Kings’ Rally Falls Short In Loss To New Orleans
NEW ORLEANS (AP) – Sacramento area native Ryan Anderson scored 27 points and the New Orleans Hornets survived a second half without Anthony Davis in a 114-105 victory over Sacramento on Monday.
DeMarcus Cousins led the Kings with 29 points and 13 rebounds. Isaiah Thomas scored 20 points, and Tyreke Evans had 16 on the day the NBA announced the team’s owners had a deal to potentially move the franchise to Seattle.
Anderson, who attended Oak Ridge High School in El Dorado Hills, scored 17 points in the second quarter, making 5 of 7 3-point attempts, when the Hornets raced to a 64-39 halftime lead.
Davis sat out the second half with a left ankle sprain. It is the same ankle he injured earlier in the year that sidelined him for 11 games.
However, Davis said he should be ready to play at Sacramento on Wednesday, the first of a grueling stretch in which the Hornets will play 9 of 11 games away from New Orleans Arena.
“I landed on (his) foot and rolled it,” Davis said, “Pretty sure I should be back. It’s fine. “
Greivis Vasquez scored 19 points, Eric Gordon 16, and Al-Farouz Aminu 14 for the Hornets, who have won 3 of their past 4.
Anderson scored 17 points in the second quarter and 19 in the half, making 5 of 8 3-point attempts when the Hornets raced to a 64-39 halftime lead. He finished 7 of 14 beyond the arc.
“I shot some tonight that were a little difficult,” said Anderson, who added the Kings’ defense allowed the Hornets to spread the floor. “I got open looks and the guys were looking for me.”
The Hornets shot 53.1 percent in the first 2 quarters and matched a season high for first-half points.
“It was one of our better first halves,” Davis said. “We pushed the ball offensively, we defended really well.”
The Hornets packed its defense in the paint, continually denying Sacramento the entry pass and forcing the Kings to move to the outside, where they struggled. Sacramento made its first four shots but finished the half 15 of 44, shooting 34 percent.
“We’ve got to come out there ready to play,” said Cousins, who was held to 8 points in the first half. “Giving them that (big) lead, that put us behind, and we were playing catch-up the rest of the game. If we came out early with energy we probably wouldn’t have been in that situation.”
The Hornets led by 27 midway through the quarter, but with Davis out the Kings were able to cut the deficit to single digits on several occasions in the second half, including seven in the third and fourth quarters.
“We didn’t like the sloppy play in the second half but I’m not going to dwell on that,” New Orleans coach Monty Williams said. “The good thing is our guys felt badly about it and that is something that shows character, but at the same time you don’t want to see it, giving up a 37-point quarter (the most the Hornets have allowed in the third quarter) and a 29-point quarter after the way the defense played in the first half.”
“I was proud of the way the guys came back in the third quarter,” Kings coach Keith Smart said. “It would have been easy for them to pack it in, but they came out and made a game of it.”
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.)