SACRAMENTO, Calif., May 16 (Ticker) -- The good news for the Sacramento Kings is they forced a decisive seventh game. The bad news is their already thin rotation may be reduced.

Peja Stojakovic scored 22 points to lead a balanced attack as the Kings kept their season alive with a 104-87 triumph over the Minnesota Timberwolves in yet another intense battle in the Western Conference semifinals.

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Peja Stojakovic poured in 22 points in the Kings' Game 6 win.
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In the final minute of the third quarter, Kings guard Anthony Peeler swung his left elbow into the abdomen of Kevin Garnett, his former teammate, sending the MVP to the floor. Seconds later, Garnett retaliated by shouldering Peeler to the chest, and Peeler responded by elbowing Garnett to the jaw.

"They're extremely close," Minnesota coach Flip Saunders said. "They're the best of friends. I hope they still are. AP competes and goes hard. He hits KG, KG retaliates and AP throws a punch. I've had AP for eight years and I know he plays hard."

"I'm surprised that it was a little dirty," Garnett said. "I played with him a couple years, so I know what kind of player he is. It was surprising, but I wasn't going to let anybody just hit me. Never have, never will."

Both players received technical fouls, but Peeler - one of only seven Kings to see regular action - was ejected and likely faces a one-game suspension. The series concludes Wednesday in Minnesota.

"I haven't talked to Anthony yet," Kings coach Rick Adelman said. "I don't know why it happened, but you have to be cool. And it's going to be tough if he's suspended for this."

"It was retaliation after he hit me with an elbow," Peeler said. "It's always the guy that responds that is the one that gets suspended or ejected. So if I get suspended or ejected, I think that he should as well.

Peeler said they both were battling and both were out there for one goal - to win.

"If it comes to some form of confrontation, the sentence should be for both people," he added.

Timberwolves forward Gary Trent was pleased that Garnett kept his cool after getting elbowed in the face.

"KG understands the magnitude of what we're trying to accomplish," Trent said. "The most he would have gotten back was one or two punches. Unless you throw some Mike Tyson, one or two punches and are going to slide the guy across the court with your 1-2 punch, it ain't even worth it. He did the right thing."

Before the game, Sacramento center Brad Miller was fined $10,000 for directing an obscene gesture toward fans at the Target Center after he was ejected from Game Five following an altercation with Darrick Martin.

Latrell Sprewell, who made 6-of-7 3-pointers, scored 27 points and Garnett added 19 and 10 rebounds for Minnesota, which went on a 17-0 run in the first quarter to take a 28-19 lead.

The Timberwolves were in front, 37-31, with just under nine minutes left in the second quarter before the Kings ran off the next 12 points as part of a 26-7 burst to close the period.

Minnesota got no closer than six points thereafter.

High-energy Timberwolves point guard Sam Cassell, who continues to be hindered by back spasms, had 16 points on 7-of-11 shooting before fouling out with 2:32 remaining. He was assessed a technical for complaining after picking up his sixth foul.

"Sam is frustrated because he can't move as well. Everyone who watches basketball knows how he is," Saunders said. "Does he need to control himself better? Absolutely. But he's always on that edge."

"I'm not one to talk about my injuries," Cassell said. "It's (hurting) a little bit right now, but I have a couple of days off. I'll be ready."

Miller had 17 points and Mike Bibby added 16 and 10 assists for the Kings, who shot 50 percent (39-of-78) after a 33 percent effort in Game Five.

"We need to defend better," Sprewell said. "In the games we've won, we've been really good defensively. When we're good, we keep them under 40 (percent)."

The winner of Game Seven faces the Los Angeles Lakers in the conference finals.

"Now it's a one-game series," Adelman said. "And you never know what's going to happen in a one-game series. I keep telling them to extend this. We extended it today and now we want to extend it to the next round."

"We played 82 games to get home court," Saunders said of the top-seeded Timberwolves. "Now it comes down to one game. We know it's going to be a war."