Questionable foul call crushes Kings, losing streak reaches five

Questionable foul call crushes Kings, losing streak reaches five


CHICAGO -- Following an embarrassing road loss the previous day, Dwyane Wade felt the Bulls were desperate for a win on Saturday night.

"I like this team when we're desperate," he said. "For some reason, we play better desperate."

Wade had 30 points and two key steals in the final minute, Jimmy Butler added 23 points and Chicago overcame a 42-point performance by DeMarcus Cousins for a 102-99 victory over the Sacramento Kings.

Wade, who had 13 points in the fourth quarter, snapped a 99-all tie by making a free throw with 14 seconds left. He had missed a breakaway dunk after making a steal, but Cousins was called for a questionable foul for putting his hand on Wade's hip as he tried to dunk the ball.

Cousins was incredulous immediately after the call and turned over four trash cans on his way to the locker room after the game. But by the time the media was allowed in the locker room - nearly a half hour after the game ended - his tone was more sarcastic than angry.

"They made the absolute right call," he said. "Incredible job by the referee crew tonight. I don't have a complaint in the world. They should get more recognition on how well they ref these games. They don't get the credit they deserve, so kudos to them. I applaud them."

At that point, Cousins - who also had 14 rebounds and was 16 for 28 from the field - clapped his hands several times.

Wade acknowledged that the contact by Cousins wasn't the reason he missed the dunk. He said he simply took off too early and came up a little short.

"Hey, sometimes you get a call, sometimes you don't," Wade said. "Personally, I haven't gotten a lot all year, so I'm not gonna apologize for nothing."

Besides, Sacramento still had plenty of time for a potential game-winner at the other end. But Wade came up with another steal and fed Michael Carter-Williams for a breakaway basket to seal the win.

Chicago had dropped two straight, including a loss Friday night at Atlanta where coach Fred Hoiberg questioned the team's effort.

"The last couple of minutes, it was a desperate team trying to win a ballgame and doing whatever it takes," Wade said.


Kings: They have dropped seven straight in Chicago. Sacramento's last win was a 102-98 victory on Dec. 21, 2009 - a game in which the Kings trailed 79-44 for the largest comeback in franchise history.

Bulls: F Doug McDermott appeared to break out of slump with a 31-point effort (in 33 minutes) against Memphis on Jan. 15, but has a combined 12 points on 5-for-18 in the three games since. He had three points on 1-for-5 shooting on Saturday.


The loss and the disputed foul call overshadowed a great game by Cousins, who pumped in back-to-back 3-pointers down the stretch to give the Kings a 97-95 lead with just over two minutes left.

"His play is incredible," Sacramento coach Dave Joerger said. "He just keeps getting better."

Said Wade: "DeMarcus was giving us everything we could have asked for."


Cousins wasn't whistled for a technical foul on Saturday, but has a league-high 14 this season. If he accumulates 16, he will be suspended one game, then one game for every other infraction thereafter.


In a game where neither team held a double-digit lead, a deciding factor likely was Chicago making 12 more free throws (28 to 16). Wade and Butler were a combined 22 for 25 from the line. Cousins was 8 for 9 from the line.


Kings: Visit the Detroit Pistons on Monday night in the third game of eight-game road trip.

Bulls: At Orlando on Tuesday night. Chicago had a 112-80 victory in the first meeting with the Magic on Nov. 7.

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.