INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Rudy Gay scored 31, Darren Collison had 23 and the Sacramento Kings snapped their eight-game losing skid in beating the Indiana Pacers 99-94 on Saturday night.
DeMarcus Cousins earned his 28th double-double of the season with 20 points and 19 rebounds. The center fouled out with 1:46 to play and the Kings with a 93-85 lead.
The struggling Kings (17-29) needed their early dominance to fend off the late-charging Pacers.
David West and C.J. Miles each scored 17 points for the Pacers (17-32).
The Kings outscored Indiana 34-21 in the first quarter and continued building the lead into the second. Midway through the period, Cousins made a pair of free throws to give the visitors a 55-32 lead, the largest of the game.
Then Indiana came charging back with some late free throws to cut the lead to 93-89. Then with less than 10 seconds to play, George Hill, who had 14 points, made a 3-pointer to cut the lead to 97-94. But Gay sealed the win from the line.
The Kings overcame a poor 1 of 7 shooting to open the first quarter by driving the lane and drawing fouls. They were a perfect 6 of 6 from the line in the opening 12 minutes.
Then the Kings caught fire, finishing the quarter shooting 9-15 to build a 30-12 lead on a jumper from Gay with 1:53 to play.
The Kings were 26 of 29 from the free-throw line for the game. On the season, the Kings entered shooting 78 percent.
Hill came off the bench and scored seven points during a 12-2 run in the second quarter to help the Pacers cut into the 23-point deficit. From the start of the run to the game’s conclusion, the Pacers outscored the Kings 59-42.
Kings: The starting five from Saturday’s game (Gay, Thompson, Cousins, McLemore, Collison) are now 13-14 overall and were 0-5 during the now shelved eight-game losing streak. Since Tyrone Corbin took over the head coaching duties on Dec. 15, the Kings are 6-16, using seven different lineups.
Pacers: The injury bug strikes again as Vogel said during his pregame interview that Lavoy Allen would miss time due to a right knee strain. He hurt it during the Pacers 103-82 win over the Knicks on Thursday. Vogel also indicated that Saturday’s game would likely be the last minute-restricted game for Hill, who is recovering from a sore left groin.
Kings: Host Warriors on Tuesday
Pacers: Host Pistons on Wednesday