Lakers–Kings rivalry: Wikis

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The Lakers-Kings rivalry describes the rivalry between two National Basketball Association teams, the Los Angeles Lakers and the Sacramento Kings. Their often tense meetings have inspired a rivalry between the teams as well as their respective fans. The rivalry is recent, having started in 2000, as both teams rose to prominence, but has taken on a number of different dimensions, such as Northern California vs. Southern California, state capital vs. largest city. Shaquille O'Neal infamously called the Sacramento Kings team the "Sacramento Queens" as an insult, and Lakers coach Phil Jackson called the city an "old cow town", to which Kings fans responded by clanging cow bells at home games against the Lakers and burning Laker jerseys before games. During the Lakers' 2002 championship parade, O'Neal said "Sacramento will never be the capital of California. Los Angeles is the new capital of California." The rivalry is less tense now since Shaquille O'Neal was traded to [[Miami Heat|Miami], Suns, then to Cleaveland as well as the Kings' decline in status as a major NBA power.

Contents

Origins

The rivalry dates back many years, even before either team was in their current city. In 1948, both the Lakers and Kings (then the Minneapolis Lakers and Rochester Royals) entered the NBA from the NBL, and preceded to finish at the top of their division for the next six years and win the next six NBA championships (five by the Lakers, one by the Royals). The rivalry again flared up in the 1960s, when the team had the NBA's two best backcourt players, Jerry West and Oscar Robertson.

2000 and 2001

In 2000 and 2001, the Lakers had to defeat the Kings en route to their NBA championships. The teams met in the playoffs in 2000, and despite the Lakers posting a 67-15 record, the 8th-seeded Kings were able to push the series to the limit. The series is memorable because prior to the games in ARCO Arena, Kings fans burned Laker jerseys. Despite the Kings improvement in record for the 2000-2001 season, the Lakers swept the Kings in four games in the 2001 playoffs.

2002 Western Conference Finals

On the court, the games between the two teams were definitely intense, culminating in the 2002 NBA Western Conference Finals, which featured Robert Horry's famous last-second three-pointer to beat the Kings in Game 4, a 1 point Kings win off a Bibby field goal with 8 seconds left in Game 5, a controversial Game 6 where the Lakers shot 27 fourth quarter free-throws resulting in a narrow Laker win, and finally a Game 7 with 19 lead changes and 16 ties producing a Lakers overtime win on the road. Many consider the series to be among the most fixed in NBA history.

Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy has contended that two of the three referees for Game 6 of the series called fouls in favor of the Lakers in order to send the series to a deciding seventh game. He claims these two officials believed it was in the best interest of the NBA to have the Western Conference Finals extend to seven games, and they officiated accordingly. NBA commissioner David Stern has denied the allegations.

2002 Pre-season Fight

In a game between the Kings and Lakers in the 2002 pre-season, a fight broke out on-court in the 1st quarter 2 minutes into the game between Kings guard Doug Christie and Lakers forward Rick Fox. After being separated, the two were ejected from the game, to their teams' respective locker rooms. Rick Fox jogged around to confront Doug Christie again as Christie was leaving the court. The two players fought at the locker room alley that involved both Kings and Lakers bench. The altercation resulted in Fox being suspended 6 games and Christie suspended 2 games. Also in a game between the two, on December 12, 2005, Mike Bibby and Kobe Bryant had a physical confrontation when Mike Bibby walked into Bryant as they went to their respective locker rooms. Bryant laughed and continued to walk. In a 2007 regular-season game a pushing fight escalated between Corliss Williamson and Ronny Turiaf; nothing serious happened but they were separated by their teammates.

Modern Culture

  • At a WWE Raw show at ARCO Arena in March 2003, The Rock got what is known in professional wrestling as "heat" when he sang a song about how much he hated Sacramento and how he couldn't wait to leave there. The last words of the song were "I'll be sure to come back when the Lakers beat the Kings in May." Ironically, the Kings never played the Lakers that year in the Playoffs as neither the Lakers or Kings advanced beyond the conference semi-finals.
  • In Chuck Klosterman's book Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs, he dedicates a page to the 2002 Western Conference Finals. In an ironic twist, the page, which covers the officiating of Game 6 of the series, comes prior to a chapter dedicated to the Lakers–Celtics rivalry. In June 2008, while the Celtics and Lakers were about to meet in the 2008 NBA Finals, Donaghy's allegations about that game being fixed took light in the media for several days.

Dormancy

The rivalry has taken on much less significance in recent years, largely because the Kings are no longer contenders and have been missing the playoffs. Personnel changes have also contributed to the decline of the rivalry. Shaquille O'Neal has since been traded to Miami, Phoenix, and Cleveland. Rick Fox has retired. Chris Webber is now retired, and Vlade Divac retired after briefly playing for the Lakers in the 2004-2005 season. The Lakers failed to make the playoffs the year following the O'Neal trade, though eventually rebounded to win the NBA Championship in 2009. Other key players in the rivalry for the Kings, such as Doug Christie, Raptors' Hedo Turkoglu, Hawks' Mike Bibby and Hornets' Peja Stojakovic are no longer with the team. In addition, Adelman now coaches the Houston Rockets.

Head to head

The results in brackets concern the play-off games.

Season at Los Angeles Lakers
Lakers-Kings
at Sacramento Kings
Kings-Lakers
Neutral
Lakers-Kings
Total
Lakers-Kings
1949-50 95-80, 85-73, 92-70 87-62, 83-77, 66-64
(76-78)*
3-3
(1-0)
1950-51 90-77, 72-82, 69-57, 69-58
(76-73, 66-70)
77-86, 75-67, 87-82, 90-79
(83-70, 80-75)
4-4
(1-3)
1951-52 70-65, 91-81, 77-75, 86-75, 96-90
(77-67, 82-80)
74-93, 96-85, 73-83, 94-92
(88-78, 78-83)
7-2
(3-1)
1952-53 95-77, 83-80, 107-87, 89-77 97-89, 83-71, 109-101, 87-72, 84-82 69-85 4-6
1953-54 76-70, 89-71, 105-77
(109-88, 89-76, 82-72)
98-91, 78-91, 78-87, 74-59
(74-73)
70-87, 84-85, 85-79, 61-70 6-5
(3-1)
1954-55 95-84, 100-102, 105-92, 93-84
(82-78, 119-110)
83-91, 88-102, 93-90, 95-96, 104-107
(94-92)
97-99, 112-110, 76-83 8-4
(2-1)
1955-56 96-104, 94-92, 109-121, 100-93, 126-98 90-91, 92-79, 103-98, 99-119, 94-90 92-86, 110-79 7-5
1956-57 88-87, 101-97, 114-107, 111-103 85-95, 95-83, 115-101 97-88, 82-94, 105-103, 107-99, 125-117 9-3
1957-58 101-112, 105-104, 106-95, 100-81, 89-96 90-89, 103-111, 124-108, 121-104, 111-93 106-107, 103-106 4-8
1958-59 99-79, 114-93 110-94, 77-84, 120-116, 128-122 128-132, 91-95, 118-100, 106-105, 114-119, 116-96 6-6
1959-60 97-107, 121-91, 108-111, 114-105 103-102, 93-99, 114-95, 113-131, 106-112, 122-118 116-112, 105-95, 117-114 8-5
1960-61 123-114, 105-109, 105-108, 123-122 140-123, 122-118, 114-112, 130-116, 112-106 133-118, 108-100, 110-101, 100-104 5-8
1961-62 120-115, 114-132, 136-123, 116-112, 120-111 117-102, 127-141, 125-124, 118-114 124-122, 134-128, 109-113 7-5
1962-63 134-110, 129-123, 111-114, 106-97 116-115, 128-131, 119-120, 124-107 124-121 6-3
1963-64
1964-65
1965-66
1966-67
1967-68
1968-69
1969-70
1970-71
1971-72
1972-73
1973-74
1974-75
1975-76
1976-77
1977-78
1978-79
1979-80
1980-81
1981-82
1982-83
1983-84
1984-85
1985-86
1986-87
1987-88
1988-89
1989-90
1990-91
1991-92
1992-93
1993-94
1994-95
1995-96
1996-97
1997-98
1998-99
1999-00
2000-01
2001-02
2002-03 99-105, 117-104
2003-04
2004-05
2005-06
2006-07
2007-08 Lakers 117, Kings 105 Kings 114, Lakers 113 Lakers 114, Kings 92

Los Angeles Lakers

  • 1947-48 to 1959-60 as Minneapolis Lakers
  • 1960-61 to present as Los Angeles Lakers

Sacramento Kings

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Statistics

Los Angeles Lakers Sacramento Kings
Total wins ' '
At Los Angeles Lakers
At Sacramento Kings
Regular season wins ' '
At Los Angeles Lakers
At Sacramento Kings
Play off wins ' '
At Los Angeles Lakers
At Sacramento Kings

References


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