Sports

Kings deal short-handed Rockets 14th consecutive defeat


FILE PHOTO Harrison Barnes #40 of the Sacramento Kings is congratulated by Buddy Hield #24 and Marvin Bagley III #35 after he dunked the ball against the Charlotte Hornets in the fourth quarter at Golden 1 Center on February 28, 2021 in Sacramento, California. (Photo by EZRA SHAW / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

De’Aaron Fox scored a game-high 30 points and played a critical role in a decisive second-quarter run that spurred the Sacramento Kings to a 125-105 victory over the visiting Houston Rockets on Thursday.

The Rockets dropped their 14th consecutive game while the Kings improved to 3-2 in their past five.

Fox added seven rebounds and nine assists to his ledger and served as the linchpin of a balanced attack for Sacramento. He was the ignition for a 15-0 run that erased a 39-37 Houston lead, following a three-point play with a 3-pointer that got the Kings off and running.

Marvin Bagley III also provided a three-point play during the surge that netted the Kings a 52-39 lead.

When the Rockets clawed back to within six points, Sacramento closed the half with a 10-2 run.

All five starters scored in double figures for the Kings, with Harrison Barnes and Richaun Holmes chipping in 20 points and 11 rebounds apiece. Buddy Hield scored 20 points while draining five 3-pointers, Bagley scored 11 and Cory Joseph contributed 13 off the bench.

The Rockets were again forced to play with a makeshift lineup. Victor Oladipo led Houston with 23 points and added nine assists, but he shot just 7 of 21 from the floor. Eric Gordon added 17 points — all in the first half — before departing in the third quarter with a groin injury.

Houston opened the game without Christian Wood (ankle), John Wall (knee), Danuel House Jr. (knee) and David Nwaba (wrist) prior to losing Gordon. Forward P.J. Tucker was a healthy scratch and is the focus of trade rumors with the trading deadline just two weeks away.

Kevin Porter Jr. made his Rockets debut and finished with 13 points, 10 assists, five rebounds and three steals. However, with their depth compromised, the Rockets had Porter, Kenyon Martin Jr. and Anthony Lamb, all recent recalls from their G League affiliate, on the court simultaneously.

The Rockets missed 15 consecutive 3-point attempts to close the first half and finished 11 of 45 from behind the arc. Sacramento, second in the NBA in paint points, recorded 66 points in the paint.

–Field Level Media



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