Kings hold off Clippers
Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) – Ron Artest posted 15 points and a career-
high 10 assists, as the Sacramento Kings held off the playoff-hopeful Los
Angeles Clippers, 105-100, at the Staples Center.
The Clippers are now a game behind the Warriors for the eighth and final
playoff spot in the Western Conference, as Golden State downed Minnesota
121-108 earlier in the day. LA ends the regular season with tilts Tuesday at
Phoenix and Wednesday at home against New Orleans.
Francisco Garcia scored 16 points for Sacramento, which has split its last
four games. Mike Bibby scored 15 points, Kevin Martin and John Salmons both
had 13, and Brad Miller added 12 in the win.
Elton Brand notched 29 points and 14 rebounds for the Clippers, who had a two-
game winning streak snapped after dropping three in a row. Corey Maggette
posted 21 points and 10 rebounds, while Quinton Ross netted 14 points and Tim
Thomas 13 in the loss.
Trailing 81-65, the Clippers started to rally by going on a 12-4 run to open
the final stanza, and Ross’ pair of free throws approaching the midway point
cut their deficit to just 85-77. LA trimmed its deficit to 104-100 on
Maggette’s free throw with seven ticks on the clock, but Quincy Douby
converted 1-of-2 free throws less than a second later to seal the win, and
Maggette missed on a three-point attempt in the final seconds.
Sacramento opened an early lead on a 10-0 run midway through the first sparked
by a Shareef Abdur-Rahim dunk, and added a point to its margin, 34-23, heading
into the second.
The Kings added to their lead on a 12-2 spurt finished by a Salmons runner
midway through the second, and led 60-41 at halftime.
The Kings started pulling away on a 9-2 run ignited by a pair of Martin
buckets for a 71-47 lead with 8:11 remaining. The Clippers closed the stanza
on a 10-4 spurt as Maggette’s free throw with four ticks left made an 81-65
deficit heading into the fourth.
Clippers guard Cuttino Mobley left with a strained left calf in the fourth and
did not return…The teams split four games this season. The Kings have won
nine of their last 11 at the Clippers.