Sacramento Kings (15-24) at Memphis Grizzlies (24-13), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Memphis Grizzlies will try to prevent their season
high-tying losing streak from reaching four games Friday night in a showdown
with the Sacramento Kings at FedEx Forum.
The Grizzlies are mired in their second three-game slide of the season and
dropped a 103-82 decision against the San Antonio Spurs Wednesday in the Alamo
City. Rudy Gay, who missed Monday's loss to the Los Angeles Clippers to attend
his grandmother's funeral, led Memphis with 17 points and eight rebounds.
Marc Gasol scored 12 points and Zach Randolph and Tony Allen each finished
with 11 for the Grizzlies, who have lost three straight by double digits.
"Its just frustration right now," said Allen. "Obviously we're not playing
like we started off so its back to the drawing board."
Memphis' skid comes on the heels of a four-game winning streak. Known for
their tight defense, the Grizzlies seemed to have forgotten how to defend as
evidenced by their recent lackluster approach. Still, the Grizzlies are second
in the NBA in defense, allowing 90.4 ppg. They have failed to score 100 points
over the last three games and are 11-0 this season when doing so.
The Grizzlies have won 26 of their last 30 home games and will play five of
the next six games at FedEx Forum, where they are 14-5 this season. In injury
news for the Grizz, Randolph, who leads the NBA with 25 double-doubles, is
listed as questionable Friday due to a strained lower back.
Sacramento can match a season-best winning streak with a win tonight and has
won back-to-back contests since losing four straight.
The Kings, who will begin a three-game road trip and are only 3-14 as the
visitor, recorded a 95-94 triumph versus the Washington Wizards Wednesday at
Sleep Train Arena in the finale of a five-game homestand (2-3). Tyreke Evans'
free throw with 11.4 seconds left sealed the win for the Kings, and he joined
DeMarcus Cousins and John Salmons with 21 points on the night.
"We definitely made some big plays down the stretch," said Cousins, who pulled
down a game-best 16 rebounds and has scored 20 or more points in three of the
last four games. "It was a good effort, a great team effort. I am happy."
Jimmer Fredette scored all 12 of his points in the second half, while Evans
also had eight rebounds, eight assists, and three steals. Evans is averaging
14.4 ppg in his past five games.
Sacramento outscored Washington, 62-46, in the paint, making up for 18
turnovers that led to 21 points for the Wizards. The Kings shot 48.2 percent
for the game and last won three in a row from Dec. 5-8.
The Kings will also visit Charlotte and New Orleans, and will play three games
in four nights. They are just 1-9 on the road against teams from the West. In
other news, Cousins, Lakers center Dwight Howard and Warriors big man David
Lee are the only players averaging at least 17.0 ppg and 10.0 rpg this season.
Sacramento sustained a 113-81 home defeat to Memphis on Jan. 7 this season and
have lost five of six and 10 of the previous 14 meetings between the teams.
The Kings are winless in five straight and 13 of 16 games at the Grizzlies.
01/18 10:29:02 ET
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