DeMarcus Cousins matched his season high with 35 points, Rudy Gay set a season high with his 32 points and the Sacramento Kings withstood a 46-point onslaught by the Portland Trail Blazers Tuesday night at Sleep Train Arena for a 123-119 victory.
The 123 points was also a season high for the Kings, who trailed by 11 points at the end of the first quarter and led by 19 points in the fourth period before Portland made things interesting.
How interesting? Damian Lillard poured in 26 points in the fourth quarter—the highest-scoring quarter by a player in the NBA this season—and hit a pair of free throws with 16.5 seconds left that got the Trail Blazers back to within two points at 121-119.
But Isaiah Thomas iced it with two free throws with 14.3 seconds left and the Kings had their first win in three meetings with Portland this season.
Cousins also had 13 rebounds and two blocked shots for Sacramento, while Thomas finished with 22 points, eight assists and a season-best seven rebounds, while Derrick Williams scored 14 points off the bench for the Kings.
Marcus Thornton returned to the starting lineup for Sacramento, with rookie Ben McLemore—who has struggled mightily of late—returning to the bench. Neither was much of a factor—Thornton scored three pounds and had eight rebounds in 22 minutes, while McLemore scored two points in 18 minutes.
Lillard finished with 41 points for the Blazers, who have lost four of their last six after a 24-5 start.
LaMarcus Aldridge added 24 points, Robin Lopez had 18 points and two blocked shots and Nicolas Batum went for 11 points and 11 rebounds. Mo Williams paced Portland with six assists.
Portland’s 46-point fourth quarter came after the Blazers netted just 13 points in the third period as Sacramento led 80-73 entering the fourth. The Blazers ended the night shooting 39-for-90 (43.3 percent), but they were just 27-for-71 (38 percent) after the first quarter.
Portland was 10-for-27 (37 percent) from 3-point range and 31-for-36 (86.1 percent) from the foul line. Sacramento was 40-for-85 (47.1 percent), 7-for-15 (46.7 percent) and 36-for-50 (72 percent).
The Trail Blazers won the rebounding battle 51-48 and dominated second-chance points, 23-14. The Kings led 44-38 in points in the paint and 18-10 on fast-break opportunities.
The game swung on turnovers—Portland committed 16 that created 25 Sacramento points, while the Blazers got just eight points off nine Kings miscues.
The Kings will be home again on Friday night when they host the Orlando Magic. Tipoff at Sleep Train Arena is 7 p.m. Pacific.