Bennett and Cavs cruise by Kings
Cleveland, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - The much-maligned Anthony Bennett is starting to turn the corner.
The No. 1 overall pick tallied his first career double-double in his 40th career game.
Bennett had 19 points and 10 rebounds and the Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Sacramento Kings, 109-99, on Tuesday night.
Bennett finally cracked the double-digit scoring barrier in his 33rd career game with 15 points, but has surpassed that plateau three other times since -- including Tuesday.
"All the hard work I've put in with the coaching staff and the players is paying off," Bennett said.
The last four No. 1 overall picks all recorded double-digit points in either their first or second game.
"He's just now starting to be who you guys are going to see a lot of in the future," Cavs head coach Mike Brown said of Bennett. "He's a good basketball player."
Luol Deng netted a game-high 22 points, Dion Waiters tallied 20 points and eight assists and Tristan Thompson added 16 points and 13 boards for the Cavaliers, who have won three straight for the second time this season.
Cleveland had lost six in a row prior to the winning streak.
DeMarcus Cousins had 21 points and 10 rebounds for Sacramento, which has dropped 10 of its last 12.
"They blew by us all night long. No resistance. I'm very disappointed in our effort, competitive spirit and togetherness," Kings head coach Mike Malone said.
The game was tied 13-13 midway through the first, but the Cavs outscored the Kings 17-10 the rest of the frame and took a 30-23 advantage into the second, where they further extended their margin.
Henry Sims capped a mini 7-2 spurt with a hook shot for a 45-32 cushion, Cleveland's largest to that point, during the middle stages of the stanza.
The Cavs took a 55-43 advantage into the locker room and held an 80-68 spread going into the fourth, where the Kings never cut the deficit below seven.
Cleveland led by as many as 18 ... The Cavs outrebounded the Kings, 45-36 ... Cleveland shot 47.7 percent (41-of-86) from the field and 57.1 percent (12- of-21) from beyond the arc ... Isaiah Thomas had 16 points and eight helpers for Sacramento.