EditorsNote: Minor edits throughout
Buddy Hield scored 26 points to lead seven Sacramento players in double figures as the visiting Kings clipped the San Antonio Spurs 113-106 on Sunday, completing a three-game sweep of the season series.
The Kings trailed 106-105 after San Antonio’s DeMar DeRozan hit a jumper with 2:53 to play. Sacramento responded with the final eight points of the game, capped by two free throws by Hield with 16.7 seconds left, to snap a two-game losing streak.
The Spurs are already guaranteed a spot in the postseason for the 22nd straight season, tying the NBA record. San Antonio has five regular-season games remaining — three on the road — and holds onto seventh place in the Western Conference standings despite the defeat.
Willie Cauley-Stein added 17 points for the Kings, with Bogdan Bogdanovic and Harrison Barnes scoring 15 each, De’Aaron Fox hitting for 12 points, and Nemanja Bjelica and Yogi Ferrell pumping in 10 points apiece. Kosta Koufos led the Kings with 11 rebounds.
LaMarcus Aldridge paced the Spurs with 27 points and 18 rebounds. Rudy Gay scored 18, DeRozan added 16, and Bryn Forbes and Marco Belinelli hit for 15 and 14 points, respectively, in the loss.
Sacramento has been eliminated from the playoffs for the 13th consecutive campaign. That put the Kings in the role of spoiler to keep San Antonio from moving up in the playoff pecking order, and Sacramento played like it had nothing to lose.
San Antonio led by as many as 10 points on three different occasions in the first quarter as Aldridge scored 18 of the Spurs’ 30 points in the period.
The Kings rallied in the second quarter, taking a six-point advantage on Fox’s jumper at the 5:35 mark of the period. Sacramento led 58-57 at halftime behind 11 points from Hield in the first two quarters.
Aldridge led all scorers with 20 points at the half while Gay added 12 and Belinelli hit for 10.
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich was not around for his team’s dismal 19-point fourth quarter after being ejected from the game for arguing with an official in the third quarter.
—Field Level Media