DeMarcus Cousins guides Sacramento Kings past New Orleans Pelicans

By Rick Hurd, The Sports Xchange  |  Feb. 13, 2017 at 9:10 AM
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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- DeMarcus Cousins scored 28 points and added 14 rebounds and seven assists, and the Sacramento Kings rode a late first-half run that carried into the third quarter to a 105-99 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday night at the Golden 1 Center.

Darren Collison chipped in 20 points and eight assists for the short-handed Kings, who won for the third consecutive time and closed a 4-2 homestand that began with a buzzer-beater loss to the Phoenix Suns.

Sacramento (23-32) has its longest winning streak since a four-game run in late December. The Kings also matched their longest home winning streak of the season.

Cousins made 7 of 14 shots from the field, and he shook off another technical foul -- his 17th of the season -- called on him early in the first quarter for throwing what appeared to be an inadvertent elbow. Unless the NBA rescinds the call, Cousins will earn a one-game suspension with the next technical foul called on him.

He played Sunday for the second time since returning from the first one-game ban. Cousins has totaled 50 points and 24 rebounds in the two contests while trying to keep his emotions under control.

Anthony Davis scored 32 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead the Pelicans, who twice crawled within four points late in the final period.

Jrue Holiday scored 16 points and Dante Cunningham added 14 for the Pelicans, who failed in a bid to record back-to-back victories for the first time in a month.

The game turned with 2:55 left in the first half when officials ejected Pelicans guard Buddy Hield after a flagrant-2 foul. Hield tried to move around a screen set by Cousins and grabbed the Kings forward in the groin and appeared to squeeze.

Sacramento scored 11 of the game's next 13 points and trailed 56-53 at intermission. The Kings then scored the first 11 points of the second half to take control. New Orleans (21-34) never led after that.

Matt Barnes added 12 points, Ben McLemore scored 11 and Arron Afflalo had 10 for Sacramento, which won despite playing short-handed again. Guard Ty Lawson (strained left hamstring) missed his second game in a row.

NOTES: C Alexis Ajinca did not play for New Orleans amid rampant speculation he could be headed for Philadelphia in a trade for F Jhalil Okafor, who was held out the 76ers' game Sunday. ... Kings F DeMarcus Cousins and Pelicans C Anthony Davis, both University of Kentucky products under coach John Calipari, squared off for the 16th time. Davis averaged 21.2 points and 8.8 rebounds per game in the first 15 meetings, while Cousins averaged 25.7 points and 12.6 rebounds and with a streak of 12 consecutive double-doubles that ended in Sacramento's 102-94 win over New Orleans in the teams' first meeting this season. ... New Orleans G E'Twaun Moore (personal reasons) and F Terence Jones (sprained right ankle) missed their second straight games. ... The Kings have trailed by at least 20 at some point in 15 games this season. Only Orlando (18), Phoenix (18) and Brooklyn (21) have fallen behind that big that often.

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