Kings

Tyreke turning the corner?

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Tyreke turning the corner?

While Tyreke Evans' resurgence has lifted the Sacramento Kings, the Minnesota Timberwolves have yet to reap the full benefit of Kevin Love's return to the lineup.

The Kings hope to get another standout performance from their star guard Tuesday night as they seek a third win in four games and try to deal the Timberwolves a sixth consecutive defeat.

Evans has averaged 21.3 points and 52.5 percent shooting in the last four contests for Sacramento (4-9), which had dropped five in a row before taking two of three. He scored a season-high 27 points in a 108-97 victory over Utah on Saturday.

Evans averaged 11.6 points and 38.8 percent from the field in his first nine contests.

"If I miss one shot, I'm (still) trusting my shot. I've been coming here after the games and before games just to get extra shots up and it's working for me," he said.

With Evans' help, the Kings have topped 100 points and shot at least 50.0 percent in the past three games after averaging 91.2 points and 41.8 percent in their first 10.

"I think this team is always growing and learning," coach Keith Smart said. "I think it's going to be a process for us. We've shown we can compete and play with everyone. Now, our offense is catching up."

The Kings might have a chance to keep rolling against the Timberwolves, who have struggled to contain opponents lately. Minnesota (5-7) has allowing an average of 101.5 points in its last four games after giving up 88.5 in its first eight.

The Timberwolves allowed Golden State to outscore them 26-11 in the fourth quarter of a 96-85 defeat Saturday, including a 19-2 run. They were also outrebounded 48-39 with Love the only Minnesota player pulling down more than six boards.

Love totaled 15 rebounds but also scored a season-low 15 points and shot 6 of 20 while struggling with a protective pad on his injured right hand. The All-Star forward scored a combined 58 points in his first two games back.

"(The pad is) very restricting," Love said. "I can't bend my hand all the way back and I couldn't get a good feel for the basketball. The doctor said it was OK to play but at the same time he warned that I'm coming back two weeks early and I have to keep working on my conditioning, my range of motion and shooting."

The Timberwolves didn't need Love's help in a season-opening 92-80 win over the Kings on Nov. 2, but injuries and Evans' recent play could result in a different outcome this time. Minnesota is without Chase Budinger, Brandon Roy and Ricky Rubio.

J.J. Barea, who scored a team-best 21 points against the Kings, has totaled 24 points and shot 32.0 percent in his three games since returning from a sprained left foot.

The Timberwolves have lost six of seven on the road to Sacramento. Evans had 24 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists in a 116-108 victory April 2 after missing a 115-99 win March 18 due to a sprained ankle.

Kings look to get healthy with opener just days away

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USATSI

Kings look to get healthy with opener just days away

SACRAMENTO - All hands on deck. The Sacramento Kings open the 2017-18 schedule Wednesday night against the Houston Rockets at Golden 1 Center and it looks like they might do so with a full arsenal of players at their disposal.

Point guard De’Aaron Fox returned to practice on Sunday and then participated in the team’s annual Fanfest. If his dance moves are any indication, the 19-year-old’s back is feeling just fine.

Veteran George Hill tweaked his groin Friday against the Golden State Warriors, leaving his availability for opening night in question. Hill, 31, who has a history of groin injuries, was on the court Monday practicing and said he is ready to play.

“Everything is feeling good right now,” Hill said Monday following practice.

The only player who didn’t practice on Monday is rookie Bogdan Bogdanovic, who sprained his right ankle against the Warriors. According to head coach Dave Joerger,  the team is hopeful that the Serbian sharpshooter will return in time for Game 1.

“We’re still shooting for Wednesday for both of them,” Joerger said of Hill and Bogdanovic.

New look Rockets

The Rockets went 55-27 last season under head coach Mike D’Antoni, but that didn’t stop them from going all in during the offseason. With MVP runner-up James Harden already manning the backcourt, Houston added nine-time All-Star Chris Paul as their new starting point guard.

“Leadership, he’s a floor general,” Hill said about Paul. “Anywhere he goes, he’ll make a team better. We know they were already a good team without him, coming in with him is going to be a bigger task.”

It’s a new look roster and the expectations are huge for the Rockets. Houston averaged 115.3 points per game last season and led the league in both 3-point attempts and makes. This season, they also added two strong perimeter defenders in P.J. Tucker and Luc Mbah a Moute.

It’s a huge test coming out of the gate for Sacramento. Following the contest against the Rockets, the Kings hit the road for three straight before returning to Golden 1 next Thursday to face DeMarcus Cousins and the New Orleans Pelicans.


Camp notes

With the season just around the corner, the Sacramento Kings made their final roster cuts on Sunday afternoon. David Stockton, Matt Jones and Reggie Hearn were waived, leaving the Kings with 15 rostered players and two two-way players in Jack Cooley and JaKarr Sampson.

Stockton, Jones and Hearn are all expected to join the Reno Bighorns of the NBA’s G-League.

Kings waive three players days before season opener

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AP

Kings waive three players days before season opener

SACRAMENTO The Sacramento Kings announced Sunday that the team has requested waivers on guards David Stockton, Matt Jones and Reggie Hearn.  

Stockton appeared in two contests for Sacramento during the preseason, averaging 11.5 points (9-13 FG, 3-4 3pt, 2-4 FT) and 5.0 assists in 16.3 minutes per game, including a game-high 23 points to accompany three rebounds, eight assists and two steals off the bench at Golden State (10/13).

Jones played in five exhibition games, posting 2.0 points, 1.0 rebounds and 11.7 minutes per contest. 

Hearn appeared in one preseason game. 

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