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Kings lose momentum with collapse against Hornets

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What started off as a promising night for the Kings ended in another demoralizing loss.

Charlotte Hornets v Sacramento Kings Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Tyrese Haliburton will have to wait until next year to get a birthday win from the Sacramento Kings. After seemingly doing enough to secure their first back-to-back win since Feb. 7, the Kings collapsed in the final minutes of Sunday’s game and lost 127-126.

Things were going the Kings’ way for most of the evening on Sunday. They were making their shots at an efficient clip from just about everywhere on the floor and they were getting solid production from their starters, who all finished the game in double figures. Buddy Hield, who’s been hot and cold from behind the arc this season, led the way for Sacramento with 30 points on 10-17 shooting from the field, including 8-15 from behind the arc.

The biggest thing they had going for them, though, was the eight-point lead they had with 1:13 left on the game clock. Not only was it a comfortable lead, but the basket that gave them the lead seemed emphatic enough to demoralize the Hornets.

Unfortunately for the Kings, that wasn’t the case, and if it was, they gave the Hornets all of the tools they needed to win in spite of that. Sacramento missed five free throws in the final 69 seconds of Sunday night’s game and allowed the Hornets to go on a 12-3 run, which was capped off by an and-one layup from Malik Monk. The Kings had the game until they didn’t.

The Kings will have two days to recuperate before they see the Los Angeles Lakers for the first time this season on Wednesday.