Sunday, April 20, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

With rumors swirling, Kings fall in OT

SACRAMENTO — O.J. Mayo had 24 points and 10 rebounds, Vince Carter scored 23 points off the bench and the Dallas Mavericks rallied from 17 points down to beat the Sacramento Kings, 117-112, in overtime Thursday night.

With the franchise’s possible sale and relocation to Seattle on the minds of Kings fans, DeMarcus Cousins had 29 points and nine rebounds before getting ejected in overtime for elbowing Carter in the face. Tyreke Evans scored 20 points and Isaiah Thomas had 18 points for the Kings, who lost their third straight game.

The mistake-prone Kings kept shooting — and missing — from beyond the arc to allow Dallas to stay close despite its horrendous night from the floor.

Sacramento outshot the Mavericks 49 to 42 percent but finished just 5 for 21 on 3-pointers and committed 20 turnovers. Dallas outrebounded the Kings 52 to 41.

Shawn Marion added 19 points and 10 rebounds to help the Mavericks snap a four-game losing streak. Dallas, which had lost 10 of 11, finished its short road trip 1-2.

The Mavericks had plenty of chances to win the game in regulation.

After Mayo made 1 of 2 free throws to put Dallas ahead 101-98, Thomas banked a 3-pointer off the glass and in the face of Mike James with 9.1 seconds remaining. The Kings twice knocked the ball out of bounds in the half court and forced Darren Collison to take a fadeway jumper that bounced off the rim to send the game to overtime.

A brief, albeit familiar, moment of frustration ended Sacramento’s shot.

Cousins, who has been suspended twice by the NBA and once by the Kings this season for his actions, lost the ball driving in the lane and elbowed Carter in the face away from the ball. Officials reviewed the play and upgraded the call from a flagrant 1 to a flagrant 2 with 41.9 seconds to play.

Carter hit both free throws and the Mavericks got the ball. Marion later made another pair to put Dallas ahead 115-110 and send the home fans to the exits.

The game marked the first time the Kings played since the latest — and perhaps most serious — round of relocation talks began a day earlier, when word spread that Seattle investor Chris Hansen has contacted the Maloof family about buying the Kings. No deal has been reached yet.

Newspaper and television reporters from Seattle showed up along with an increased local media presence. Fans contemplated whether they should keep supporting a team they love. Ushers and parking attendants who depend on the team for work approached reporters asking if they knew what might happen.

Even players and coaches admitted all the attention made it difficult to focus on the game.

“It’s definitely going to be a distraction,” Kings coach Keith Smart said before the game. “But we’re pros. We’ve got to figure out a way how to separate the two and then get ready to play.”

The crowed was scattered, and sometimes spirited, much as it has been all season.

The Associated Press

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