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De’Aaron Fox sets new career-high, but Kings can’t complete comeback

The Kings had a few bright spots on Sunday, but their defense wasn’t one of them in their 128-123 loss to the Pelicans.

New Orleans Pelicans v Sacramento Kings Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

In the three years that De’Aaron Fox and Marvin Bagley III have been teammates, there haven’t been many nights where both of them have had it going offensively. Sunday night was one of those nights.

When the Sacramento Kings hosted the New Orleans Pelicans at the Golden 1 Center on Sunday, Marvin Bagley III and De’Aaron Fox combined for 69 points on an efficient 28-of-46 from the field. Fox led all scorers with 43 points, which is a new career-high for him. His previous career-high was 39 points.

Meanwhile, Bagley recorded a 26-point, 10-rebound double-double. Sunday marked his fourth-ever game with at least 25 points and 10 rebounds, and his fourth game with a double-double this season.

Unfortunately, not even the most encouraging offensive displays from Fox and Bagley could make up for the Kings’ atrocious defense. The Kings allowed the Pelicans to score 128 points in regulation, including 67 points in the first half. They’ve allowed at least 120 points in the 10 of the 14 games they’ve played this season, and 120.5 points per 100 possessions. They’re on pace to have a historically bad defense.

The Kings were able to fight their way back from a 19-point lead, but it was ultimately too little too late for them, and they lost by a narrow margin of 128-123. Until their defensive effort is consistent for four quarters, they’ll have many games end the same, frustrating way that Sunday’s game did.

The Kings will be back at it on Wednesday to take on the LA Clippers, who they were blown out by 138-100 on Friday. Suffice to say, they’ll be hoping to make that matchup more interesting the last time out.