Brandon Bass vs. Sacramento
Brandon Bass dunks against the Sacramento Kings on Jan. 20, 2016.
(Ty Nowell/

Lakers Can't Catch Kings

by Joey Ramirez
Digital Reporter

Having trailed all night, the Lakers finally chipped Sacramento’s lead down to four with eight minutes left, but the Kings simply fed the ball to their beast, who had been feasting all night.

DeMarcus Cousins scored half of his team’s points in Sacramento’s ensuing 12-0 run, as the visitors never trailed in their 112-93 win over Los Angeles.

Cousins racked up 36 points and 16 rebounds on the night, while shooting 13-of-22 from the field and 10-of-12 at the foul line.

“Is there a better center that’s playing basketball right now in the NBA?” Kings coach George Karl asked. “I don’t think there is. … I don’t know anybody that’s playing at this level right now in the NBA.”

Meanwhile, an old foe kept the Kings’ engine running, as Rajon Rondo handed out 17 assists — exactly as many as the Lakers (9-35) had as a team.

Rondo also provided 11 points while matching the most assists by a Lakers foe in the last five years.

“DeMarcus did a lot towards the end of the night,” Julius Randle said. “I think they did a good job of getting Rajon the ball. A lot is happening in the NBA; it was just on the wrong side for us today.”

Sacramento (18-23) jumped out to a 10-point lead after one quarter largely by shutting down the Lakers’ offense, as the purple and gold shot just 35.6 percent.

Though Brandon Bass pitched in a season-high 18 points plus seven rebounds and three blocks, the Kings led by as many as 20 in their sixth straight win against L.A.

“We were fighting uphill so much,” Bass said. “When you get down against a pretty good team, it’s tough to get the lead and sustain it and get the win.”

The Lakers raised $9,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation by donating $1,000 for every dunk they made. … Kobe Bryant scored 11 of his 15 points in the second quarter. … Rudy Gay had 16 points and a career-high six blocks for Sacramento. … A sold-out crowd of 18,997 was in attendance at Staples Center.

A photo posted by Lakers Scene (@lakersscene) on

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