Kings

Kings ice cold from field in 96-88 loss to Suns

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Kings ice cold from field in 96-88 loss to Suns

BOX SCORE

PHOENIX (AP) -- Falling behind has become a habit for the Phoenix Suns. In the last three games, so has winning.Steve Nash had 19 points, Marcin Gortat scored 14 and matched his season high with 17 rebounds, and the Suns won their third in a row with a 96-88 victory over the Sacramento Kings on Sunday night.In all three wins, the Suns rallied from double-digit deficits, something the franchise hadn't done since November 2002.Jared Dudley scored eight of his 14 in the fourth quarter, when Phoenix pulled away. Shannon Brown added 13, including consecutive 3-pointers in the decisive run to open the final period.Marcus Thornton scored 23 and Tyreke Evans 17 for Sacramento. DeMarcus Cousins added 16 points and 14 rebounds, but the Kings shot just 33 percent in the second half to fall to 4-19 on the road.The three consecutive victories since the All-Star break, all at home, matched Phoenix's longest win streak of the season.Nash said the team's first-half struggles trace to its long layoff during the break."We had seven days off, a lot longer than a lot of people," he said, "and I just feel like we're still trying to shake the rust off in the first half of games. We feel a little better, a little more comfortable and make more plays in the second half."Overall, the Suns have won five of six."We still aren't starting great, but at least we are not starting ridiculously slow," Gortat said. We don't have this outstanding pace that we usually have in the third quarter, but we're getting better."Brown's 3s, followed by one from Dudley, capped a 15-3 Suns outburst to start the fourth quarter and Phoenix led 85-74 with 7:45 remaining. Sacramento scored the next eight to cut it to 85-82 on Cousins' dunk from the baseline with 3:32 to play.Nash, though, followed with his second 3 of the night in as many tries to boost the lead back to 88-82. The teams traded baskets, then Evans sank a 12-footer to slice the lead to 90-86 with 2:29 to go. Grant Hill made a pair of mid-range jumpers and Dudley's 18-footer with 51.4 seconds left sealed it."I think the thing that killed us was Shannon Brown, those 3s that he hit," Evans said. "After that we could never really find a rhythm."Sacramento coach Keith Smart praised his team's defense."You're going to give up something," he said. "You've got a great point guard who's going to make plays and find people. I thought our guys did a great job to maintain and do the things necessary, but we had a few breakdowns late."Phoenix coach Alvin Gentry liked the Suns' defense, too."But we didn't come up with the loose balls," he said. "We were right there defensively but we just need to complete the defensive possession."The Kings took a 32-29 lead after one quarter, then opened the second with a 10-2 run to go up 42-31 on Isaiah Thomas' 16-footer with 9:15 left in the half. Phoenix cut it to 48-44 on Nash's runner in the lane with 2:24 to go and was down 52-47 at the break.Cousins had 12 points and 10 rebounds in the first half but managed only four points and four rebounds after that. He finished 7 of 20 from the field, 1 of 4 after halftime.Phoenix caught the Kings at 52-all with 9:59 to play when Cousins was called for a flagrant foul for throwing an elbow into Channing Frye on a layup attempt. Frye made both free throws.Sacramento took a 61-59 lead on Evans' three-point play, but the Suns scored the next nine. Nash made a left-handed layup, was fouled by Evans and completed the three-point play to put the Suns ahead 68-61 with 4:01 left in the third quarter.The Kings outscored Phoenix 10-2 the rest of the quarter, though. Travis Outlaw blocked Sebastian Telfair's shot, then dunked the rebound at the other end of the court at the buzzer to give Sacramento a 71-70 lead entering the fourth.NOTES: The Suns played their sixth in a row at home, dating to before the All-Star break, and are in a stretch of 10 of 11 at US Airways Center. ... Thomas, who had averaged 17.1 points in seven games since becoming a starter, scored eight on 3-of-13 shooting. ... Referee Tre Maddox called a technical on Gentry in the second quarter. ... Sacramento got a technical on its second delay-of-game warning with 9:56 to play. ... Frye shot 3 of 12 for Phoenix. His backup at power forward, Markieff Morris, was 0 of 7.

Report: Kings meeting with former Magic, Warriors exec

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AP

Report: Kings meeting with former Magic, Warriors exec

In their search for Scott Perry's replacement, the Kings have spoken with the former GM of the Orlando Magic.

Otis Smith, who served as the Magic GM from 2006 to 2012, reportedly met with the Kings about their recently-vacated VP of basketball operations job.

News of the meeting for was first reported by ESPN.

Perry left the Kings this month to become the GM of the Knicks.

Smith has ties to Northern California. As a player, Smith's rights were sold by the Nuggets to the Warriors in 1987. He played in 137 games over two seasons with the Warriors.

After his playing days were over, Smith joined the Warriors' front office as the executive director of basketball operations.

Currently, Smith is the director of player development and an assistant coach for the Detroit Pistons.

Report: Deal in China for ex-Kings guard worth more than his NBA minimum

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AP

Report: Deal in China for ex-Kings guard worth more than his NBA minimum

Jimmer Fredette is reportedly going back to China.

Fredette agreed to terms on a two-year deal with the Shanghai Sharks worth $1.8 million annually, according to David Pick.

Fredette has accrued five years of NBA service.

The minimum NBA salary for Fredette in 2017-18 would be...

$1,709,538.

The Kings selected Fredette with the 10th overall pick in the 2011 draft.

He averaged 7.6 points per game as a rookie and 7.2 points in Year 2.

Sacramento waived Fredette in February 2014.

Over 50 games with the Pelicans in 2014-15, he averaged 3.6 points per game and shot below 19 percent from deep.

He did not see any action against the Warriors in the opening round of the 2015 playoffs.

In China last year, Fredette averaged 37.6 points and 8.2 rebounds per contest.

He scored 73 points on Feb. 19.