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Hornets End 11-Game Losing Streak with Victory over Sluggish Kings

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The Charlotte Hornets ended their 11-game losing run by defeating the Sacramento Kings 111-104 on January 2, 2024.

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Hornets Dominate Kings in Back-to-Back Game, Securing Victory Despite Sacramento’s Struggles

The Kings were prepared to improve on their 30-point win in Memphis, but the Hornets dominated the Kings on the second night of a back-to-back without LaMelo Ball, Gordon Hayward, Brandon Miller, or Mark Williams.

The opening half signaled Sacramento would struggle. A 17-3 Charlotte rally ended the Kings’ 10-point lead in the first quarter. De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk struggled to score, as the Kings shot 30%.

Sacramento had greater ball possession issues in the second quarter. The Kings committed six turnovers in this stanza, totaling 21 for the night. In 18 minutes, Domantas Sabonis nearly reached his season-high turnover count with five in the first half. Fox scored nine points in the second quarter, but the Kings led 50-45 at halftime. Despite glimpses of a comeback, the Kings struggled to score and address turnovers. Terry Rozier’s 14 fourth-quarter points powered the Hornets’ comeback. Sacramento’s defensive failings let the Hornets shoot 75% in the fourth quarter.

READ ALSO: Why have the Sacramento Kings struggled on the second nights of back-to-backs?

Hornets Seal Victory with 10-0 Run, Kings Struggle Despite Fox’s Fourth-Quarter Efforts

With a 10-0 run, the Hornets took advantage of Sacramento’s offensive, defensive, and turnover issues. Fox’s 12 fourth-quarter points weren’t enough to win for the Kings. The sold-out Golden 1 Center audience was shocked by the performance.

Fox noted the team’s ball recklessness after the game and urged better. Interim head coach Mike Brown criticized execution, urgency, and halfcourt defense. Shots near the rim were ineffective for the Kings, highlighting their offensive issues.

Sacramento confronts a back-to-back game against the Orlando Magic on Wednesday, raising questions about its consistency and the necessity for major adjustments before the February 8 trade deadline. Due to their 0-4 record on the second night of back-to-backs, the Orlando Magic have surprised the Kings this season. The Kings must react soon.

READ ALSO: Hornets snap 11-game skid, beat sluggish Kings

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