Mon, Jan 31, 2011 - Page 19 News List

NBA: In-form Hornets dethroned by Kings

REGAL ROOKIE:DeMarcus Cousins finished with 25 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists, all team-highs, but he ran into foul trouble which sparked a late Hornets rally

Reuters and AP, SAN FRANCISCO

The Sacramento Kings held off the late-charging New Orleans Hornets to halt the visitors’ 10-game winning streak with a 102-96 triumph on Saturday.

The Kings surged clear with a 12-0 run early in the second quarter to grab a 56-46 advantage by halftime on the strength of 58 percent shooting and a sensational first half from DeMarcus Cousins, who had 19 points, six rebounds and five assists.

“Any young player needs to learn the league and what it takes. DeMarcus has made great strides in that regard,” Kings coach Paul Westphal told reporters of his rookie.

Cousins finished the game with 25 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists, all team-highs, but ran into foul trouble, allowing the Hornets to capitalize on his absence to close to within two points with just under six minutes remaining.

The Hornets were unable to get any closer, but challenged again with just under two minutes remaining when they trailed 96-94, before Cousins absorbed a charging foul from Marcus Thompson.

On the ensuing possession, the Kings pulled down three consecutive offensive rebounds and Samuel Dalembert completed the play with a basket to secure the victory.

“We had chances down the stretch, in the beginning of the second quarter they scored 12 [straight] and it was hard to recover from that. It felt like 20 because it was so easy and so quick,” Hornets coach Monty Williams said. “It’s one of those games. We’ve seen these mistakes in past games and it just caught up with us tonight.”

Tyreke Evans, who also missed significant minutes with foul trouble, scored 18 points for the Kings and Dalembert added 16 points off the bench. David West led the Hornets with 21 points and Chris Paul scored 19.

Kings forward Jason Thompson left the game in the first quarter after suffering a sprained right ankle. He is listed as day-to-day.

CLIPPERS 103, BOBCATS 88

In Los Angeles, Blake Griffin had 24 points and 10 rebounds as Los Angeles extended their home winning streak to eight.

The victory allowed the Clippers to match the 1992-1993 squad for the longest home winning streak since the franchise moved from San Diego to Los Angeles in the 1984-1985 season.

Griffin scored his 38th double-double of the season and 32nd in 33 games, shooting 11-for-23 in 41 minutes.

Stephen Jackson and reserve Gerald Henderson each scored 14 points for Charlotte.

BUCKS 91, NETS 81

In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Australian Andrew Bogut had 17 points and 18 rebounds to help Milwaukee to their third consecutive win.

Carlos Delfino led Milwaukee in scoring with 21 points, while Keyon Dooling had 14 points and nine assists. Brook Lopez scored 26 points for New Jersey.

SPURS 108, ROCKETS 95

In San Antonio, Texas, Manu Ginobili scored 22 points as the San Antonio Spurs beat the Houston Rockets to become the first side to reach 40 wins this season.

Richard Jefferson added 18 points to help the Spurs win their 18th in a row at home, but it was San Antonio’s last game at home for three weeks, with the Spurs embarking on their annual Rodeo Road Trip.

The NBA-best Spurs (40-7) will play nine straight on the road heading into the All-Star game, in which Spurs coach Gregg Popovich will direct the West squad.

Luis Scola led the Rockets with 23 points and 10 rebounds.

MAVERICKS 102, HAWKS 91

In Dallas, Germany’s Dirk Nowitzki scored 19 points, while Jason Terry added 18 points and a season-high 11 assists to help Dallas improve to 5-1 following a six-game losing streak.

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