The Kings were on the verge of an epic collapse when Bogdan Bogdanovic, Trevor Ariza and Harrison Barnes came to the rescue Friday night at State Farm Arena.
The Atlanta Hawks cut a 21-point deficit to one in the fourth quarter before Ariza, Bogdanovic and Barnes unleashed a 3-point barrage to help the Kings hold on for a 121-109 victory.
Buddy Hield scored 22 points to lead the Kings (3-6). Bogdanovic had 20 points, five assists and four rebounds. De’Aaron Fox had 17 points and nine assists.
Trae Young had 30 points and 11 assists for the Hawks (3-5).
The Kings led by 21 and carried a 63-47 advantage into the break after turning in one of their best halves of the season. They shot 63.4 percent and made 7 of 14 from 3-point range in the opening half while holding the Hawks to 43.8-percent shooting from the field and 2-of-14 shooting from beyond the arc.
The Kings led 72-54 early in the third quarter before the Hawks staged a 12-0 run to cut the deficit to six. Atlanta got within four on a three-point play by Kevin Huerter with 2:16 to play in the third and cut Sacramento’s lead to one on a layup by Cam Reddish early in the fourth. That’s when Bogdanovic, Ariza and Barnes got hot, draining a series of 3-pointers to fuel a 22-5 run.
Kings center Harry Giles III made his season debut after being cleared to play before the game.
Giles missed the first eight games and most of the preseason due to left knee soreness. He has a history of knee injuries dating to high school and had not played since a thigh contusion caused him to miss the last 11 games of the 2018-19 season.
“It feels good, man. God is good,” Giles said before the game. “Ready to go have some fun. It’s been a process, just getting myself together mentally and physically. I’m excited to play, man.”
Kings coach Luke Walton said Giles looked good in practice Thursday. Walton said the game would dictate how much Giles would play.
“We’ll see how the game goes,” Walton said. “He had a very good practice (Thursday). He looked great and he knows – I’ve talked to him – if I feel like we need that energy boost, then yeah (Giles will play). If not, we’ll let the game dictate that.”
Giles entered the game at the start of the second quarter. He had four points, one rebound and one emphatic blocked shot in six first-half minutes.
Dedmon cleared to play
Kings center Dewayne Dedmon was cleared to play against his former team after being listed as questionable due to a sprained right knee. Dedmon said he suffered the injury in Wednesday’s loss to the Toronto Raptors.
The seven-year NBA veteran spent two seasons with the Hawks before signing a three-year, $40 million free-agent deal with Sacramento last summer. Dedmon emerged as one of the best 3-point shooting big men in the league with Atlanta, where he averaged 10.8 points and 7.5 rebounds while shooting 38.2 percent from beyond the arc last season. He hasn’t replicated that success yet with Sacramento, averaging 5.3 points and 5.3 rebounds while shooting 21.7 percent from beyond the arc.
Hello, old friend
Giles and Hawks forward Vince Carter shared a warm embrace at midcourt before tipoff. Carter, 42, who is playing his record 22nd NBA season, was with the Kings in 2017-18, serving as a veteran mentor for young players such as Giles.
Suspension hurts Hawks
The Hawks were without John Collins, a 6-9 forward who was suspended for 25 games earlier this week after testing positive for a growth hormone. Collins, the team’s leading rebounder and second-leading scorer, averaged 19.5 points and 9.8 rebounds last season. He averaged 17 points and 8.8 rebounds while shooting 47.4 percent from 3-point range in the first five games this season before the suspension was imposed.
Making up for lost time
A schedule quirk is allowing the Kings to make up for lost time on the practice court following a disjointed training camp and a preseason trip to India. The Kings have played twice since Sunday’s victory over the New York Knicks and will not play again until they host the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday at Golden 1 Center, giving them just two games in eight days.
“We’re looking forward to it,” Walton said before Friday’s game. “Right now we’re focused on this game and playing the Hawks, but it will be nice when we get back home to have a little bit of time to clean some things up, add some new things and get some work done.”
Friday’s game against the Kings was the first of six in a row the Hawks will play against Western Conference competition. They will now set out on a five-game trip to face the Portland Trail Blazers, Denver Nuggets, Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Clippers and Los Angeles Lakers.
The Kings have won four in a row and six of their last eight games against the Hawks. Sacramento lost 15 in a row in the series from 2008 to 2015.
Sacramento Kings: OUT — Marvin Bagley III (right thumb fracture).
Atlanta Hawks: OUT — John Collins (suspension), Allen Crabbe (right knee post-op rehab), Chandler Parsons (load management), Evan Turner (left Achilles pain).
Sacramento Kings upcoming schedule
Nov. 12 vs. Portland Trail Blazers
Nov. 15 at Los Angeles Lakers
Nov. 17 vs. Boston Celtics
Nov. 19 vs. Phoenix Suns
Nov. 22 at Brooklyn Nets