swallow, but Go Jazz!

DTL
04-27-2002, 01:29 AM
I've made up my mind. Can't stand the Sacto whining weenies anymore. Go Jazz!

MavsFanFinley
04-27-2002, 01:38 AM
What's funny is that was a BIG slap in the face for the Kings, imo. I know the post-season is different but to beat a team by an average of 20+ points in 4 meetings, win a narrow first game and lose like they did in game 2 hopefully popped the Kings balloon.

I hope the Kings fall victim to all the calls the Jazz seem to get in Utah.

DTL
04-27-2002, 12:19 PM
Will Divac get tossed after two T's for whining at the Delta Center?

DTL
04-27-2002, 02:31 PM
Darn. Can't the Jazz do anything right without Stockton?

MavsFanFinley
04-27-2002, 02:41 PM
Not the kind of start I was hoping for from the Jazz.

Let's hope they turn things around.

DTL
04-27-2002, 03:07 PM
Halftime, Jazz down only 1!!

Go Stockton! Go Rusty LaRue! Go...Malone! i/expressions/face-icon-small-blush.gif

Rhylan
04-27-2002, 03:30 PM
I understand my basic duty to hate Utah, but Stockton and Malone are SO old now that you have to root for them. It's like Jimmy Connors' comeback in '91. You just HAVE to. i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif

It's a shame that whoever wins this series will get stomped by Dallas anyway. i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif

DTL
04-27-2002, 03:32 PM
Two quick fouls on Webber in the third. I think Utah's going to get their 2-1 lead!

DTL
04-27-2002, 03:33 PM
Shoot. Stockton got whistled for his fourth, too, right after he finally tied the game for Jazz.

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:02 PM
Can't anyone on the Utah team make a shot?

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:09 PM
John Stockton. What I'm most impressed with is how he's kept that full flock of hair at the advanced age of forty. I want to know which brand of shampoo he uses.

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:19 PM
Jazz outrebounded 50-27, but has more steals (11) than turnovers (10) and now has a 2-pt lead with 3:20 to go.

Hoopsmeister
04-27-2002, 04:24 PM
Jazz up by 1 with Malone on the free throw line and 2 minutes left.

19 turnovers by the Kings. Its amazing how the Kings have just let the Jazz take control of every game.

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:25 PM
If John Stockton still wants to play after next year, should the Mavs get him as our third-string PG? (AJ can be an assistant coach.)

Murphy3
04-27-2002, 04:26 PM
sacramento looks horrible

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:26 PM
<< Its amazing how the Kings have just let the Jazz take control of every game. >>



Is Peja still hurt? He's got quite a few open-look shots, but they were just not falling.

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:28 PM
Stockton-to-Malone. Wow.

Murphy3
04-27-2002, 04:28 PM
i can't ever remember having this feeling about a game other than the mavs..
feels like it's the mavs and lakers going down the wire... such an intense feeling

Murphy3
04-27-2002, 04:30 PM
a push off?

hmm

Murphy3
04-27-2002, 04:32 PM
why did stockton foul peja?
a horrible, horrible move..

i can't believe some of the decisions by stockton and some of the missed shots by malone down the stretch..

i can't believe the choke job by both teams

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:33 PM
Grrrrrrh. Kings up 3 with 25.3 left....

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:34 PM
<< i can't believe the choke job by both teams >>



I'd at least give Malone and Stockton the age excuse. The Kings? They're just a bunch of overrated chokers.

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:36 PM
Well, Russell choked on an easy layup bigtime....

Hoopsmeister
04-27-2002, 04:38 PM
Christie is an 85% ft shooter but went 1-1 on two trips to the line in a row. That is choking.

Murphy3
04-27-2002, 04:39 PM
that was almost as big of a choke job as stockton making the mental mistake of fouling peja

and christie misses the free throw to put it away..amazing.

if sacramento or utah plays like this..it'll be over against the mavs in 4-5 games next series

Murphy3
04-27-2002, 04:40 PM
and the best shot you can get is with larue taking the shot?
amazing..

DTL
04-27-2002, 04:42 PM
Utah just can't do anything right with Stockton out.

Hopefully the Jazz can come back and make it to game 5.

Murphy3
04-27-2002, 04:44 PM
the only reason stockton was out was because of his own mental lapse.. althought he got jabbed a bit on his 5th foul call where he drew the charge when the kings player (bibby?) pushed off...

however, it was a poor, poor decision on his last foul

Drbio
04-27-2002, 06:56 PM
stupid Jazz....

Bayliss
04-27-2002, 08:02 PM
I saw part of the first half and then went to a park and shot some hoops.

Webber had 15 points at the half.... how did he end up with only 18?

Perhaps he believes that he's in golf? The lower the score... the better the player. i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif

DTL
04-29-2002, 02:32 PM
Go Jazz!

Dooby
04-29-2002, 05:19 PM
Go Ja...

Go Jazs...

Go Jaspthss...

It is just too hard. I can't do it.

Hoopsmeister
04-29-2002, 06:29 PM
<< Go Ja...

Go Jazs...

Go Jaspthss...

It is just too hard. I can't do it. >>



And I won't do it. I want the Kings because I really want Dirk to show up Webber on the national stage. This morning, Minnesota's papers were full of reports talking about how Dirk was the best 7-footer in the series. I want the same thing (adjusted for Webber's height) coming out of California.

I realize that a Sacramento series won't be a cakewalk. But I think the Mavs are more talented and I know they have more heart and I think they will take a series with the Kings. And I want the world to see what we in Dallas know.

If we play Utah, it will also be a tough series (tougher than the Kings in a lot of ways) but whatever the Mavs accomplish will be dismissed because of the Jazz's age, just as some people dismiss our sweep of Minnesota since Minnesota always gets beaten in the first round.

DTL
04-29-2002, 06:30 PM
Go Jazz!

Dooby - it does get easier with practice i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif

DTL
04-29-2002, 06:31 PM
Hoops - I want the Kings in the second round, but I'd also like to get them after they've played a 5-game 1st round. So...

Go Jazz!

Hoopsmeister
04-29-2002, 06:51 PM
<< Hoops - I want the Kings in the second round, but I'd also like to get them after they've played a 5-game 1st round. So... >>



Nah. I don't want them or the media to have any excuses after the Mavs crush Tin Man and the Rabbits.

MavKikiNYC
04-29-2002, 09:08 PM
Oh great. John Thompson is reading his own copy. This is gonna be a super-well-broadcast game.

DTL
04-29-2002, 09:13 PM
Tin Man and the Rabbits?

I see the Tin Shoes and the choking, but &quot;rabbits&quot;?

Hoopsmeister
04-29-2002, 09:22 PM
Tin Man has no heart.

Rabbits--that's what Peja has looked like for most of this series. A rabbit caught in the headlights. They run and jump but they are not exactly ferocious.

DTL
04-29-2002, 09:24 PM
At least Bibby is cold tonight....

Hoopsmeister
04-29-2002, 09:25 PM
Wow. The Jazz are getting a job from the refs.

Somebody must have reminded the refs that the NBA office would like to see a Sacramento-Dallas game.

Drbio
04-29-2002, 09:26 PM
Go Jazz Go!!!!!

DTL
04-29-2002, 09:35 PM
Ostertag my man! i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif

DTL
04-29-2002, 09:37 PM
Straw poll: Would you take Ostertag or Bradley if they were the only centers left (say, in a fantasy league)?

madape
04-29-2002, 09:48 PM
stupid question

Hales233
04-29-2002, 09:50 PM
i'd take olden polynice because he could arrest shaq for being so stupid.

DTL
04-29-2002, 10:29 PM
Holy crap. The game is tied!!!

Drbio
04-29-2002, 10:31 PM
comeback!

Drbio
04-29-2002, 10:31 PM
Utah takes the LEAD!!!!!!!!!

Drbio
04-29-2002, 10:39 PM
Not one single Jazz player has double figs in points and we are into the third period....

makes me love Dirk, Fin, Nash, et al....

MavsFanFinley
04-29-2002, 10:43 PM
Everytime the Jazz get close, the Kings just embarass them with some great passing.

DTL
04-29-2002, 10:54 PM
Ostertag puts it back in! My man!

DTL
04-29-2002, 10:54 PM
<< Not one single Jazz player has double figs in points and we are into the third period....

makes me love Dirk, Fin, Nash, et al.... >>



Makes me love Nellie more, Doc i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif

DTL
04-29-2002, 10:55 PM
Peja is 8-11. Bad sign. Has he recovered from his injury and slump? Darn.

Drbio
04-29-2002, 10:58 PM
67-62 Kings after 3.

MavsFanFinley
04-29-2002, 11:06 PM
I think the Kings are just toying with the Jazz.

It doesn't matter how many times the Jazz get within reach or how well Ostertag is playing...the Kings have an answer for it and go right back up.

Too bad we have to wait until Saturday to toy with the Kings. i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif

MFFL
04-29-2002, 11:08 PM
Very interesting game. The Kings should have put this game away a long time ago. The Jazz are trying their best to stay in the game but Malone is KILLING them with his poor play.

Bayliss
04-29-2002, 11:10 PM
Can we trade Bradley for Kirilenko?

The guy is going to be a defensive stud in a couple of years....

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:10 PM
Kirilenko is good. I'll have to remember to draft him for my fantasy team next season...

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:11 PM
And why can't Ostertag play like this all year long? Does he think he's Shaq the Champ and will only turn it on in the playoffs?

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:14 PM
Jazz lost on the boards 55-29 last game. This time they're leading 39-27 so far.

Drbio
04-29-2002, 11:14 PM
Jazz making it interesting....

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:14 PM
Two point game!

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:15 PM
Ostertag rebounds again!

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:15 PM
Malone ties it!

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:16 PM
Battle of the centers: Divac vs Ostertag.....the game of basketball has really deteriorated....

Bayliss
04-29-2002, 11:21 PM
Did I hear Ainge right?

Did he just say the Peja reminds him of Dirk?

Should we be insulted? I think we should.

Bayliss
04-29-2002, 11:23 PM
Padgett made a bonehead play in the first game, but I kind of like him.

Drbio
04-29-2002, 11:23 PM
Peja is no Dirk.....Ainge is clearly mistaken....Dirk will show him that soon.

MavsFanFinley
04-29-2002, 11:23 PM
OMG, did you see that 3 Divac just made?

Drbio
04-29-2002, 11:24 PM
damn Divac....

Bayliss
04-29-2002, 11:24 PM
You think Webber's ability to choke has rubbed off on Malone?

Malone... swallow, it's not that hard.

MavsFanFinley
04-29-2002, 11:26 PM
Malone... swallow, it's not that hard.

I know Im tired when I start reading too much into a comment like this..so, Im not even going to touch it.

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:26 PM
<< Peja is no Dirk.....Ainge is clearly mistaken....Dirk will show him that soon. >>



Peja's more like a better Szczerbiak.

Drbio
04-29-2002, 11:26 PM
*blushes*

Bayliss
04-29-2002, 11:27 PM
Gawd... it's painful to watch Webber and Malone choking....

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:27 PM
MFF - !!!

MavsFanFinley
04-29-2002, 11:27 PM
Geez, that was a HUGE 3 by Stockton only for the Jazz to blow it by giving Bibby that open shot.

DTL
04-29-2002, 11:28 PM
Last shot of the Stockton franchise?

Bayliss
04-29-2002, 11:29 PM
Have the Kings been exposed?

If the Kings play #4 at the power forward spot... they will always be exposed...

Drbio
04-29-2002, 11:31 PM
Ugh....stupid Jazz. I sure wish they could have forced one more game.

Drbio
04-29-2002, 11:32 PM
if they haven't been exposed, they will be next week. i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif

djb
04-29-2002, 11:35 PM
Sacramento got lucky tonight with that late three by Divac. Oh well. Who likes the Jazz anyway?

Drbio
04-29-2002, 11:36 PM
hate them...but they would be easier to beat probably...anyway...Bring on the Kings!

madape
04-30-2002, 12:20 AM
DTL - I've got to disagree with your Peja/Wally statement. I know this may not be a popular opinion, but Wally is a much better player. His offensive game is much more well rounded. He can shoot almost as well as Peja, plus he can drive and move without the ball better. Wally has better court awareness and despite his reputation, he can distribute the ball a little... at least better than Peja.

Defensively, there is no comparison. Peja is terrible. Wally will actually get in your face, get his hands on the ball, and go after loose balls. Peja is just a worthless stump on D.

That being said, Peja is a better shooter, but only slightly, and he has a couple of inches on wally. Don't get me wrong, Peja is good if you understand what he is: a one dimensional three point hurler with decent hight. But Wally knows how to play basketball, and he's just better all around player.

Hoopsmeister
04-30-2002, 12:56 AM
<< Did he just say the Peja reminds him of Dirk? >>



I missed that one. I tuned Ainge out about the 5th time he repeated that Peja was the 'best European player'--referrring, I presume, to Peja's MVP at the European championships over the summer.