At least the Kings know where they're going: Disneyland. The path seems clear, and Sacramento's only major league team is poised to become the third wheel in southern California.
The Suns aren't anywhere near the happiest place on Earth. Friday's 116-113 loss in Sacramento, where the Suns used to drop by twice a year to pick up wins and pad their stats, further solidified Phoenix's lottery status for this summer and made what could be their last visit to Cowtown incredibly forgettable.
As has been the case in each of their four losses in the last five games, the Suns had their chances to win. They led in the fourth quarter, this time by double digits. But just as the Lakers and Hornets and Mavericks before them had done, the Kings reeled in the Suns down the stretch, and Phoenix had no defensive answers while its offensive execution left early for the night.
"They played well down the stretch, and they made shots. We had good looks at the basket that didn't go down," said Phoenix coach Alvin Gentry, summing up the obvious. "We just can't turn the ball over. We turned the ball over at the most inopportune times. They ended up getting easy baskets and didn't have to work for them. That's how they got back into the game.
"For some reason, we struggled in the fourth quarter. Tonight, we score 20 and give up 31. That has kind of been what has happened to us the last four or five games."
The Suns finished the season 1-3 against the 21-52 Kings. Yeah, that will pretty much keep you out of the playoffs. The Suns now have the distinct pleasure of coming home for a back-to-back against Oklahoma City on Wednesday.
KINGS 116, SUNS 113: Marcus Thornton had 24 points and a career-high 11 rebounds, and the Kings won their fourth straight game while the reeling Suns lost for the fourth time in five games.
Jared Dudley and Channing Frye had 21 points each to lead Phoenix, which allowed a 14-4 Kings run in the fourth quarter and was finished off by a 7-0 Sacramento spurt down the stretch.
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