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Kings 124, Cavaliers 118

The SportsXchange

SACRAMENTO -- The Sacrament Kings didn't dominate, but they held on for a 124-118 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday night at Sleep Train Arena before an announced crowd of 12,194.

DeMarcus Cousins led the Kings (14-24) with 26 points, 14 rebounds and six assists. Marcus Thornton scored 20 off the bench, Tyreke Evans had 18, and reserve Jimmer Fredette added 16.

Rookie Dion Waiters scored a career-high 33 points for Cleveland (9-31).

Sacramento ended its four-game losing streak thanks to balanced scoring. Six Kings players reached double figures, as the offense produced the victory. The Kings surrendered a season-high 128 to the Miami Heat in a loss Saturday night. Cleveland entered the game averaging 94.4 points.

The Kings did a solid job on Cleveland's second-year point guard Kyrie Irving, who was limited to a 15 point on 6-of-19 shooting.

Defending Waiters was another story. The fourth pick of the 2012 draft was close to unstoppable no matter the defender. Waiters made 12 of 18 shots from the field, including all three of his 3-point attempts.

His ability to use his dribble to the basket as well as clear space for jump shots proved an unsolvable dilemma for the Kings.

Waiters had five teammates score in double figures.

Cleveland forward Tristan Thompson contributed 17 points and a game-high 15 rebounds. He made the most of his seven offensive rebounds, turning the second chances into put-back buckets.

The Kings established a double-figure lead late in the second quarter and were able to hold off repeated charges by the Cavaliers.

Cleveland remained close thanks to Waiters and Thompson, but the Cavaliers never could get over the hump.

NOTES: Kings 2012 first-round draft choice Thomas Robinson entered the game having grabbed 10 or more rebounds in each of his past three games. He had his first double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds against Miami. Robinson finished with 12 points and seven rebounds Monday. ... Cleveland forced 22 turnovers in each of its two previous games, at Denver and at the Los Angeles Lakers, but the Kings gave the ball away just 11 times. The Cavs rank fourth in the NBA in opponents' turnovers (15.8 per game). ... Evans, who had been slowed by a sore left knee, rejoined the starting lineup. He last started Dec. 16 against the Denver Nuggets. ... Kings guard Aaron Brooks was in uniform after missing two games with the flu, but he didn't play again. ... Waiters will be coming off the bench for the next two or three weeks, according to Cavs coach Byron Scott. "We look for him to give us scoring off the bench, as well as work on some things he needs to improve. We think we can put the ball in his hands a little more with the second unit," Scott said before the game.
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