Beno Udrih scored 29 points and his pet Yeti tallied four steals as the Sacramento Kings earned an ultra-rare road win over the New York Knicks. It was the first win of the current road trip for the Kings; Sacramento had been 0-3 with losses to the inferior (in comparison to the Knicks) Raptors and Wizards, as well as the Celtics. But New York's vaunted offense never got on track, thanks in part to solid defensive work from the Kings. Meanwhile, Udrih and Carl Landry squeezed out just enough offense to keep Sacramento ahead all game long.
The Knicks' offensive woes began early, as New York scored just 15 points in the first quarter. For the game, the Knicks shot just 31 percent on the game; the 'Bockers were No. 8 in the league in both total field goal and three-point percentage before the game. The Knicks played their trademark offense with lots of fast breaks and lots of threes ... but little fell in the hoop.
The Kings didn't exactly shoot the lights out either. DeMarcus Cousins went 7-20, Tyreke Evans was an out-of-sync 4-15 in his return to action after three games off with an ankle sprain and Omri Casspi was just 2-8 off the bench. Evans was his typical solid self on defense, and Casspi (seven rebounds in 25 minutes) and Cousins (10 in 23) were active on the boards. But none of the three helped much on offense.
Beno carried the load and hit several big shots down the stretch; he also had some key defensive plays. (Hence, the Yeti talk.) Landry went 6-10 and had four offensive rebounds for nine total; he repeatedly had Amar'e Stoudemire on the All-Star's heels.
Ah, Stoudemire. The man who has so destroyed Sacramento over the years led the Knicks with 25, but none of it came easy. As the game rolled on Amar'e drew plenty of fouls on Cousins, Jason Thompson and Samuel Dalembert, and that's how Stoudemire earned most of his points. From the floor, Amar'e shot just 6-22. Cousins played solid defense; Dalembert was a master in 30 bench minutes. Sam had six blocks and forced a number of bad shots from both Stoudemire and the Knicks' guards and wing.
The Kings have a rare shot at a back-to-back sweep as they head to Detroit for a Saturday night game against the underwhelming Pistons.