It was a day of firsts on Saturday for the Sacramento Kings, who picked up their first victory on the road and first three-game winning streak of the season.
The Kings will need all that momentum and more on Monday evening as they try to snap a 16-game skid in Dallas against the Mavericks.
In its seventh road game of the season, Sacramento recorded a 99-80 win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday. The Kings shot just 13 percent in the second quarter, but never trailed after halftime thanks in part to a 34-24 scoring edge in the third frame.
DeMarcus Cousins had 19 points and 12 rebounds, while John Salmons also scored 19 and dished out a season-high 11 assists. Aaron Brooks donated 14 points to the win.
"It feels good," Salmons said about getting a road win. "We talked about that before the game today, especially coming off two home wins."
Sacramento won the opener of its four-game road trip despite guard Tyreke Evans sitting out for the fourth time in five games with a bruised left knee. He is questionable for tonight.
The Kings will need all hands on deck as they try for their first victory in Dallas since Feb. 27, 2003. They have lost 11 of their past 12 versus the Mavericks overall.
Dallas could also be a bit shorthanded for this meeting. Still without star forward Dirk Nowitzki because of right knee surgery, Shawn Marion sat out Saturday's 116-109 win over the Houston Rockets because of a strained right groin. That led to the Mavs using their 10th different starting lineup in what was their 20th game.
O.J. Mayo led Dallas' offense with a career high-tying 40 points, 16 of those coming in the fourth quarter when the Mavericks rallied from 11 points down with 9:25 to play. That gave the Mavs their second straight win, third in four games and improved them to 10-10 on the season.
"I was just focused on time and scoring," said Mayo, who hit six 3-pointers and pulled down eight rebounds. "Trying to get to .500 was very important for us and we got there and we have keep continuing to build off of that."
Chris Kaman added 20 points and seven boards while battling through a sprained left ankle that limited him to just 18 1/2 minutes of action. Darren Collison and Vince Carter donated 12 points apiece in the victory.