Salmons' heroics in third OT lift Kings past WarriorsJan 15, 2009 - 8:39 AM By Ryan Leong PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
OAKLAND, California (Ticker) -- It took three overtimes and a desperation baseline jumper by John Salmons with 1.6 seconds left for the Sacramento Kings to end their road woes.
Salmons finished with 25 points and 14 rebounds and Brad Miller had a season-high 30 and 22 as the Kings posted a wild 135-133 triple-overtime victory over the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday.
"Our guys played really hard tonight," Kings interim coach Kenny Natt said. "We came out and we played defense. Obviously, they made some tough shots. They're a very good offensive team but I'm so pleased with the way we hung in there defensively and we rebounded and executed. It was one of the first times I've seen in a late game situations where we executed and got what we wanted."
"It was great for just the team overall," Salmons said. "It was a good win for us and a good way to win to give us some momentum for the rest of the season and it was good for the fans watching on TV."
Jamal Crawford scored 35 points and C.J. Watson added a career-high 26 for the Warriors, who haven't won consecutive games in over a month thanks in part to an injury-depleted lineup.
"Well, the free throws did us in tonight," said Warriors coach Don Nelson, whose team was just 25-of-41 (61 percent) from the foul line.
"Both ways they were making them and we were missing them. That's the bottom line and the inability for us to get loose balls, we were there and we always lost them. There were a lot of good things and a lot of mistakes made on both sides I'm sure. Bottom line is the free throws did us in tonight."
Sacramento posted its first road victory since November 19, losing its previous 12 games away from Arco Arena.
"It's just good to get a win, period. Road or home, just (win) period," Salmons said. "We're just trying to get wins and hopefully this can help us for the rest of the season."
In the third overtime, Crawford made a terrific assist on an alley-oop layup by Ronny Turiaf, but Kevin Martin made both free throws after he was fouled to keep it tied at 133-133.
After a missed shot by Martin with the shot clock winding down, Salmons corralled the rebound and made a desperation shot from the baseline.
"I was in the corner and where I shot it is where I went for the rebound and it bounced right where I was at and I was in front of the two Warriors players running for the ball," Salmons said. "I was right in the middle of it and we were both scrambling and somehow I got it and God did the rest. I just knew time was running and I was trying to get it off. So once I got it, everything kind of slowed down and I shot it regular and it went in."
The Warriors called a timeout as the Kings' players celebrated before Kelenna Azubuike missed a long 3-pointer as Sacramento escaped with its second win in three games.
"You just try to play through the adrenaline," Azubuike said. "Your body is tired but your adrenaline keeps you going and we just couldn't finish it off tonight. Everybody played hard tonight, it was just a tough game.
"We made a couple of mistakes but they beat us. ... They hit a lot of big shots but it could've gone either way so what can you do?"
Before the extra periods, Crawford peeled off a screen by Andris Biedrins and made an 18-foot jumper to tie the game at 103-103 with 61 ticks left. After a missed shot by Miller, Corey Maggette was fouled trying to drive the lane.
Normally a high-percentage free-throw shooter, he missed both foul shots but, luckily for Golden State, Azubuike was fouled getting the rebound and made both free throws to put the Warriors up with 31 seconds to play.
On the Kings' ensuing possession, Martin took control after a stutter step and drove through the lane with a two-handed slam, retying it at 105-105 with 22 seconds remaining. Crawford then missed a potential game-winning shot in the waning seconds.
Biedrins and Maggette both fouled out early in the first overtime and Watson did the same in the second for the Warriors, who were already playing without four regulars.
"Jamal Crawford played 60 minutes tonight. And he continued to play," Maggette said. "C.J. Watson and Azubuike did a great job. Everyone came in and stepped up when me and (Biedrins) were out and then C.J. fouled out. But they continued to press on and we made some key plays down the stretch.
"But towards the end, it wasn't in our favor when they made those shots but you've got to be happy with our young guys and the fans should be extremely happy that they still continued to play even though we lost."
Golden State forced a second overtime when Azubuike connected from the arc with nine seconds left, tying the game at 115-115.
Martin was the hero in the second extra session, making a 3-pointer with six seconds remaining to knot the contest at 127-127. The Warriors could have fouled Martin before the shot to preserve at least a one-point lead but chose not to.
"It felt great because that's something where it doesn't usually go our way," Martin said. "And for us to get a break like that and to get another chance, the team responded well to that and that's what we needed to do in the second and third overtime."
GOLDEN STATE 133 FINAL IN 3RD OT
Jan 15 1:53 AM
GOLDEN STATE 127 End 1ST OT, GOING INTO 2ND OT
Jan 15 1:38 AM
GOLDEN STATE 115 End 1ST OT, GOING INTO 2ND OT
Jan 15 1:18 AM
GOLDEN STATE 77 END, 3RD QTR
Jan 15 12:19 AM
GOLDEN STATE 48 HALFTIME
Jan 14 11:37 PM
GOLDEN STATE 20 END, 1ST QTR
Jan 14 11:06 PM
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