McCollum’s 30 Points Lead Pelicans to Dominant Victory Over Kings

New Orleans Pelicans, Brandon Ingram, CJ McCollum, NBA News
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CJ McCollum led the charge with 30 points and seven 3-pointers as the New Orleans Pelicans demolished the Sacramento Kings 133-100 during Sunday night’s NBA action.

The Pelicans extended their road winning streak to six games and swept all four season matchups against the Kings, including an In-Season Tournament quarterfinal win in Sacramento.

Jonas Valanciunas contributed a double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds, and Brandon Ingram also added 15 points in the victory. Pelicans coach Willie Green praised the team’s performance, emphasizing their excellent execution on both ends of the floor.

“It was beautiful … just wire to wire,” Green said. “It was fun basketball to watch. They executed on both ends of the floor.”

The win was significant for the Pelicans, competing for a playoff spot in the Western Conference. They bounced back strongly after a 16-point home loss to the Clippers on Friday.

Domantas Sabonis posted 17 points and 10 rebounds for the Kings, but star guard De’Aaron Fox struggled, scoring only three points on 1-10 shooting. Kings coach Mike Brown commended the Pelicans and apologized to fans for his team’s lackluster performance.

“Give New Orleans a lot of credit,” Brown said. “They came in here and they just flat-out kicked our (butts), and did it for four quarters.”

“For us to perform that way and the lack of fight to get back in the game, stay in the game … was nonexistent,” Brown continued.

NBA NEWS & SCORES: CJ McCollum, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings Updates

The Pelicans achieved this commanding win even without Zion Williamson, sidelined with a right quad contusion, and Jose Alvarado, who missed the game due to a non-COVID illness.

“Guys did a great job of moving the ball around, setting great screens for me, allowing me to maintain rhythm and balance and let me shoot the ball with confidence,” McCollum said.

New Orleans took control of the game early, leading by 12 after the first quarter and extending their lead with a 12-2 run in the second quarter. McCollum played a crucial role, particularly in this stretch. Ingram acknowledged McCollum’s impact and the team’s collective intelligence on the court.

“We had some good IQ on the floor,” Ingram said. “Where he was hiding, we kept feeding him the basketball. He felt comfortable tonight and we just kept feeding him, so we always try to go to what’s hot.”

NBA NEWS & SCORES: CJ McCollum, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings Updates

The Pelicans’ dominance continued as they led by 27 points at halftime and extended the margin to 40 by the end of the third quarter. They also excelled in rebounding, outperforming the Kings 51-25 on the boards.

Coach Green acknowledged the challenge of beating a team four times in a season but credited the favorable matchup against Sacramento. He expects the Kings to be better prepared for their next encounter.

“It’s hard to beat a team four times, we understand that,” Green said. “There are certain matchups in the NBA that are suited for certain teams. We seem to match up well with Sacramento. We play them again, so I’m sure when that time comes, they’ll be ready.”

NBA NEWS & SCORES: CJ McCollum, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings Updates

Looking ahead, the Pelicans will face the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday, while the Kings are set to play the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday.

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