The Kings and Nuggets met on Wednesday for their opener in a game few anticipated would produce the game of the night, but that’s exactly what happened in Denver.
The two teams traded the lead throughout the game, with Denver having to come back late to force overtime. In the overtime period, it was the Kings that needed some comeback magic as the two teams traded some wild blocks in the final minute-plus, culminating in a crazy buzzer-beater from Buddy Hield.
To start, Michael Porter Jr. made a potentially game-saving block on a corner three attempt to preserve a two-point advantage for Denver. After the Kings fouled, Will Barton got the ball on a blown assignment from Sacramento, running free to the rim for what looked like a game-sealing dunk. However, De’Aaron Fox came up with a sensational chasedown block that led to the wildest 30-second sequence of the young season.
What a win over the Nuggets. Hustle plays all over in OT. De'Aaron Fox with the block to save it and Buddy Hield with the tip-in to win it.
— Kevin O'Connor (@KevinOConnorNBA) December 24, 2020
Barton got his revenge with the block on Harrison Barnes after the Nikola Jokic turnover, but Buddy Hield followed the play and managed to get the tip-in to go just before the buzzer to give the Kings the win in the most improbable of fashion. It’s a huge win for Sacramento to start the season, as every game they can pick up on Western Conference playoff teams this season is important for their quest for a play-in spot (or, I guess, better).
For Denver, it was a dismal night for Jamal Murray who fouled out with just nine points, leaving Jokic a bit high and dry, as the big man piled up 29 points, 15 rebounds, and 14 assists. Sacramento had 20-point nights from Hield, Fox, and Barnes, as well as some timely buckets from rookie Tyrese Haliburton and others to help them on their way to the win.