PHOENIX (AP) -- The Sacramento Kings' up-and-down season started
Chris Webber had a season-high 28 points and 10 rebounds, and
Sacramento shook off its worst loss of the early season and beat
the Suns 113-111 Saturday night.
The Kings lost by 30 points at Seattle on Wednesday night,
staggering to a 1-4 start.
But they looked more like last season's 55-win playoff team this
game, taking charge late in the third quarter and holding off
Phoenix's desperate rally in the fourth. Webber, who had 11 points
against Seattle, felt like the old order was close to being
"The way we were in a groove, we just saw it coming," he said.
"We have been wanting to get this type of energy and communication
on the court."
Peja Stojakovic matched his season high with 23 points, Mike
Bibby scored 20 and Brad Miller had six of his 14 points in the
final quarter, which Sacramento entered with an 88-82 lead.
"They are a really, really tough team to guard, but we played
so much better tonight offensively than we have been," Kings coach
Rick Adelman said. "I was really pleased to get this one on the
The Kings return to Sacramento, where they had their only other
victory, for their next five games, and Webber believes that will
take care of questions about the shaky beginning.
The Kings used a 16-5 run that began late in the third quarter
to go ahead 100-87 on a layup by Stojakovic with 8:03 left in the
But Nash, who beat his previous season best by 12 points, got
the Suns within 108-106 with a 15-foot jumper with 1:37 to go, and
tightened it to 110-109 with a 3-pointer with 45 seconds remaining.
Miller then made an 18-footer after an assist from Bibby with 25
seconds to go. Twelve seconds later, Bobby Jackson fouled
Stoudemire hard enough on his layup attempt that he missed and got
only the two free throws.
After a free throw by Doug Christie with 13 seconds left, Marion
missed a 12-footer and Johnson missed from 14 feet after the ball
squirted out of a throng in the paint.
"We turned the ball over too many times (17), and that would be
the main thing," Stoudemire said. "They got a lot of easy baskets
in transition as well, so that was tough for us. But we fought back
pretty strongly, and we had a good chance at it."
The Suns had a 58-57 lead at halftime, and no more than six
points separated the teams during a tight third quarter that
featured seven lead changes and four ties.
The Kings began to pull away when Darius Songaila broke a 78-all
tie with a reverse layup after his first shot was blocked by Steven
Bibby scored the last four points of the third quarter on a
19-footer and two free throws, producing an 82-78 Sacramento lead,
and it became a 10-0 run on consecutive baskets by Webber, Jackson
The Suns took a 45-36 lead -- their biggest of the game -- on
Jacobsen's foul shot with 8:49 left in the second quarter.
But Miller and Jackson had six points each as Sacramento
outscored the Suns 21-8 in the next 6:14.
"Our whole game we felt was in our first half," Suns coach
Mike D'Antoni said. "We let them have at least seven layups by
outrunning us back. You can't do that against a team like this."
Phoenix regained the lead before halftime on a 3-pointer by Nash
and Johnson's layup with 30 seconds to go.
The Kings, who play Denver at home Sunday night, are 2-1 in
the first game of back-to-backs and 0-2 in the second. ... Suns C
Jake Voskuhl didn't play because of the flu. ... The Kings, second
in the NBA in points allowed (102.4) coming in, have given up at
least 101 points in each of five road games.