The Sacramento Kings won the NBA summer league title after defeating the Boston Celtics, 116-92.
The nba summer league is a basketball tournament that takes place in the summer. This year, the Sacramento Kings routed Boston Celtics to claim the NBA summer league title.
LAS VEGAS — With just over two minutes remaining in the third quarter of the NBA summer league championship game, Louis King smashed home a two-handed dunk, let out a loud scream, and flexed with authority.
King dominated for Sacramento, scoring 21 points in a 100-67 win against the Boston Celtics on Tuesday night in front of a small, masked audience that barely filled the Thomas & Mack Center’s lower bowl, an unusual sight for a championship game that had packed the stadium in previous years prior to the epidemic.
Sacramento has not won a summer league championship since 2014.
“It started with our transition, and it came down to our defense and transition points,” said King, who signed with the Detroit Pistons after going undrafted out of Oregon in 2019. “I believe that what we’re doing now, over the summer, and in the offseason will simply transfer into our regular-season squad.”
“We’ve got fresh faces and new people, and all we have to do now is trust one other.”
Davion Mitchell, a defensive stopper who was selected ninth overall in last month’s NBA draft, was eager to show the Sacramento Kings didn’t make a mistake by adding him to a team that already included Tyrese Haliburton and De’Aaron Fox.
It’s not as if the Kings’ offense, which ranked 11th in the league with 113.7 points per game last season, needed a lift. Instead, the Kings are counting on the guard’s defensive grit to improve a sluggish defense that has allowed 117.4 points per game, the third-worst in the NBA.
“We liked what we saw, and that’s why we selected him,” Luke Walton, the Kings’ head coach, said. “We’re still trying to bring in a certain player, and the front office has done an excellent job. And when you see Davion play and see him win a national championship, you get a sense of his background, how he competes, leads, and works, which is why we gave him a top-10 selection.”
While the Kings had further contributions from Jahmi’us Ramsey (16 points), Matt Coleman III (14) and Ade Murkey (10 points), Mitchell contributed nine points while also shutting down Boston’s Payton Pritchard.
For Boston, Carsen Edwards scored 15 points and Aaron Nesmith had 12. Pritchard was held to to six points on 3-of-9 shooting from the field.
“I’ve always played with a chip on my shoulder,” Mitchell said, “and I’ve always felt like the underdog, particularly going to Sacramento and hearing that they’re not a very strong defensive team.” “That really fired me on, like I really want to alter the narrative; I want to be a defensive squad, because defense wins championships, so yes, I wanted to demonstrate that going into summer league, and I believe I did a pretty good job of it.”
After the Celtics established a 14-4 lead in the first quarter because to Nesmith’s outstanding performance, the Kings responded with a 20-6 run to take a four-point lead after one quarter, thanks to 10 points from King.
The Kings, who led Boston 24-4 in fast-break points, pushed away in the third quarter, outscoring the Celtics 26-13 to take a 70-49 advantage into the final ten minutes.
Bobby Jackson, the Kings’ coach, stated, “I didn’t know what to anticipate out of this game.” “Looking at them on video, they play quickly and shoot a lot of threes, so I knew it was going to be a great game. I constantly told the players in my meetings that they haven’t seen a defense like ours, and that if we buy into defending and have each other’s backs, the ball will fall. On the defending side of the ball, it was simply a valiant effort.”
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