SACRAMENTO, Calif., Jan. 28 (Ticker) --
The Sacramento Kings missed
more than the Utaz Jazz did Jerry Sloan.
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scored 29 points and grabbed 10 rebounds as the Jazz
snapped a seven-game losing streak against the Pacific
Division-leading Kings, 102-92.
added 20 points and nine assists for Utah, which
played the final 38 1/2 minutes without coach Sloan, who was
ejected for shoving referee Courtney Kirkland after Kings guard
was not whistled for stepping out of bounds in
front of the Jazz bench.
Utah played the remainder of the game under assistant Phil
Johnson, who coached the Kings on two separate occasions in the
1970s and 1980s.
"(Sloan) questioned a call and (Kirkland) threw him out of the
game," Johnson said. "I'm never surprised with anything that
happens in the game; the game is very emotional and things
happen. When he leaves, we have to carry on."
Sacramento dominated the latter stages of the first quarter and
took a 32-23 advantage into the second period. But Webber, who
was selected as a reserve to the Western Conference All-Star
squad, turned his left ankle landing on Scott Padgett
shot attempt with 10:45 left in the second quarter. He left the
game 12 seconds later and the Kings quickly lost their
"He was coming in, trying to back me down," Padgett said of
Webber. "I kind of tried to take the charge, he went up when I
went down and he fell. His foot landed right on my foot. I'm
sure that is when he hurt himself. I kind of heard him yell. I
figured he'd be going out of the game."
Utah took the lead for good, 36-35, on a jumper by Malone with
4:54 left in the half and extended its advantage to 53-40 at
the break. The Jazz outscored the Kings in the second quarter,
"I really think what happened is the last four or five minutes
we broke down defensively and gave them some easy
opportunities," Sacramento coach Rick Adelman said. "It went
from a four-point game - even though we weren't scoring, it was
still close until the end - and then suddenly a 13-point game.
That's just the way you're going to learn. You have to stay
mentally tough and not break down defensively."
"We didn't play aggressive," Kings forward Peja Stojakovic
"And when Chris got hurt in the second, we just fell apart.
"They are a very good team and very experienced. We tried to
make a run in the third quarter but I guess we didn't have
enough energy. I hope Chris' injury isn't serious and he's back
The Kings climbed within 76-71 entering the fourth quarter, but
the Jazz opened the period with a 16-3 run in the first 5 1/2
minutes. Sacramento got no closer than seven points thereafter.
"We struggled in the second quarter," Sacramento center Vlade
said. "We couldn't score points. We couldn't stop them.
They beat us by 20 in the second quarter. That pretty much
decided the game. In the third quarter we tired to come back
and we came close. We were only down by five points, but we
didn't have anything left."
Stojakovic scored 32 points and Mike Bibby
added 18 for
Sacramento, which shot just 40 percent (30-of-75) from the field
and allowed Utah to connect on 54 percent (43-of-79). The
Kings also were outrebounded by the Jazz, 43-30.
"Webb is a triple-double guy but we have shown that we can play
without him as a team," Christie said. "But ultimately, in the
long run, guys are going to have to step up in Webb's absence."
Kings backup center Scot Pollard
, who had played only five games
this season due to a stress fracture in his lower back, broke
the fourth metacarpal bone on his right hand in the third
quarter. He will be out six to eight weeks.
Utah snapped a three-game losing streak and handed Sacramento a
season high-tying third straight defeat. The Kings also lost
three in a row from November 3-6.
"It's tough to win here, and we were coming off of three tough
losses (to San Antonio, the Los Angeles Clippers and Golden
State), games we should have won," Padgett said. "It was a win
we needed to have. We have Portland tomorrow, Lakers, Dallas,
Golden State, who's hot right now, some tough games, so it was
key for us to get the win tonight."
"(Getting ejected) was a great move on coach Sloan's part,"
Stockton said. "We quite waiting and tried to compete better.
We have not been doing a great job of that. Somehow we turned
that around a little bit tonight."