Kings come up short against Mavericks


Kings come up short against Mavericks


SACRAMENTO (AP) Overshadowed at times on a team stocked with scorers, Jose Barea is rarely the offensive focus late in the game for the Dallas Mavericks.But it was Barea playing the biggest role late in Mavericks's 10th straight games.The backup guard had 15 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter for the Mavericks, who held off the Sacramento Kings in a 102-100 victory Wednesday night.With All-Star Dirk Nowitzki nursing a sore wrist and having an off game, Barea was encouraged to make plays in the fourth.The 6-foot guard did just that, hitting a pair of 3-pointers and connecting on 6 of 8 shots overall in scoring over half of Dallas's 28 fourth-quarter points. It was Barea's fourth 20-plus point game of the season."They kept giving me the ball and it kept working out," said Barea, who played 12 of his 21 minutes in the fourth quarter. "I love it. I love having the ball in my hands and making things happen."Samuel Dalembert had a season-high 20 points for Sacramento, including 12 in the fourth quarter. DeMarcus Cousins, who was ejected from the game with a pair of technicals, had 19 points and 15 rebounds and Tyreke Evans contributed 16 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists.The Kings have lost four straight, and for the 18th time this season they squandered a fourth-quarter lead. They have dropped seven straight games to the Mavs."Whatever problems we have had closing games, that was not evident tonight," Kings coach Paul Westphal said. "We did everything that you need to win a game and came up short against a great team that did a little bit more to win the game."Jason Terry scored 22 points for Dallas, Jason Kidd had 14 points and eight rebounds and Tyson Chandler added 13 points. Nowitzki had 10 points on 4 of 14 shooting.With Nowitzki missing all three shots in the fourth quarter, the Mavericks needed their typically reliable bench even more than ever. Nowitzki hurt his wrist in the first half Monday against the Cleveland Cavaliers. The X-rays were negative, but he had only three first-half points on 1 of 4 shooting.
REWIND: Cavs lose 25th straight
"Dirk was struggling with the wrist," Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said. "Clearly his shot doesn't feel right. Barea had a great game. In the fourth quarter he was our go-to guy and was making plays. He did a great job scoring and was battling on defense."The Mavericks took the lead on Terry's 3-pointer and Barea added another one with the shot clock running down to put Dallas in front 100-95 with 1:31 remaining."The shot felt great, thank God it went in," Barea said.With the Kings trailing 100-98, Evans drove into a crowd and put up an airball and Nowitzki grabbed the rebound. Terry made two free throws with 4 seconds left to put the Mavericks ahead 102-98."Coach drew up the play. DeMarcus set a pick, Sam (Dalembert) set a pick, and I just tried to be aggressive," Evans said. "They didn't give us the call so I probably should have pulled up (for a jumper). It's rare when a ref calls a foul like that at the end of the game."Terry made a free throw following a technical foul on Cousins. On Dallas' next possession, Kidd buried a 3-pointer from the corner with 6:46 left to give the Mavericks an 89-84 lead.Following an unproductive first half, Cousins was aggressive in the third quarter, getting 12 points and six rebounds to help the Kings rally from a nine-point deficit and close the gap to 74-73 heading into the fourth.The Mavericks trailed for a large portion of the first, but closed out the second quarter with a 19-4 advantage that included a pair of 3-pointers by Kidd that sent Dallas into halftime with a 56-47 lead.Terry scored 12 first-half points and Chandler had 11 for the Mavericks, who outscored the Kings 36-19 in the second quarter. Evans and Dalembert had eight points for the Kings.Notes: Prior to the game, Kings part-time announcer Bill Walton held a Grateful Dead meet-and-greet with fans that included Mickey Hart, the band's drummer. ... Dalembert came off the bench and connected on his first four shots over a three-minute period. ... Former Kings player Peja Stojakovic missed both his 3-pointers and remains tied with Dale Ellis for fourth on the all-time 3-point list with 1,719. Stojakovic made 1,070 3-pointers in his nine seasons with the Kings.

NBA Gameday: Steph Curry close to passing Kobe Bryant

NBA Gameday: Steph Curry close to passing Kobe Bryant

Programming note: Warriors-76ers coverage starts today at 3pm with Warriors Pregame Live on CSN Bay Area, and streaming live right here.

Kevin Durant is expected back in the lineup when the Warriors begin one of the most demanding road trips in franchise history Monday in Philadelphia, where they play the struggling 76ers at Wells Fargo Center.

With Durant out of the lineup for the first time on Saturday, the Warriors (49-9) were choppy on offense but held off the atrocious Nets at Oracle Arena. Having him back means will take a major stumble to feel any threat from the 76ers.

It’s the first of a seven-game “road trip” that includes a one-game interruption in Oakland. Six of the games are on consecutive nights.

After a brief resurgence behind young center Joel Embiid, the 76ers (22-36) are back to the scrapping and hoping to compete. They’ve been surprisingly tough to beat, winning four of their last six.


Warriors by 13.5


Zaza Pachulia vs. Jahlil Okafor: With Embiid out indefinitely and Nerlens Noel traded away, Okafor becomes Philly’s most imposing player. The center is coming off a 28-point effort against the Knicks. If he’s able to get in a rhythm, things could get dicey. That said, the Warriors have enough capable big men to keep Okafor under control. It begins with Pachulia.


Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L hand contusion) is listed as probable. C Damian Jones is on assignment with Santa Cruz of the NBA Development League.

76ers: G Jerryd Bayless (L wrist surgery), C Andrew Bogut (personal), C Joel Embiid (L knee contusion), F Ben Simmons (R foot fracture) and C/F Tiago Splitter (R calf strain) are listed as out.


Warriors: 8-2. 76ers: 4-6.


The Warriors have won six in a row and seven of the last eight. They have won the last three in Philadelphia.


EARLY LETHARGY: While the Warriors went through a light practice upon arrival in Philly on Sunday, they opted to sleep in rather than have the typical game-day shootaround Monday morning. This could affect the opening moments but is not likely to linger.

STEPH CHASES KOBE: Stephen Curry needs four 3-pointers to surpass Kobe Bryant and move into 11th place on the all-time list for triples. Curry currently has 1,824, while Bryant finished his career with 1,827.

WRAP IT UP: With this being the “easy” night of a back-to-back set (the Warriors travel to Washington Tuesday night to face the more formidable Wizards), the goal will be to take complete control of the game by the middle of the third quarter, thereby minimizing the minutes played by the regulars.

Giants now hoping Cueto arrives later this week

Giants now hoping Cueto arrives later this week

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — The Giants will go at least one more turn through the spring rotation without their top right-hander.

Johnny Cueto didn't arrive over the weekend, as hoped, but general manager Bobby Evans said Cueto is now expected in camp later this week. Cueto has missed the first two weeks while tending to his 71-year-old father, Domingo, who has been dealing with health problems. The Cuetos are trying to secure a visa for Domingo so he can come to the United States, and the Giants believe that process should be wrapped up in the next couple of days. 

While Cueto has missed workouts at Scottsdale Stadium and the early slate of Cactus League games, he has been throwing bullpen sessions in Boca Chica in the Dominican Republic. Cueto has faced Giants prospects during live BP sessions, too. 

"It's not the same as having Rags and Gardy's hands on you and facing big leaguers and pitching in games here," Evans said. "But there is a large percentage of value in what he's doing there. Based on our calculations, assuming this doesn't go much longer, he should be lined up for the start of the season."

Cueto's participation in the World Baseball Classic remains up in the air, and Evans said that while Cueto has communicated to the Dominican team that he may not be able to play, a final decision has not been made. The Dominican Republic is scheduled to open play on March 9 in Miami. The Giants have not yet told Cueto that he has to skip the event, but the timeline is starting to make the decision a no-brainer. Coaches and players surely would not be thrilled if Cueto showed up later this week and then immediately left to represent another team. Cueto had originally been scheduled to start multiple spring games before leaving for the WBC. 

Cueto's first regular season start will come April 4 at Chase Field in the second game of the season.