NBA Game Summary - Houston at Sacramento
(Sunday, April 8th)
Final Score: Houston 112, Sacramento 106
Sacramento, CA (Sports Network) - Tracy McGrady didn't seem slowed by an ailing back Sunday night, as he poured in 40 points, pulled down eight rebounds and dished out 10 assists, leading Houston to a 112-106 win over the Kings.
McGrady, who didn't start the previous game due to a back injury, shot 14-of-28 from the field and 9-of-12 from the foul line, as the Rockets snapped a three-game skid and moved within a half-game of Utah for the fourth-best record in the Western Conference.
Yao Ming and Luther Head each added 18 points for Houston, which swept all three games from Sacramento this season.
"I think this game is very important considering that we're coming down to the last few games before we step foot into the playoffs," McGrady said. "We want to be an executing team before going into the playoffs. We don't want to wait too long to try to be that team in the playoffs."
Kevin Martin had 24 points and Francisco Garcia 16 for the Kings, who lost for the 13th time in 16 games.
"We were more aggressive in the first half and in the second half I thought they made tough shots when the clock was running down," Garcia said. "I think we played pretty good, we just couldn't close it out."
Houston scored the final seven points of the third for an 81-80 lead and the Rockets took control in the fourth.
Head's three-pointer moved the Rockets up for good at 92-89 with 6:40 left. That was the start of an 11-2 spurt, finished by a Shane Battier layup. Head had a pair of shots from beyond the arc in the flurry.
The Kings were able to get within four points, the last time at 108-104 on a John Salmons layup with 19.2 seconds left. However, Rafer Alston hit two foul shots to seal Houston's win.
The Kings led 24-21 after the opening quarter and were ahead by as many as 12 in the second before settling for a 57-50 cushion at the break.
Shareef Abdur-Rahim had 15 points for the Kings, who went 11-of-30 from three- point range...Martin set a Sacramento era record for most free throws made in a season (461).
04/09 00:55:51 ET