Wednesday , Apr , 21 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

Royal palace: Kings grab both games at ARCO

Sacramento, CA (Sports Network) – Brad Miller’s jumper with 34.1 seconds
remaining in the fourth quarter gave Sacramento the lead for good and
the Kings went on to post an 83-79 victory over Dallas in Game 2 of their
Western Conference quarterfinal series at ARCO Arena.

Sacramento leads the best-of-seven matchup, 2-0, with Game 3 scheduled for
Saturday at American Airlines Center.

“We’re going home and we need to win both games, there’s no question about
that,” said Mavericks head coach Don Nelson.

Mike Bibby scored 24 points for Sacramento, while teammate Chris Webber
recorded his first-ever playoff triple-double with 19 points, 13 rebounds and
12 assists.

Doug Christie and Peja Stojakovic each netted 13 points for the Kings.
Christie also pulled down 11 boards. Sacramento has not lost in the first
round since the 2000 postseason, when it fell to the Lakers in five games.

Dirk Nowitzki paced the Mavericks with 28 points and also grabbed 10 rebounds.
Marquis Daniels collected 16 points and 11 boards and Steve Nash chipped in 13
points and nine assists for Dallas.

The two highest scoring teams in the NBA both struggled from the floor. The
Mavericks were just 30-of-93 (32 percent), while the Kings made only 30-of-81
field goal attempts (37 percent).

“It seemed like there was a lid on the basket,” added Nelson. “We had a lot of
opportunities. Either team could have won this game.”

Eduardo Najera’s layup with 6:09 remaining in the fourth quarter gave Dallas a
70-66 lead.

Bibby then drained a three-pointer to ignite a 7-2 run that put the Kings in
front 73-72 with 4:16 left.

After Nowitzki converted a slam dunk, Bibby hit another three-point shot to
make it 76-74 in favor of Sacramento with 3:05 remaining.

“I wanted to be aggressive. I wanted to be a part of the game,” said Bibby. “I
tried to get it going for us in transition.”

The teams then traded a free throw apiece, before Daniels made a layup to knot
the score at 77-77. Bibby’s short bank shot gave the Kings the lead, but
Daniels countered with a pair of foul shots to again tie the game with 56.9
seconds left.

On the next possession for Sacramento, Miller hit a 20-foot jumper to give the
Kings an 81-79 advantage. Dallas then had an opportunity to tie or take the
lead, but Nash missed a three-pointer and Daniels misfired on the follow-up
attempt. Webber was then fouled with 19.6 seconds left, but proceeded to miss
both free throws.

The Mavericks could not take advantage, as Michael Finley lost the ball while
going up for a jump shot. It appeared that Stojakovic may have gotten a piece
of the ball as Finley started his shooting motion.

Christie was then fouled with 9.3 seconds remaining and sank both tries from
the stripe to seal it.

“We got the stops we needed to and we made some big plays down the stretch,”
said Kings head coach Rick Adelman.

The first quarter was tight throughout and ended with Sacramento clinging to a
21-19 lead.

The Mavericks then opened the second quarter with a 14-6 run, keyed by six
points from Nowitzki, to take a 33-27 advantage.

Dallas’ lead reached seven at 36-29 on a free throw by Antoine Walker, but the
Kings responded with a 15-4 spurt to grab a 44-40 advantage. Webber had eight
points during the surge.

Finley then hit a jumper in the final minute of the period to make it a two-
point game at the intermission. Webber ended the first half with 13 points,
while Nowitzki led the Mavericks in the opening 24 minutes with 17.

Webber’s basket with just under eight minutes left in the third quarter staked
Sacramento to a 53-44 advantage. The Kings then suffered a drought from the
field and Dallas stormed back to take the lead. Nash’s jumper with 3:32
remaining gave the Mavericks a 57-56 advantage. Finley scored five points
during the 13-3 spurt.

Sacramento then scored the next five points — all from the foul line — to
regain the lead and eventually held a 61-60 edge after 36 minutes.