NBA Gameday: On six-game skid, Kings host Wall, Wizards

NBA Gameday: On six-game skid, Kings host Wall, Wizards

SACRAMENTO -- The Sacramento Kings return home after a brief two-game road trip. They are in desperate need of a win after losing six straight. They’ll host the Washington Wizards on Friday night on the first night of a rare home-and-home back-to-back.

Sacramento led the San Antonio Spurs by as many as 28 points in the first half Wednesday evening at the AT&T Center, but the home team pulled off the improbable comeback. Rookie Skal Labissiere put on a show, scoring a career-high 15 points and grabbing six rebounds in just 15 minutes of action in the loss.

The last time these two teams faced off, the Wizards came into the night just 5-10 on the season. Since that meeting, Washington, led by the dynamic backcourt of John Wall and Bradley Beal, have gone an impressive 34-14 and they currently sit as the three seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race.

OPENING LINE

Wizards by 8

MATCHUP TO WATCH

Tyreke Evans vs. Otto Porter -- Evans is coming off his best game since rejoining the Kings at the All-Star Break. The 27-year-old wing scored 26 points and handed out four assists in 29 minutes starting at the small forward spot. Porter is having a breakout season in Washington, averaging a career-best 14 points and 6.6 rebounds while shooting an NBA best 45.3 percent from behind the arc.

WHERE THEY STAND

Kings: 25-39, third place in Pacific

Wizards: 39-24, first place in Southeast

INJURY REPORT

Kings: SG Malachi Richardson (right hamstring partial tear) out, F Rudy Gay (torn left Achilles) out for season.

Wizards: No injuries to report.

SERIES HISTORY

Washington holds a 1-0 advantage over the Kings after knocking off Sacramento 101-95 in late November at the Verizon Center. The Kings hold a 104-89 advantage all-time over the Wizards and a 31-30 lead during the Sacramento-era.

QUOTE

“I was mad that we didn’t get to sign him back. I’m still a little salty about it sometimes. That’s a great friend, that’s somebody you always want in your locker room. You always want a guy like that who bonds well with everybody, who’s a leader, who is vocal, leads by example, works hard and is a true professional both on and off the floor.” -Bradley Beal on former teammate Garrett Temple

Instant Replay: Kings close game on 22-3 run, stun Clippers

Instant Replay: Kings close game on 22-3 run, stun Clippers

BOX SCORE

Wins are getting harder to come by for the Sacramento Kings. On Sunday afternoon, they battled all the way down the stretch and it looked like they were headed for a fifth straight loss. And then Buddy Hield and his young teammates fought back to shock the Los Angeles Clippers by a final of 98-97.

Hield caught fire late, scoring 11 of his 15 points in a wild outburst during the fourth quarter. The Kings shooting guard added seven rebounds and brought his team back with a steal and pair of 3-pointers late.

Willie Cauley-Stein hit the glass hard, grabbing 14 rebounds while scoring eight points at the center position. His bucket with 1.8 seconds remaining proved to be the game-winner.

Darren Collison went to work against his former Clipper teammates. The veteran point guard went in attack mode early, knocking down his first eight shots. He finished the night with 19 points on 8-for-11 shooting and four assists.

Anthony Tolliver sat in the corner and waited for the kick out from his teammates. The result was a 5-for-6 shooting night from long range and a solid 15-point performance.

Georgios Papagiannis came off the bench to support Cauley-Stein in the pivot and continued to show improvement. The rookie 7-footer out of Greece altered plenty of shots in his 21 minutes on the floor and finished the night with 12 points, four rebounds and four assists.

Tyreke Evans started at the small forward spot and chipped in eight points and four rebounds and Ben McLemore added eight points in limited minutes.

The Clippers stars shined brightly Sunday at the Staples Center. Chris Paul set up his teammates from start to finished, dropping in 17 points and dishing out nine assists in the loss.

DeAndre Jordan went for 20 points and 11 rebounds. Blake Griffin shot 6-for-11 from the field for 17 points added six rebounds and Austin Rivers hit 2-for-7 from deep to finish with 10 points.

STANDOUT PERFORMER:
Hield was the hero. He struggled for the first three quarters, but came up big in the fourth to push his team over the top.

TURNING POINT:
Cauley-Stein grabbed a rebound and put it back in with 1.8 seconds remaining and Sacramento held on for the huge win.

INJURY UPDATE:
Ty Lawson was a late scratch with a knee issue and both Arron Afflalo and Kosta Koufos sat for scheduled rest. Rookie Malachi Richardson is officially out for the season with a right hamstring thickness tear. Rudy Gay is out for the year with a torn left Achilles.

WHAT'S NEXT:
Following the game in Los Angeles, the Kings hopped a plane back to Sacramento where they’ll face the Memphis Grizzlies Monday night at Golden 1 Center.

Source: Kings shutting down rookie Richardson for season

Source: Kings shutting down rookie Richardson for season

It’s better to be safe than sorry. The Sacramento Kings have chosen the cautious approach to one of their young players. CSN California has confirmed that the team is shutting down rookie Malachi Richardson for the remainder of the season.

Richardson, 21, suffered a partial tear of the right hamstring on February 15 and was listed as out 4-6 weeks. While the wing has not incurred a setback, he will need the entire six weeks to heal, which places him ready to return to action with just a handful of games remaining in the schedule.

Instead of pushing Richardson back into action, the focus is now on making sure the first round selection is ready for a full slate of summer events, including Las Vegas Summer League in July.

Through 22 games, Richardson posted 3.6 points and 1.0 rebounds in 9.0 minutes per game for Sacramento this season.

CSN’s Kayte Christensen was first to break the news.