SACRAMENTO (AP) — Brook Lopez had 22 points and six blocks and the Brooklyn Nets defeated the Sacramento Kings 103-100 on Wednesday night for only their second win in the last 10.
The Nets had a 23-point lead in the opening half, but the Kings eventually cut it to two late in the fourth quarter. Some clutch shooting by Joe Johnson helped preserve the victory for Brooklyn.
Johnson scored 16 points, as did Jarrett Jack, who also had eight assists for the Nets.
Alan Andereson had 14 and Bojan Bogdanovic added 10.
The Nets won six of seven games and reached the .500 mark on Jan. 2. But Brooklyn had been in a terrible stretch ever since, at one point losing seven straight.
DeMarcus Cousin had 28 points and 14 rebounds for Sacramento, which dropped its fifth straight.
Rudy Gay scored 25 points and had eight rebounds and six assists and Darren Collison had 16 points.
Trailing by 15 points, Gay ignited a 12-2 run by the Kings. His steal and subsequent dunk pulled the Kings within 91-85 with 4:40 remaining. Gay had 10 of the 12 points in the spurt.
Gay’s basket, Collison’s tip-in and Cousins’ two free throws pulled the Kings to within 96-94. Johnson responded with a 3 to build the Nets’ lead to five points. Johnson added three free throws in the final 24 seconds to hold off the Kings.
The Nets’ reserves were instrumental in establishing the 62-46 first-half lead. They shot 14 of 23 and outscored the Kings’ bench 32-16.
Nets: Deron Williams (fractured rib cartilage) is traveling with team, but missed his seventh straight game. The veteran point guard was shooting at Monday’s practice and Tuesday ran on the treadmill, then dribbled and shot after practice.
Kings: Reserve guard Ramon Sessions was back on the court after missing the previous 13 games with a low back sprain. He had two points and four assists in 22 minutes. ... Cousins and Gay, Sacramento’s leading scorers, shot a combined 4 for 20 in the opening half.
Brooklyn visits the Clippers on Thursday.
Kings travel to Golden State on Friday.