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Kings 107, Lakers 102

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Forward Rudy Gay scored 31 points, guard Ray McCallum added a career-best 27, and the Sacramento Kings sent the Los Angeles Lakers plummeting to a depth they haven’t reached in almost four decades.

Center DeMarcus Cousins finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds, and the Kings handed the Lakers their 50th loss with a 107-102 decision at Sleep Train Arena on Wednesday.

Sacramento rookie guard Ben McLemore contributed 12 points.

The Lakers (25-50) last dropped 50 games in a season in 1974-75. That club, which featured Hall of Fame guard Gail Goodrich and future coach Pat Riley, finished 30-52, the worst mark in franchise history. The current Lakers must win five of their final seven just to equal that record.

Los Angeles hung with Sacramento for most of the night despite playing without forward Pau Gasol, the team’s leading scorer and rebounder, and center Chris Kaman. Los Angeles dressed only nine players, but it trailed just 105-102 when guard Kent Bazemore missed a driving layup with 24 seconds left.

Cousins snatched the rebound, McCallum made one of two free throws, forward Travis Outlaw subsequently sank one of two free throws, and the Kings (27-48) salvaged the last of four games played between the teams this season.

The Lakers lost at least 50 games for the fourth time in franchise history. As the Minneapolis Lakers, they went 19-53 in 1957-58, the worst winning percentage in franchise history. Two years later, Minneapolis went 25-50, then moved to Los Angeles after the season.

Guard Jodie Meeks led Los Angeles with 21 points. Center Jordan Hill scored 18 points and grabbed 15 rebounds, and guard Nick Young, coming off a 40-point night in the Lakers’ 124-112 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday, added 17.

Gasol suffered a recurrence of the serious vertigo that caused him to miss four of his team’s previous five games. Kaman also was a late scratch, sitting out due to a strained right calf.

Even without the duo’s combined average of 28 points and 15 rebounds per game, the Lakers hung with the Kings much of the night. Los Angeles never trailed by more than 12.

Cousins passed Corliss Williamson for 10th on the all-time Sacramento scoring list with 5,029 career points.

NOTES: The short-handed Lakers played without F/G Xavier Henry, who sat out for the third time in four games with a torn ligament in his left wrist and a sore right knee. G Steve Nash (nerve root irritation in his ankle) and G Jordan Farmar (groin) also sat out. Los Angeles has played all but six games this season without G Kobe Bryant (fractured left knee), and Nash has played in only 13. … Los Angeles used its 33rd starting lineup of the season, with G Kent Bazemore, C Jordan Hill, F Ryan Kelly and G Kendall Marshall joining G Jodie Meeks, the only one of the five to have made at least 60 starts this season. … Kings G Ray McCallum made his fifth straight start in place of G Isaiah Thomas (right quad contusion). McCallum averaged 15.3 points and 45.3 minutes in his first four. … C DeMarcus Cousins scored his 5,000th career point in his 284th career game, the fewest amount of games needed by a Kings player to reach the milestone. … Despite Wednesday’s loss, the Lakers won the season series against Sacramento for the seventh time in eight seasons.

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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