Jackson scored 24 points against the team that cast him aside
two years ago, and Chris Webber had 22 points and 11 rebounds as
the Sacramento Kings beat Minnesota 98-86 Tuesday night for their
10th consecutive home victory.
Jackson has played remarkably while filling in for injured point
guard Mike Bibby, but he plays at an even different level of
intensity against Minnesota. He spent two seasons there before the
Wolves let him sign with Sacramento in the summer of 2000.
''I've got love for K.G. and the guys I played with, but I just
can't stand that organization,'' Jackson said after hitting five
3-pointers and sparking the fourth-quarter rally that put it away.
''It's nothing against their players, but I just want to beat
the dirt out of them every time we play them, just because of the
way they treated me. I want to let them know what they're missing
Jackson scored 11 points in the third quarter and Webber made
five consecutive shots in the fourth as the Kings survived the
stiffest challenge they've faced during their longest
season-opening winning streak ever at Arco Arena.
After sitting out the early part of the fourth, Jackson entered
with 5½ minutes left and promptly dished to Keon Clark for a
thunderous dunk. Jackson then had a three-point play on a sprawling
layup during an 18-4 run that iced it.
''There's only two teams I really hate losing to: Minnesota and
L.A.,'' Jackson said.
After beating the buzzer with a 3-pointer to end the third
quarter -- and again after his big fourth-quarter layup -- Jackson
gave a long stare and made an emphatic gesture toward Minnesota
coach Flip Saunders.
''Bobby has improved a lot. He's still a streaky shooter,''
Saunders said. ''He has a lot of confidence in his ability to hit
the 3. He's worked at his game a lot. This is the perfect situation
Kevin Garnett had 18 points, 16 rebounds and nine assists -- barely missing his ninth career triple-double. He got his eighth
against the Kings last Wednesday in Minneapolis, but the Kings held
him to four points on 1-for-5 shooting in the fourth quarter.
''When you (face) a team with nine players, you have to find a
way to get it done,'' Garnett said. ''I don't think the Kings'
style is a danger to us. This is the same team we had down by 20
points (last week).''
Jackson led six players in double figures for the injury-plagued
Kings, who dressed nine players and used only eight. Clark, signed
specifically to block shots and help out on defense against tall,
thin players like Garnett, added eight rebounds and six blocks.
The Timberwolves are the only team to beat Sacramento since Nov.
15, but they never got a lead in the clubs' second meeting in a
week. Minnesota snapped the Kings' six-game winning streak last
''It was definitely a payback game,'' said Gerald Wallace, who
scored 10 points and helped out on defense against Garnett.
''They're a tough team to match up with, but we did everything we
could against K.G., and we minimized their other players.''
Troy Hudson scored 19 points for Minnesota. Garnett could have
had his 10th assist on a pass to Hudson with 1:16 left, but the
scorers didn't award one after Hudson ducked under a defender's
challenge and took a step forward before hitting the shot.
The Timberwolves have health problems of their own, with Wally
Szczerbiak, Terrell Brandon and Felipe Lopez on the injured list.
Rod Strickland scored 10 points in a reserve role, and Kendall Gill
The Wolves closed to one point in the second half, but they
never tied the game or took a lead.
Strickland chatted with Kings coach Rick Adelman and
assistant Terry Porter at halftime. The three were together in
Portland in the 1990s. ... San Francisco 49ers receiver Terrell
Owens and Hall of Fame slugger Reggie Jackson sat courtside next to
Kings owner Gavin Maloof. In the fourth quarter, Kings mascot
Slamson caught a football at midcourt, pulled a pen out of his
costume's furry foot and asked Owens to sign the ball. Owens
grinningly obliged, then threw the football into the crowd. ...
Referee Jim Clark apologized to the Kings for allowing Minnesota to
call a timeout after Jackson already had the ball for a foul shot.
When Kings fans heckled him, Clark turned and said: ''I said I made
Dave McMenamin explains how Paul George's decision to play for the United States team impacted LeBron James' decision to sit out of this year's summer games.
The NBA's Rookie of the Year won't be playing internationally for the United States, instead remains loyal to his Dominican roots.
Within just a few hours of Thursday night's NBA draft, the Oklahoma City Thunder are reportedly shopping Serge Ibaka.