The Kings wasted Chris Webber's first triple-double in nearly two years.
"We rebounded the ball, we pushed the ball. We pretty much got into their style of game, but we played defense,'' Marion said after the Phoenix Suns defeated the Kings for the first time in three tries, 110-101 Saturday night.
In the final 56 seconds, Marion had a basket and two free throws, a defensive rebound and a steal off an inbounds pass to snuff out Sacramento's attempt to rally.
After two losses to the division-leading Kings this season, including 95-86 on Tuesday, Suns coach Frank Johnson stressed the need to stop the fast break.
"They're just so good turning steals, missed shots -- even our scoring opportunities when we score -- into easy buckets,'' Johnson said. "So we made a conscious effort to get back on defense so they wouldn't get an easy baskets. A lot of times those are momentum-stoppers.''
Marbury, who had 10 points in the fourth quarter, completed the
scoring with four free throws in the last 38 seconds as the Suns
won for the sixth time in seven games.
"They beat us in Sacramento, which we thought we should have
won, so we came out with a lot of momentum,'' said Amare
Stoudemire, who had 16 points and 12 rebounds for the Suns.
Webber had 29 points, 15 rebounds and 11 assists. Mike Bibby added 19 points in his second game back after breaking a foot in the preseason, and Peja Stojakovic had 16 for the Kings, who lost for only the fourth time in 19 games.
"We're not in rhythm,'' Webber said. "We're not in sync. We
have to find that and get it quickly.''
The Kings, who led only once after the opening minutes, tied the
game at 89 when Webber tipped in a missed shot by Bobby Jackson
with 6:32 to go. But the Suns forged ahead again, taking a 100-91
lead on Marion's technical free throw and two foul shots by Marbury
with 3:25 to play.
Bibby made two free throws and Keon Clark had two and a layup as
the Kings closed to 100-97 with 1:53 to play. But Penny Hardaway
had a big offensive rebound with 1:33 remaining after Marbury
missed a 3-point attempt, then assisted on a basket by Marbury 21
That began the parade to the free-throw line.
"We missed a lot of layups, a lot of wide-open jump shots,'' Bibby said. "Those can come back to haunt you.''
The Suns had a 20-9 lead in the first quarter, but Bibby started a 13-2 run with a 3-pointer, and Webber made two baskets at the end, tying the game at 22 with his layup with 2:55 to play.
Phoenix surged again in the second, opening a 58-44 lead on the second of consecutive dunks by Jake Tsakalidis with 2:59 remaining.
The Suns still held a 62-52 lead at halftime, but Webber had 11 points in the third quarter, and his three-point play cut the Kings' deficit to 72-68 with 4:43 to go. Webber then passed to Vlade Divac, whose three-point play 42 seconds later got Sacramento within a point.
The Kings took a 73-72 lead on two free throws by Stojakovic
with 3:48 left in the third, but Joe Johnson had a 3-pointer, two
free throws and an assist in a 55-second span that lifted the Suns
to a 79-73 lead with 2:40 to go.
"We let them get going,'' Kings coach Rick Adelman said. "They
got the ball inside and made a lot of shots. They really got a flow
Webber's previous triple-double was on March 20, 2001, against Houston. ... The last opposing player to have a triple-double against the Suns was Charlotte's Kendall Gill on Dec. 12, 1995. ...
Kings G Damon Jones was unable to play after spraining his right ankle during warmups. ... The Suns are 6-3 when ahead at halftime. ... Sacramento had beaten the Suns in eight of their 10 previous games.