Darren Collison missed a three-pointer that would have given the Kings the lead with 3.8 seconds to play, and Sacramento fell to 1-1 in the preseason with a 102-98 loss to the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena.
The Kings committed 21 turnovers. Kings coach George Karl said many of them were unforced errors.
“I think we’ve had 40 turnovers in two nights and bet 60 percent, 70 percent are unforced,” Karl said. “Some of that’s not knowing each other; some of that’s trying to do a little bit too much in a crowd, putting yourself in difficult decision-making places. I think we’ll get better at it.”
Rudy Gay led the Kings with 30 points. He made 10 of 13 shots, including 7 of 8 on three-pointers. DeMarcus Cousins added 15 points on 3-for-12 shooting and eight rebounds. T.J. Warren and Jon Leuer led Phoenix (1-0) with 17 points apiece.
The Kings led 79-76 after three quarters before the Suns rallied. The Kings led by as many as 16 points in the first half.
“You had a horse,” Karl said. “Rudy was playing so well we had to ride him a little bit. But then the second half we just never got any flow. The first unit didn’t get any flow, the second unit didn’t get any flow. But we also missed some shots that I think we’re going to make.”
Kosta Koufos, who started Monday at Portland, was given the night off to rest. Willie Cauley-Stein started for Koufos. Cauley-Stein – who had eight points, seven rebounds and three blocks in 27 minutes – and Ben McLemore were the only starters to play in the fourth quarter.
The Kings host San Antonio Thursday at Sleep Train Arena. It will be the third game in four nights for Sacramento, which opened the preseason Monday at the Portland Trail Blazers.
Karl was undecided as to whom he might rest for that game.
“I don’t think anybody wants to rest,” Karl said. “I asked about four or five of them to go in the bullpen – they didn’t want to go in the bullpen. There will be one or two guys that might be out the rotation (now) that will be in the rotation.”