NBA: Kings gain ground on Grizzlies with 104-101 victory

Reuters

Posted at Feb 29 2020 03:38 PM

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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De'Aaron Fox returned from a one-game absence to score a team-high 25 points Friday night and the Sacramento Kings survived a frantic finish to record a 104-101 win over the host Memphis Grizzlies.

Playing the second night of a back-to-back, the Kings rallied from an early 12-point deficit to dominate a majority of the final three quarters to earn a second win in three tries against Memphis this season, clinching the season series.

The win was the Kings' fourth in their last five games and allowed them to move within three games of Memphis in the Western Conference playoff race.

Despite getting a season-high 32 points from Dillon Brooks and a career-high 25 rebounds from Jonas Valanciunas, the injury-riddled Grizzlies lost their fifth straight.

Coming off a 112-108 loss at Oklahoma City on Thursday night without Fox, who complained of a tight lower right abdomen, the Kings fell immediately behind the Grizzlies.

Sacramento trailed 30-18 in the final seconds of the first quarter before Buddy Hield nailed a buzzer-beating 3-pointer, cutting the gap to nine at period's end.

The Kings went on to lead by three at halftime and by as many as 11 in the third quarter before the Grizzlies made a fourth-quarter push.

Memphis rallied within 100-96 before Fox countered with 54.9 seconds left to push the lead back to six.

Ja Morant had two subsequent hoops, the second of which he turned into a 3-point play with 10.9 seconds left to make it a 102-101 game.

Hield then dropped in a pair of free throws to increase the margin to three, after which Tyus Jones misfired on a desperation 3-point attempt at the final horn.

Fox complemented his points with a team-high five assists for the Kings, who won three of four consecutive road games.

Harry Giles III finished with 16 points and Nemanja Bjelica recorded a 13-point, 11-rebound double-double for Sacramento, while Hield totaled 14 points and Kent Bazemore 13.

Brooks' game-high point total came on 12-for-22 shooting for the Grizzlies, who once again were without Jaren Jackson Jr. (sprained left knee) and Brandon Clarke (strained right quad).

Valanciunas had 13 points to go with his 25 rebounds, while Morant went for 20 points and De'Anthony Melton 10.

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