Sacramento (17-24) at New York (13-26)

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  • Game info: 7:30 pm EST Wed Jan 25, 2006
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Peja Stojakovic didn’t get traded Tuesday—but he still wasn’t around to help out the Sacramento Kings.

The Kings could be without him again as they visit the struggling New York Knicks.

Sacramento reportedly agreed to trade Stojakovic Tuesday to Indiana for Ron Artest, who was deactivated by the Pacers in December after requesting a trade. Indiana coach Rick Carlisle and CEO Donnie Walsh said Tuesday night that no deal was imminent, but Artest said the potential deal was still a possibility.

Stojakovic remained at the hotel for Tuesday’s 109-103 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers.

“I had no control over any of it,” Kings coach Rick Adelman said. “I didn’t have Peja. I told them to play with the hand you’re dealt.”

Adelman added that he was unsure of Stojakovic’s status for this game. The Kings will be playing the fourth game of a season-long six-game road trip.

“I have a lot of faith in Peja,” he said. “He’s meant a lot to me and this franchise. He’s been a pro his whole career.”

Mike Bibby did his best to make up for Stojakovic’s absence, scoring a career-high 44 points, but the Kings remained winless on the road trip. Kevin Martin added 20 points for Sacramento, which is in last place in the Pacific Division.

Center Brad Miller, who came in averaging 14.8 points and 8.1 rebounds, missed all eight of his shots and finished with two points and one rebound in 32 minutes.

“As far as distractions go, not having Peja was the biggest thing,” Bibby said. “We still don’t know what’s going on.”

The Knicks lost their fifth straight game Saturday, falling 103-94 to the New Orleans Hornets. Channing Frye scored 18 points for New York, which played its third straight game without injured guard Stephon Marbury.

However, coach Larry Brown said he hopes to have Marbury back against the Kings.

“Obviously we are a better team with Steph, but we just have to play,” said Maurice Taylor, who scored 12 points.

The Knicks were also without forward Antonio Davis, who served the second game of a five-game suspension for running into the stands in last Wednesday’s overtime loss in Chicago. New York has lost five or more in a row three times this season.

“We’re not playing the type of basketball we need to be playing,” Frye said.

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