Crown Jewels: Revisiting the dominant win over the Lakers in the 2002 Western Conference Finals

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Precisely 19 years in the past immediately, the Sacramento Kings went on the highway to tackle the Los Angeles Lakers in Sport 3 of the 2002 Western Convention Finals.

Regardless of being with out All-Star ahead Peja Stojakovic for the fourth-straight sport, the Kings gained Sport 2 at residence in entrance of a raucous residence crowd at Arco Area, tying the sequence at 1-1.

It wasn’t going to be a straightforward job. The Lakers had solely misplaced as soon as at residence through the first two rounds, and with Kings’ head coach Rick Adelman going with a shortened bench, Sacramento would have its work lower out.

The sport was shut via the primary six minutes, with the Kings holding a 13-11 lead with 5:40 left within the opening quarter, however it was all Sacramento after that. Ahead Hedo Turkoglu, who was beginning instead of Stojakovic, and Chris Webber mixed for 13 factors and helped the Kings go on a 19-4 run to shut out the quarter and take a 32-15 lead.

Sacramento would use its protection to additional its leads early within the second quarter. The Kings had been doubling Lakers’ huge man Shaquille O’Neal laborious, holding the previous league MVP to only two factors over the primary 16 minutes of the sport. The Kings had been up 38-17 with 8:30 to go when O’Neal would get up.

Shaq scored 13 factors over the remainder of the quarter, slicing Sacramento’s result in 52-40 on the half, however that was shut as L.A. would get the remainder of the best way.

The Kings ramped up their protection popping out of the break, holding the Lakers scoreless for the primary 4:18 of the third, and took a 60-40 lead. Webber, Turkoglu and Doug Christie took over on the offensive finish, combining for 12 factors over the ultimate 7:21, serving to Sacramento put issues out of attain with a 75-52 lead after three.

The Lakers would attempt to get again within the sport within the fourth however could not lower the deficit to under 12 factors. Anytime it regarded like L.A. was on the verge of creating it shut, Webber or level guard Mike Bibby got here up with a clutch basket to maintain the Lakers at bay.

Webber led the best way with 26 factors and 9 rebounds, whereas Bibby chipped in with 24 as Sacramento went on to a 103-90 win to take a 2-1 sequence lead.

After the sport, Webber spoke with the Related Press:

“It’s a giant night time for our followers, as a result of we really feel like we’re a great highway group,’’ Webber mentioned. “We play so properly at residence, however generally once you get on the highway and also you launch that strain, it will probably assist you a large number.’’

Total, it was a dominant Sport 3 efficiency by the Kings. They led for all however 16 seconds and had a .532 eFG%, per basketball reference.

What made this win extra spectacular was that Adelman solely used seven gamers all through the sport. A type of gamers, Scot Pollard, was solely on the courtroom for six:36. Webber, Bibby and Christie every performed greater than 43 minutes, regardless of Sacramento being up by as many as 26 within the remaining quarter.

You may watch the Kings highlights from the sport under. Not the very best quality, however you’ll be capable to see simply how properly Sacramento performed:


On to some hyperlinks:

Regardless of being out of the postseason image, basic supervisor Monte McNair mentioned Luke Walton could be again as head coach. James Ham of NBC California grades Walton’s efficiency final season.

Sacramento missed the playoffs for the fifteenth consecutive season, however there may be nonetheless some Kings taste within the postseason. Anthony Cardenas goes over 10 former Sacramento gamers which are serving to their respective groups win a title. (Fansided)

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