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Kings win Las Vegas Summer League title, Ray McCallum game MVP

By Zach Harper | NBA writer

LAS VEGAS -- The first year of the Vivek Ranadivé era may not have ended in an NBA championship as he tries to bring the Sacramento Kings back to prominence, but it did result in the 2014 Las Vegas Summer League championship. Ranadivé did say during the celebration of the 77-68 victory over the Houston Rockets that this can be the first step toward their eventual NBA championship, which would be the franchise's first since the 1951 Rochester Royals. Whether that's true or not, the second Las Vegas Summer League tournament was won by the Kings with a big fourth quarter to secure the victory.

They were led by second year point guard Ray McCallum, whose 29 points and nine rebounds helped bring home the summer title. He scored nine of his 29 in the final period, including seven straight points. The Kings' only loss of the Vegas experience came in the first game of their summer, when they lost to the Spurs. They ran off six straight victories after that loss. McCallum averaged 12.0 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 4.1 assists during his seven games.

"Fortunately, God blessed me to walk away with the MVP trophy. It means a lot, it's something I'll definitely keep forever," McCallum said. "I saw my team struggling a little bit down the stretch. I knew I had to make some big plays, score the ball, just make the right basketball play ... just find a way to win, I'm a winner."

Ra'shad James was the second leading scorer for the Kings with 12 points and rookie Nik Stauskas had 10 points. The Kings were down two points heading into the fourth quarter before ripping off a 27-16 final period. The Rockets were led by rookie Nick Johnson's 17 points. Donatas Motiejunas had 16 points and six rebounds, while Isaiah Canaan had 15 points, six assists, and four rebounds.

"We've always talked about trying to change our culture," Sacramento coach Mike Malone said. "A team that has lost so much in recent years. This isn't the regular season by any means, but for us to come here and play as well as we did and win a championship, I think that's a step in the right direction to create a winning a culture."

The Kings were able to keep the Las Vegas Summer League title in Northern California. The new format debuted in 2013 and the Golden State Warriors beat the Phoenix Suns in the championship game, as Ian Clark won game MVP.

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