SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Ron Artest missed the Sacramento
Kings' game against Washington on Thursday night because of sore
Artest was a surprise omission from the Kings' lineup moments
before they took the floor against the Wizards. Artest, averaging
16.4 points and 7.2 rebounds in his first full season in
Sacramento, missed four games earlier in the season with lower-back
John Salmons took Artest's spot in the starting lineup.
The Kings lost Artest on the same night that leading scorer
Kevin Martin returned from an injury absence with a sprained ankle.
Sacramento had lost eight of its last 10 games to fall three games