Most of the Kings have been through this before.
It wasn't the first time the team played amid relocation speculation. Several Kings were around for the "last" game in Sacramento in 2011, when it appeared the team was about to move to Anaheim.
So it should come as no surprise the Kings appeared not to be bothered at all by recent off-court developments. The Kings got off to a good start and appeared on their way to ending a two-game losing streak.
Instead, they were haunted by issues that have slowed them all season in what became a 117-112 overtime loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday night at Sleep Train Arena.
The Kings (13-23) let a 17-point lead late in the third quarter get away against a struggling Mavericks team, as the Kings were outrebounded 52-41 and allowed 25 points off 20 turnovers.
The Kings finished the game without DeMarcus Cousins, who picked up his sixth foul in overtime when he hit Dallas guard Vince Carter in the face with his forearm. The flagrant foul 2 meant Cousins was automatically ejected. It was his second ejection this season.
"Things happen in the heat of the battle," said Kings coach Keith Smart. " I didn't see it. I just saw the guy on the floor."
The league has fined players for flagrant foul 2 calls this season. Smart does not expect Cousins to be suspended.
"I'm pretty sure that my reputation will come into play with the decision, but hopefully they realize that it wasn't intentional," Cousins said.
The Kings lost their two previous game by at least 20 points but looked to be in position to end their losing streak against the Mavericks, who had lost four in row and 10 of 11.
The Kings led 71-54 with 3:51 left in the third quarter, their biggest advantage of the game. But the Mavericks were able to shave seven points off that lead (78-68) entering the fourth quarter.
Carter and O.J. Mayo led the Dallas comeback, combining for 21 of Dallas' 33 points in the fourth quarter.
The Kings went with a small lineup of Aaron Brooks, Jimmer Fredette, Marcus Thornton, Tyreke Evans and Thomas Robinson early in the fourth quarter as the Mavs chipped away.
Smart said he wanted to space the floor with that group.
"Certain match-ups didn't go to our favor," said forward Jason Thompson. "It was crucial at the beginning of the fourth. But it is what it is. We're all professionals. I just think that we kind of had mismatches for them and stuff like that."
The Mavs led 100-95 with 58.1 seconds to play in regulation but gave up a three-pointer to John Salmons with 48.7 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
Then, Isaiah Thomas banked in a three-pointer with 9.1 seconds to play to tie the score at 101.
The Kings were in position to tie because Mayo missed one of two free throws with 15.7 seconds to play.
The Mavs had the ball knocked out of bounds twice on their final possession before getting the ball to Darren Collision with 1.3 seconds left in regulation. Collison missed a jumper to force overtime.
Dallas (14-23) improved to 1-7 in overtime games with the win. The Kings are 0-2 in overtime games.
Cousins led the Kings with 29 points. Tyreke Evans came off the bench in his second game back from a sore left knee to finish with 20 points and seven rebounds.
Thomas scored 18 points.
Mayo led the Mavs with 24 points. Carter had 23 points.