Instant Replay: Despite rally, another slow starts dooms Kings

Instant Replay: Despite rally, another slow starts dooms Kings


SACRAMENTO -- It’s raining threes in Sacramento. The wintery weather in the Capital City couldn’t chill the Houston Rockets from behind the arc. The visiting team put on a show Friday night, lighting the Kings up for 21 long balls on their way to a 117-104 victory.

With James Harden drawing a crowd, Trevor Ariza, Ryan Anderson, Patrick Beverley, Eric Gordon, Sam Dekker and Corey Brewer camped around the perimeter and let it fly. The result was one of the best 3-point shooting nights in recent memory.

Ariza led the way, hitting 5-for-9 from deep for 17 points . . . before the first half could come to a close. The veteran wing finished the night with 18 points on six makes from 3-point land.

With the perimeter game cooking, Clint Capela went to work in the post, coming away with 17 points and 10 rebounds. 

Harden struggled with his shot early, but still managed to kick in 23 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds for a triple-double.

DeMarcus Cousins found his shot late on his way to a 32-point, nine-rebound game to lead Sacramento, but it wasn’t nearly enough to keep the Kings in the ballgame.

After sitting out the last three games as a healthy scratch, seldom used Omri Casspi came off Dave Joerger’s bench and provided a spark. The 28-year-old forward saw action for just the seventh time this season and made the most of his opportunity. Casspi finished the evening with a modest seven points, four rebounds and five assists, but his energy likely stopped this from being a 40-point blowout.

Matt Barnes tried to will the Kings back into the game, scoring 12 points on 5-for-10 shooting. Garrett Temple continues to play a physical style of defense that the Kings sorely need. He finished the night with nine points and two steals as he slowed Harden.

Ty Lawson added 12 points and four rebounds and Kosta Koufos chipped in 10 points and five boards off the bench. Rudy Gay struggled from the field, hitting 4-of-11 shots on his way to 10 points.

STANDOUT PERFORMER -- Ariza had to put his hand in a bucket of ice to cool it off after this game. Sacramento left him open on the perimeter and the vet made them pay.

TURNING POINT -- This game was over when the Rockets hit eight 3-pointers and outscored the Kings 38-19 in the first quarter. Sacramento didn’t roll over and play dead, but it’s hard to erase a big lead when your opponent drops in 63 points from behind the arc.

INJURY UPDATE --  The Kings continued to navigate the schedule with a full roster of healthy bodies.

WHAT'S NEXT -- After finishing their five game homestand, the Kings hit the road for six straight beginning Sunday against the Nets in Brooklyn.

Vince Carter 'very humbled' to pass Patrick Ewing on all-time scoring list

Vince Carter 'very humbled' to pass Patrick Ewing on all-time scoring list

SACRAMENTO -- Half man, half amazing. Vincanity. Air-Canada. V.C.

Vince Carter has plenty of nicknames on his bio. He also has plenty of achievements over his long NBA career. On Monday night in Sacramento, he added a new one.  

With his seven point performance in the Kings’ 106-90 loss to the Detroit Pistons, the 41-year-old forward surpassed a former teammate on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.

“It means a lot, because in my days in Orlando, I played with Pat Ewing and know him very well,” Carter said following the game.

Carter came into the night needing five points to tie Ewing’s 24,815 mark for 22nd place on the all-time scoring list.

In the early second quarter, Carter stole a pass from Andre Drummond at the top of the key  and flew down for a breakaway jam to move within three points of Ewing.

“It’s fun for everyone, just to show I can still do it,” Carter said of the dunk. “I think I’ve proven I can, but it’s still fun. I told James Ennis on the way, I said, ‘stay back, don’t foul me.’”

Ennis likely couldn’t have caught Carter either way, but the slam got the Kings crowd going.

At the 4:12 mark of the second, Carter drilled a 12-footer to move within one point of Ewing and with 29.5 seconds remaining in the third, Carter knocked down a 26-foot 3-pointer that rattled around and tried to spin out.

That was the last bucket of the evening for Carter, giving him 24,817 for his 20-year career. He now sits alone in 22nd place, two points ahead of the former New York Knicks star center.

“That’s crazy,” 20-year-old De’Aaron Fox said. “That’s a lot of buckets. Top-25, that’s huge - a lot of guys won’t get close to that.”

Carter now sits just 375 points behind legendary Laker, Jerry West for 21st place and 462 shy of Reggie Miller for a spot in the top 20.

“When you talk about (being) in the top 25 in scoring all-time, you just look at the list of the greats and elite players and the best of the best that still play, and to be in that group, I’m very humbled and thankful for it,” Carter told the media scrum surrounding his locker.

Carter was away from the team over the weekend dealing with a death in the family. He returned to Sacramento to play on Monday, but did so with a heavy heart.

For most of his life, the basketball court has been his place to escape. After two decades as a pro, it still has that effect.

“I just still love it, it’s been great to me, it gives me an opportunity to be around the younger generation and still be around the game I love and accomplish things like this,” Carter said.

He’s played sparingly for Sacramento this season, but his impact on the bench, in practice and behind the scenes as a leader and mentor to the young Kings has been immeasurable.

Carter hasn’t committed to retiring following the season. He will weigh his options, but there is a possibly he will look for one last run at an NBA championship.

Carter passes Ewing on all-time scoring list


Carter passes Ewing on all-time scoring list

SACRAMENTO -- Moving on up. Vince Carter came into Monday evening’s matchup against the Detroit Pistons needing just five points to surpass Patrick Ewing for 22nd place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. He got that and a little more.

Carter, 41, picked off a Pistons pass in the second quarter and hammered down a breakaway dunk to score his first two points of the evening. He knocked down a jumper in the lane before halftime to get within one point of Ewing and then moved ahead of the 7-footer with a 3-pointer in the third quarter.

The 20-year NBA veteran now sits at 24,817 points. He is 375 points behind the great Jerry West’s 25,192, who currently sits in 21st place on the all-time list.