Saturday's game required little expert analysis. It didn't need any of my analysis, either. The game was remarkably straight-forward:
-SAC's defensive plan was stupid and atrocious. Relying on the consistently lazy Bibby to chase Parker around screens is moronic, especially when it was readily apparent that the King big men were not aware of the plan. The help defense was non-existent. Parker had 25 points in 25 minutes on 15 FGA.
-Nazr and Rasho combined for 28 points and 15 rebounds. That's how bad Brad Miller played on the defensive end. Speaking of Nazr, he shot and made a 3 at the end of the game. The game had less than a minute to go but there was still about 10 seconds on the shot clock. They showed Bowen on the bench, talking to Timmeh!, and thanks to HDTV is was clear that he was saying "Pop is pissed."
So what will Ron Artest's absence mean to SAC? Well, given Ron's absolutely appalling offensive numbers since joining the Kings, one would think they would play much better on that end. Bibby is sure to shoot the ball at least 25 times, and he may face Bowen later in the game. Obviously the Kings will suffer defensively, but their choice of game plan will have much more impact than whether or not Ron's on the court. That decision lies with Rick Adelman and his apple-sized brain. Dead coach walking.
Game 2 will certainly be closer than its predecessor. The Spurs aren't going 11-17 from 3 again no matter how bad the defense and the majority of the 21 attempts taken by Ron will go to someone who better understands the definition of a good shot. But the only way the Kings win this game is if the Spurs lose it by missing a ton of free throws or having a slew of turnovers or just playing like total ass. This usually happens once a playoff series for the Spurs (last year it was game 1 against DEN, game 3 against SEA and game 4 against PHX), so nothing's out of the question.