Kings center DeMarcus Cousins threw down a ferocious dunk in overtime to lead Sacramento to a 135-129 win against the New York Knicks. Cousins scored a season-high 39 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in his return from an illness Saturday night.
With a minute remaining in overtime and the Kings leading 129-126, Cousins received a pass at the three-point line from Ray McCallum. Knicks point guard Shane Larkin immediately rushed out to help center Jason Smith cover Cousins who easily split the double-team, took one dribble to the basket and sealed the Kings' win with his slam.
Cousins was listed as probable with the stomach flu after missing Friday's 115-106 loss to the Phoenix Suns. He had played in the previous three games following a 10-game absence due to viral meningitis. The Kings announced his return to the lineup on Saturday via Twitter.
Cousins scored at least 22 points and played at least 30 minutes in each of the last four games, including three double doubles, which is a good sign for a Kings team that surprisingly fired second-year head coach Mike Malone on Dec. 15. Lead assistant Tyrone Corbin was named interim coach, and has gone 2-4 in his first six games.
In addition to Cousins, the Kings' duo of Darren Collison and Rudy added much-needed punch. Collision posted a double double with 27 points and 10 assists while Gay added 29 points. Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony scored 36 in the loss. The Kings improved to 13-17 while the Knicks fell to 5-27.
- Mike Fiammetta and Adam Pincus