Final - 2OT
  for this game

Martin, Kings send Knicks to fifth straight loss

Nov 17, 2007 - 7:48 AM SACRAMENTO, California (Ticker) -- Kevin Martin and the Sacramento Kings sent the struggling New York Knicks to yet another road loss.

Martin scored a career-high 43 points and Ron Artest added 28 and his usual stellar defense as the Kings outlasted the Knicks, 123-118, in double overtime at Arco Arena on Friday night.

Brad Miller had 12 points and 11 rebounds for Sacramento, which had better execution in the extra periods en route to the victory.

"It always feels good with a win," Martin said of his career high. "Last year, I had 40 but we lost, so it didn't feel good. Tonight feels a lot better."

With the second overtime becoming a free-throw shooting contest, Martin - who entered the game shooting 85 percent from the line - missed both foul shots with 26.7 seconds left and his team grasping to a three-point lead.

But David Lee, who collected season highs with 24 points and 16 rebounds, failed to box out Artest, who tipped the rebound to John Salmons. The Kings guard was then fouled and hit 1-of-2 free throws to make it 117-113 with 17 seconds left.

"That was big," Martin said. "It gave us another opportunity to get some breathing room. Ron played tremendous tonight on both ends. He just led us."

"You gotta have it," coach Reggie Theus added. "Those are winning plays. Mikki Moore takes a charge in the thick of things. Those are winning plays. Aside from everything else, it's nice to have Ron back."

Martin, who shot 11-of-21 from the field and 16-of-19 from the line, then nailed four more free throws on the Kings' next two possessions - sending the Knicks to their fifth straight loss after starting the season 2-1."

"Last year, I was calling (Martin) an All-Star, this year I'm calling him first team," Artest said of his teammate - the NBA's fourth-leading scorer entering Friday's play.

"We needed a game like that to get our confidence rolling as a team," Martin said. "We let one go down the stretch (at Minnesota) and tonight we just had to pull it out."

New York has lost the first three games in a tough four-game West Coast trip and will finish the jaunt at Denver on Saturday. However, it nearly picked up the trip's first victory in regulation and the first overtime in this wild contest.

"We're close, but we're not there," Knicks coach Isiah Thomas said. "It's a team-wide failure. We had plenty of opportunities to win the basketball game. We missed our opportunities - layups, free throws, turnovers - you name it, we did it.

"But at least we're getting into position to have those opportunities. It's frustrating to lose this way, but we've got to keep working at it."

Artest nailed a 3-pointer to give the Kings a 107-104 lead with 1:33 left in overtime. Jamal Crawford then tied it for New York, converting a three-point play with 1:25 left.

Lee then got the Knicks a chance to pick up the victory in the first extra period, taking a charge on Salmons' drive with 35 seconds left.

But Lee could not win it as his follow shot on Crawford's missed jumper rolled off the rim as time expired - sending the game to double overtime. Ironically, a rebound on another miss by Crawford was instrumental in sending the game to extra time in the first place.

"It's one of those things," Lee said. "It was just unfortunate that we didn't capitalize on those three chances that we normally hit. It just didn't fall - Jamal's shot or my tip."

Not known for his rebounding prowess, Eddy Curry snatched an offensive board when Crawford's jumper fell short and layed the ball in to tie the game at 97-97 with 9.9 seconds left in regulation.

After a timeout, Francisco Garcia missed a contested 3-pointer, allowing New York to call a timeout of its own with 1.9 ticks left and set up one final play. On the final possession of regulation, Curry missed a point-blank layup as time expired.

Curry collected 27 points and nine rebounds and Stephon Marbury added 15 off the bench for New York, which played without forward Zach Randolph. The high-scoring performer was attending his grandmother's funeral.

"I think we're getting better as a team," Curry said. "It's just those little plays in a game that you don't think are a big deal that end up costing us at the end."

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