The Sacramento Kings are no longer the worst team in the West after destroying the Minnesota Timberwolves 127-95 on Sunday. Sacramento crushed Minnesota 42-20 in the fourth quarter, doing it without DeMarcus Cousins, who was ejected late in the third quarter after shoving Luke Ridnour and Martell Webster. Already leading by 10 to start the fourth, the Kings reeled off 17 straight points to essentially end the game. During the stretch, Donte Greene scored eight and Pooh Jeter had three assists.
Samuel Dalembert led the Kings with 26 points and 17 rebounds. Cousins hadn't done much before the ejection, taking just two shots but picking up four assists. Marcus Thornton was a star, with 23 points, nine assists and eight rebounds in 38 minutes. Greene and Jeter each scored 13 off the bench; Jeter added six assists and five steals.
The Wolves are awful when they have Kevin Love; the All-Star power forward played just 14 minutes due to a strained groin. Ergo, the Wolves were more awful than usual. Michael Beasley also played just limited minutes due to an injury suffered at the hands of Andrew Bynum Friday. Minnesota has too little scoring punch with those two spending most of their time on the bench.
Cousins' incident stemmed from an in-game shove from Ridnour. Referee Violet Palmer called the play dead to call a foul on Ridnour, but Cousins approached Ridnour and returned the push. That brought in other players to separate the two; Webster tried to push Cousins away with one arm while subduing Ridnour with the other. Cousins wasn't cool with that, and gave Webster a rather hard two-handed shove. The officials immediately booted DeMarcus. It's worth noting that, following the shove by Cousins, Webster did the exact same thing to Jason Thompson, who just happened to be in front of Webster. The refs didn't call a tech on Webster, though.