The Sacramento Kings are fresh off their biggest win of the season and look to ride the momentum when they host the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday. The Kings halted a nine-game road slide by recording a 110-106 victory over the Golden State Warriors on Monday - their first victory in Oakland since March 2013.
Sacramento shot 53.2 percent from the field - the first Golden State opponent to shoot better than 50 percent this season - and got a huge performance from backup center Willie Cauley-Stein, who scored 19 points on 8-of-9 shooting and also registered eight rebounds and six assists. The 24-year-old is displaying signs of emerging as an offensive player by scoring 18 or more points in four of the past six games, including a season-high 26 against the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday. Milwaukee split the first two contests of a four-game road excursion, while All-Star small forward Giannis Antetokounmpo was highly disturbed during Saturday’s 121-108 loss to the Utah Jazz, even getting into a heated argument with assistant coach Sean Sweeney. “We’ve just got to play harder, put more effort into it,” Antetokounmpo told reporters afterward. “If you get frustrated, there’s no point.”
TV: 10 p.m. ET, FSN Wisconsin (Milwaukee), NBCSN California (Sacramento)
ABOUT THE BUCKS (9-9): Antetokounmpo continued his MVP-caliber campaign with 27 points and 13 rebounds against the Jazz for his 16th 20-point outing and ninth double-double of the season. Antetokounmpo ranks second in the NBA in scoring (29.5) and his all-around standout stats include averages of 10.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 1.8 blocked shots and 1.5 steals. Guard Malcolm Brogdon, the NBA Rookie of the Year last season, has taken well to a reserve role since the acquisition of Eric Bledsoe, and scored 19 points and matched his career high of four 3-pointers in the Utah contest.
ABOUT THE KINGS (6-14): Sacramento’s nine road losses are by an average of 19.6 points and includes an embarrassing 46-point loss to the Atlanta Hawks, one of three NBA teams with a worse record than the Kings. So even with All-Stars Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant out of the Golden State lineup, it was still a milestone victory for the struggling team to win in the home building of a longtime nemesis. “It’s good for confidence,” Sacramento coach Dave Joerger told reporters after the win. “They don’t lose in here very often, no matter what. ... It’s a feather in (our) hat for sure.”
1. The Bucks swept last season’s two meetings by an average of 22 points.
2. Sacramento rookie G Frank Mason III scored a season-best 14 points against the Warriors and has reached double digits in four of the past five games.
3. Milwaukee SG Khris Middleton tallied only nine points on 4-of-15 shooting against Utah after scoring 40 points three nights earlier against the Phoenix Suns - his second effort of 40 or more points this season.
PREDICTION: Bucks 105, Kings 103