Clippers end road trip with loss to Kings, loss of Leonard

Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports
Sacramento evened out its season series with the Clippers, 2-2.

The Sacramento Kings lit the beam in Sacramento on Tuesday night after they knocked the lights out of the Clippers in a huge third quarter.

Sacramento led by as many as 26 points as Domantas Sabonis scored 22 points, 20 rebounds and nine assists for the Kings en route to a 109-95 victory.

Meanwhile, the Clippers were without key player Kawhi Leonard, who left the trip early for LA with a sore right knee.

Turning point: The Clippers climbed back from a 16-point deficit in the second quarter and trailed by five at halftime. The Kings outscored LA 35-19 in the third and even capped the period with a 7-0 run. Sacramento held that lead throughout the fourth quarter before sealing the win and lighting the beam.

What it means: The Clippers close out their four-game road trip with one loss and head home, where they’ll play six of their final seven games. However, they have lost five consecutive games at Arena. LA (47-28) stays in the fourth place in the Western Conference.

Hits: Russell Westbrook led the way against the Kings, collecting 20 points, two rebounds and two assists in 24 minutes. He shot 50 percent from the field, 60 percent on three-pointers and 100 percent from the free-throw line. The only blemish on his stat line was five fouls.

Misses: James Harden had a rough night on both ends of the ball. Harden finished Tuesday night 1-for-7 from the field with five turnovers. He did, however, also collect eight assists and five rebounds.

Stat of the game: Sacramento had the advantage on the Clippers in several categories. The Kings scored 46 points in the paint compared to LA’s 30. The Clippers allowed 20 offensive rebounds while collecting 16 turnovers. The Kings meanwhile, finished with 10.

Up next: The Clippers open three-game homestand against the Nuggets on Thursday followed by the the Jazz (Friday) and Cavaliers (Sunday).