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What we learned in Kings' impressive road win over Raptors

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Harrison Barnes driving against Raptors

Break up the Kings. After falling five games under the .500 mark at 5-10 last week, the Kings have now rattled off three straight wins after taking down the Toronto Raptors on Friday night.

Harrison Barnes got the Kings off to a hot shooting start, rookie Tyrese Haliburton found the open man, Hassan Whiteside was a load in the post and Cory Joseph provided a punch off the bench as Sacramento came away with the 126-124 victory.

Pascal Siakam put up a big number against the Kings’ front line and Fred VanVleet had a solid night, but it wasn’t enough to turn the tide for Toronto.

Here are three takeaways as the Kings picked up their third straight win to improve to 8-10 on the season. 

Wheeling and dealing

Haliburton is turning into an elite distributor. The rookie guard started off his night with a couple of uncharacteristic turnovers, but then he went to work.

On a night when the Kings dished out 31 assists, the rookie was on point. Haliburton set a new career-high for assists, breaking into double-digits for the first time with 11 dimes.

The rookie struggled with his shot, but still managed to finish with 11 points, six rebounds, a steal and a block. He even had a highlight reel dunk and a huge clutch shot in the final minute. 

Backcourt magic

De’Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield were supposed to be a dynamic scoring duo coming into the season. Fox has lived up to his billing, but Hield is just now finding his stroke.

 

After a 29-point breakout game against the Magic, Hield followed that up with 22 points on 5-for-8 shooting from 3-point range against the Raptors. 

Fox added 24 points on 8-for-14 shooting and chipped in four assists, although he turned the ball over seven times and took a shot to the left quad in the fourth. 

When these two are scoring, the Kings are tough to beat. They went quiet late, which almost cost Sacramento the game.

CoJo shines against his ex

Joseph hasn’t really looked like himself since the first week of the season. But against his former team, he got back on track.

Joseph was a difference maker off the bench, scoring 16 points on 6-for-10 shooting to go with four assists.

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This was by far Joseph’s best game of the season. He was active on both ends of the court and found a way to be impactful.