This post is much more about an appreciation for D'Angelo Russell's performance than it is a gambling post. That said, if you had the Sacramento Kings -3.5, you might want to sit the next couple plays out. That said x2, if you're betting NBA hoop while the first four NCAA Tournament games are there for the taking, you need to be better. I for one went 2-0 on the Belmont vs. Temple game, and I have now figured out sports betting. Sorry Vegas, it's a wrap for you.
Let's break this travesty down.
The Brooklyn Nets, losers of three straight on the road, did not appear like they'd snap out of it in the first quarter on the road in Sacramento. The Kings led 38-25 at the end of the first, and while the Nets were able to cut that deficit to as little as five in the second quarter, they still trailed by eight going into halftime. You're not even close to feeling good yet if you're a Kings backer, but you're also certainly not mad being up eight.
But in the third quarter, Brooklyn's tired legs caught up with them (fifth game in eight days). De'Aron Fox and Harrison Barnes went off, helping Sacramento take a 103-78 lead into the fourth quarter. Since the 1954-1955 season, only three teams have ever come back from 25 points down in the fourth quarter, and according to ESPN Stats & Information, the trailing teams have a record of 3-3,028 in those situations. I think you know where we're going with this.
The Nets did indeed storm back, becoming just the fourth team to ever overcome that fourth-quarter deficit, and daggering Kings 3.5 backers in the process. If you've had enough crushing gambling losses in your life, you never "feel good" until the game is over and you've cashed, but up by 21.5 on the spread is as good as you'll ever feel in game. Unfortunately, D'Angelo Russell happened, as he scored a career-high 44 points, 27 of which came in the fourth quarter. Check out the Steph Curry-like highlights:
Russell went 4-for-6 from the three-point line in the fourth and managed to also dish out four assists. His final stat line read 44 points, 12 assists, 4 steals, 4 rebounds (17-for-33 from the field and 6-for-15 from three). Incredible performance by the former Ohio State Buckeye who was drafted by the Lakers, traded by the Lakers, and is now blossoming into a perennial All-Star. And he's only 23. Yikes! At least the Lakers are going to the playo-- oh, wait, never mind.