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76ers 89, Kings 80

The SportsXchange

PHILADELPHIA -- Thaddeus Young had 23 points and 15 rebounds Friday night as the Philadelphia 76ers held off the Sacramento Kings 89-80.

Jrue Holiday added 21 points and Nick Young 20 for the Sixers (20-26), who frittered away a 19-point second-quarter lead but rallied in the fourth quarter to win consecutive games for the first time since late November.

They are, however, just 10-20 since winning 10 of their first 16 games this season.

Tyreke Evans had 29 points to lead the Kings (17-31), who dropped their second straight and fell to 5-19 on the road. Isaiah Thomas added 24 and DeMarcus Cousins chipped in 12 points and 12 rebounds.

Thaddeus Young, whose rebound total equaled his career high, triggered a decisive 17-2 run by hitting the go-ahead jumper with 9:51 left as the Sixers erased a 73-72 deficit and seized an 89-75 lead with 3:54 to play. He and Holiday contributed six points apiece to the run and Sacramento missed seven straight shots from the floor.

The Sixers had led 48-29 midway through the second quarter and were still up by 18, at 58-40, early in the third. But the Kings went on a 23-8 run behind Evans, who scored 11 points in that flurry. In all he had 13 in the period, which ended with the Sixers holding a 72-68 lead.

The Kings took their first lead of the night, at 73-72, on three free throws by Thomas with 10:35 left. Thomas, who was fouled by Nick Young while attempting a 3-pointer from the left corner, had also made three free throws with 3.2 seconds left in the third quarter when Holiday fouled him as he attempted a 3 from the right wing.

Holiday and Thaddeus Young scored 13 points apiece as the Sixers claimed a 48-29 lead late in the second quarter. Their lead was 54-39 at halftime.

Evans scored 13 points in the first half for Sacramento and Cousins contributed eight points and eight rebounds.

Notes: The Kings have several Delaware Valley connections. Evans is a native of Chester, Pa., Jason Thompson grew up in New Jersey and attended Rider University and John Salmons played his high school ball at Plymouth Whitemarsh High School in Plymouth Meeting, Pa. ... Sacramento coach Keith Smart said the absence of a "paint protector" is a big reason the Kings have allowed an NBA-worst 103.1 points a game. The other problem has been some untimely turnovers. "When you turn the ball over above the foul line," he said, "those are very difficult plays to defend." ... Sixers guard Jason Richardson missed his sixth straight game with a sore left knee. ... Salmons, identified by Smart as "a glue guy and a calming spirit," returned to the Kings' lineup after missing Wednesday's loss in Boston with the flu.
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