NBA Game Summary - Sacramento at Charlotte
(Friday, February 22nd)
Final Score: Sacramento 116, Charlotte 115 (OT)
Charlotte, NC (Sports Network) - Francisco Garcia scored 23 points on 6-of-8 shooting and Ron Artest had the go-ahead bucket as the Sacramento Kings squeaked past the Charlotte Bobcats, 116-115, in overtime.
Brad Miller had 22 points, 14 rebounds and one nearly costly turnover for the Kings, who have won three straight. Artest went for 20 points, nine rebounds and four assists, while Beno Udrih scored 17 to go with eight rebounds and six assists before fouling out.
Jason Richardson led Charlotte with 29 points, but he was locked down by Artest in the overtime period, and the Bobcats fell for the ninth time in 10 outings.
Charlotte also lost leading scorer Gerald Wallace, who took an elbow to the face from Kings center Mikki Moore early in the third quarter and did not return. Wallace initially laid face-down on the floor for more than 10 minutes before being carted off on a stretcher. He was taken to nearby Presbyterian Hospital, where he was diagnosed with a concussion while other tests were performed.
Late Friday night, it was confirmed the Wallace had sustained a Grade 3 concussion and had been knocked unconscious by the blow from Moore. He experienced a slight case of amnesia while at the hospital, but tests revealed no fracture or bleeding, and he was back in his home by the end of the night.
"I don't think Mikki Moore was making a malicious play," said Bobcats head coach Sam Vincent. "I think he was just trying to clear space and get in the middle. He had his elbows high, and Gerald was close on defense. He just caught him with a nasty elbow."
The Bobcats had a 114-112 lead with less than two minutes to go in OT before Richardson's airball was caught by Miller, who threw a gorgeous outlet pass for a leaking Kevin Martin and an easy lay-in that tied the game.
Artest buried a 20-footer the next trip down the floor to put the Kings back up two, and Charlotte called a timeout with 11.4 seconds on the clock.
Raymond Felton beat Udrih off the dribble and dished to Emeka Okafor for a dunk, but a foul was called on Udrih before the pass. Felton then missed the first free throw, and after he hit the second, the Bobcats looked like they would need to foul to stop the clock.
Charlotte attempted to foul Miller, but the Kings big man tried to make a pass at the last second. It was deflected by Felton, and as Miller was being pulled down by Bobcats rookie Jared Dudley, the ball hit off his hand and went out of bounds with 3.6 ticks remaining.
That gave Charlotte one final opportunity to win it, but Felton's baseline fadeaway went begging, and the Kings narrowly escaped with the win.
Martin finished with 15 points despite shooting just 1-for-8 from the floor, as he made 13 of his 18 free-throw attempts.
"Until tonight, I thought we played at a very high caliber of basketball, a very focused caliber of basketball," Kings coach Reggie Theus said. "Tonight I thought we got away from that a little bit."
Felton had 17 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds for Charlotte, while Okafor scored 12 to go with his seven boards.
Artest drew a double team in the post and kicked for Udrih, who buried a three from the top of the key for a 106-100 Kings lead with less than a minute remaining in regulation.
But then Sacramento left the door open by missing free throws. First Udrih missed one of two, and Martin did the same with 25 ticks on the clock. With Garcia right in his face, Richardson buried a fadeaway three to trim the lead to 108-107, and Miller clanged the first of two free throws at the other end.
That allowed Charlotte to go for the tie with a two-point bucket, and Felton did so easily, going coast to coast for a lay-in with 11 seconds left.
Out of a timeout, the Kings couldn't find a high-percentage look, as Martin picked up his dribble and was forced to fire a contested baseline fallaway, which missed badly, resulting in overtime.
Richardson had 10 first-quarter points, but the Kings used a late spurt to take a 28-25 lead into the second. Charlotte took a short-lived two-point lead late in the half on Matt Carroll's triple before Udrih's three put the Kings back up 54-53, a count that held into the halftime break.
Artest's bucket with 6:23 to go in the third pushed the Kings lead to 67-60, and a little more than two minutes later Miller found Artest for an easy deuce that made it 74-64, the Kings' largest lead to that point.
It was 84-78 going to the fourth, but Charlotte stormed back to take an 87-86 lead on Felton's three-point play with just under nine minutes remaining.
The Kings answered with a 10-1 spurt, as Miller's mid-range jumper made it 96-91 with 5:01 left, but the Bobcats had one last run in them.
Sacramento shot 27-for-36 (75 percent) from the foul line, while the Bobcats went 32-for-45 (71.1.)...Wallace had six points, six rebounds, four assists and three blocked shots in 20-plus minutes before his injury...Kings guard John Salmons also left in the third quarter with a left thigh bruise, and did not return...Referee Joe Crawford left midway through the first with flu-like symptoms and did not return, forcing the game to continue with just two officials.
02/22 23:25:22 ET