The Sacramento Kings are looking to build on a last-second victory. A home date with the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday night could help them do just that.
The Kings (19-24) and the Bobcats (18-27) are meeting for the first time this season, and the home team has won all six matchups in the all-time series. Sacramento, though, has outscored Charlotte by an average of 16.7 points in dominating three games at Arco Arena, including a 135-120 victory on Feb. 28 - the last meeting there.
Kevin Martin engineered that win with 36 points before scoring 26 in a 111-108 loss at Charlotte on March 14 as the Kings settled for a split in the season series.
Martin, the team leader with a career-high 24.4 points per game, was a big part of Sacramento's 103-101 victory at Seattle on Sunday, clinching the win with a 20-footer as time expired after racing the length of the court. The Kings avoided going winless on their three-game road trip and extended the SuperSonics' franchise-record losing streak to 14 games.
"Nobody wanted to go into overtime," said Martin, who had 26 points. "We just wanted to get this over with and get back to (Sacramento) as early as possible."
While the Bobcats have one of the league's worst road records at 4-13, the Kings are opening a five-game homestand looking to improve on their 12-9 mark at Arco. They have won four of their last five games there by averaging 117.5 points on 51.5 percent shooting.
This is just the second home game for Mike Bibby, who missed the first 36 games of the season with a thumb injury. The point guard is averaging 14.4 points and 4.3 assists in seven games since returning. He has excelled in the last two home meetings with Charlotte, totaling 55 points on 18-for-25 shooting - 11-for-15 from 3-point range.
The Bobcats, meanwhile, are coming off their best shooting performance on the road this season, making 56.7 percent from the floor to beat the Los Angeles Clippers 107-100 on Monday.
That display, which came in the opener of a five-game western road swing, came after coach Sam Vincent publicly questioned his team's desire and passion after a 103-96 loss to Philadelphia on Saturday.
"The effort was there, the passion was there, the teamwork was there," Bobcats forward Gerald Wallace said. "Everybody played well. We passed the ball, we found open guys and knocked down shots. We were aggressive on defense and we forced the Clippers out of what they wanted to do with some of their key guys missing."
Wallace, who leads Charlotte with 21.4 points per game, went 8-for-11 from the field as he finished with 23 points, eight assists and six rebounds. He shot 4-for-17 on Saturday.
Wallace had 31 points and nine assists in the Bobcats' last visit to Sacramento.
Copyright 2007 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited