Hobbled Evans misses seventh game in a row

Published: Monday, Dec. 31, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 9C

Kings guard Tyreke Evans plans to get a second opinion on his troublesome left knee after missing his seventh consecutive game because of soreness.

Evans targeted Sunday's game against the Boston Celtics at Sleep Train Arena to take the court for the first time in two weeks.

But after practicing and working out in the days leading up to the game, Evans decided he wasn't ready.

Evans practiced Saturday and also got in an extra workout Saturday night, coach Keith Smart said.

"(Evans) came to shootaround (Sunday morning), and it just wasn't working for him," Smart said.

Evans said if he couldn't play against the Celtics he would seek a second opinion.

He has missed 12 games since bruising his left knee in a collision with Minnesota forward Andrei Kirilenko's knee Nov. 27. An MRI earlier this month showed no structural damage.

Since being injured, Evans has appeared in four games, the last Dec. 16 against Denver. He played just 10 minutes before being removed from that game.

Before the injury, Evans was playing his best ball of the season while adjusting to the shooting guard role.

"It's unfortunate for him because he should be a part of what we're trying to re-establish," Smart said.

Smart said Evans' absence isn't felt on offense, where his 15.1 points per game are second-best on the team.

But Evans had taken to being a better defender, and the Kings don't have another guard with his size and strength to fill that defensive void.

"We miss that and everything else he brings," Smart said. "It's unfortunate for his sake that he's had this setback."

More soreness – Point guard Aaron Brooks did not dress for the game because of a sore left ankle. It was the first game he had missed this season.

Smart said Brooks hurt his ankle in Friday's win over New York.

"He had some stiffness (Saturday), so he had treatment all day (Saturday) and (Sunday)," Smart said. "And we'll see what happens on this road trip. We've got a long flight in the morning to the other side of the country."

Moving up – Boston forward Paul Pierce passed Adrian Dantley for 23rd on the NBA's all-time scoring list.

Pierce scored 20 points to give him 23,189. He passed Dantley's 23,177 on a three-pointer with 6:37 to play in the third quarter.

To move up to 22nd, Pierce will have to pass former teammate Ray Allen, who now plays for Miami. Allen has 23,244 points.

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