Rudy Gay knocked down a bucket in regulation that tied the game and canned a 3-pointer in overtime that sealed the deal as the Sacramento Kings snapped a seven-game road losing streak with a 106-101 overtime win over the New York Knicks Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden.
Jimmer Fredette scored a career-high 24 points for the Kings (18-35), who salvaged the final game of a four-game road trip heading into the All-Star break
Carmelo Anthony had 36 points and 11 rebounds for the Knicks (20-32), who go into the All-Star festivities with two straight losses. Anthony faltered late, missing a potential game-winner in regulation and blowing a layup on the first possession of the extra session, where he was scoreless.
Fredette’s big night began in the second quarter, when he entered the game between periods and lit up MSG, scoring 15 points on 6-of-8 shooting, including 3-of-4 from 3-point range, as Sacramento closed a big early deficit to six points by halftime, 54-48.
The Kings chipped away at the deficit in the third period, rallying after New York had reopened the lead to 12 points and cutting the Knicks’ advantage to 74-72 heading into the fourth quarter.
Fredette scored nine in the fourth quarter to help bring the Kings all the way back, again hitting 3-of-4 from long range.
Sacramento trailed by five after Tyson Chandler hit a layup with 1:41 left in regulation, but Fredette answered with a 3-pointer to make it 93-91. The teams then exchanged missed 3-pointers. Gay missed from long range after a Fredette steal and Raymond Felton clanked a 3-ball at the other end. Jason Thompson rebounded the miss and the Kings took timeout with 37.5 seconds left.
With 20.8 seconds to go, Gay knocked down a 16-foot pull-up jumper to tie the game. Anthony missed a jumper as time expired and the teams headed to overtime tied at 93-93.
Sacramento never trailed in overtime. After Anthony blew the bunny on the opening possession, Gay knocked down a 3-pointer after Isaiah Thomas tracked down a long offensive rebound of his own missed 3.
Gay then stole the ball and got it to Derrick Williams for a dunk and a five-point lead. The Knicks would never have possession in a one-possession game again.
Besides Fredette’s big night, Gay and Thomas each scored 20 points for the Kings, with Thomas also chipping in with seven assists. DeMarcus Cousins finished with 19 points and 14 rebounds, Williams scored 14 points and Thompson had 10 rebounds.
Amar’e Stoudemire played a season-high 37 minutes for the Knicks and scored 20 points, while Chandler finished with 17 points and 11 rebounds. Felton notched 12 assists but was just 3-for-11 from the floor and finished with eight points, while Iman Shumpert had three steals.
Sacramento was 40-for-85 (47.1 percent) overall, 10-for-23 (43.5 percent) from deep and 16-for-19 (84.2 percent) at the foul line. New York was 41-for-90 (45.6 percent), 9-for-24 (37.5 percent) and 10-for-14 (71.4 percent). The Knicks did play without J.R. Smith, who sat out with a fractured left cheekbone.
The Knicks outrebounded the Kings 45-42 and outscored them in the paint 44-42. The Kings had the advantage in transition, outscoring New York 14-6 on the fast break. New York was uncharacteristically sloppy with the basketball, as well. Coming into the game ranked as the fourth-most efficient team in the league in terms of turnover ratio, the Knicks coughed the ball up 18 times, leading to 21 Sacramento points. Conversely, the Kings’ 16 turnovers created 16 Knicks’ points.
The Kings will have no better than a share of last place in the Western Conference heading into the break; the Los Angeles Lakers are 18-35 and host Oklahoma City Thursday night in the final NBA game before the All-Star Game.
Sacramento will return to the court at home a week from Wednesday night, hosting the Golden State Warriors at 7 p.m. Pacific.