It’s a battle of Pacific Division teams on the hardwood in the capital city of California. The Phoenix Suns are on the road as they make the trip to face the Sacramento Kings Sunday night in the back half of a two-game set. Phoenix opened their season with a 106-102 home victory over Dallas Wednesday night in their season opener. Sacramento rallied to stun Denver 124-122 in overtime on the road Wednesday night as they began their season. These teams were in action Saturday night in Phoenix. Heading into that contest, the Suns owned a 137-97 edge in the all-time regular-season series. Last season, the teams split four meetings with the Kings taking a 114-103 road victory in the most recent matchup on January 7, 2020.
Phoenix Suns Try to Earn Road Win in Second Half of Back-to-Back
Phoenix picked up a home victory over Dallas in their season opener and now are logging the back half of their two-game set with the Kings here. The Suns split their two games with the Kings in Sacramento last season and look to maintain that momentum here. Against Dallas, Phoenix survived a back-and-forth contest as they managed to come up with the victory. The Suns led by one after the opening quarter, by eight at the half and by six after three quarters. Phoenix held a 12-point lead with 10:59 to play in the game only to see Dallas rally to tie the game at 100 with 1:56 to play. The Suns outscored the Mavericks 6-2 down the stretch to get the victory.
In the contest, Phoenix shot 48.1 percent from the field, including 11 of 30 from three-point range, and controlled the boards by a 48-39 margin. The Suns overcame turning the ball over 19 times as they held the Mavericks to 42.4 percent shooting overall, including nine of 37 from beyond the arc. Devin Booker led the Suns with 22 points in the victory. Mikal Bridges contributed 18 points, Cameron Johnson added 15 off the bench and DeAndre Ayton finished with 13 points and eight rebounds in the victory. Cameron Payne and Langston Galloway each finished with 11 points off the bench in the contest. The Suns will look to get more from Chris Paul, who contributed eight points, four rebounds and five assists in 28 minutes while shooting only three of nine from the floor.
Sacramento Kings Look for Home Victory
Sacramento had a wild game with the Nuggets on the road in their opener but came back with a flourish late to stun Denver. The Kings now play the second game of their back-to-back home set here with the Suns and look to get a home win. Against Denver, Sacramento never led by more than eight or trailed by more than nine in the contest. The Kings trailed by six after one quarter and by seven at the half before taking a five-point lead after three quarters. Sacramento ended up in overtime, where they trailed by four in the final minute. The Kings cut the deficit to two late, tied the game with 6.5 seconds left and got a steal after that. Harrison Barnes was blocked in the final seconds only to have Buddy Hield hit a tip-in at the buzzer to give Sacramento the victory.
In the game, the Kings prevailed despite shooting 44.6 percent from the floor, including 10 of 31 from three-point range, en route to the win. Sacramento held a 53-45 edge on the glass, including collecting 17 offensive rebounds. Hield led the Kings with 22 points in the victory. De’Aaron Fox (seven assists) and Barnes (nine rebounds) each had 21 points in the contest while Cory Joseph kicked in 15 points off the bench. Marvin Bagley III chipped in 13 points plus nine rebounds, Tyrese Haliburton had 12 in his NBA debut and Nemanja Bjelica added 10 off the bench. Sacramento got double-digit points from seven of the nine players that saw action but would like to get more from big men Richaun Holmes and Hassan Whiteside.