Cousins leads Kings into New Orleans

DeMarcus Cousins hopes to build on one of his best games as high third straight victory tonight in the Big Easy against the New Orleans Hornets.

Cousins had his first career 20-20 game, recording 21 points and a career-high 20 rebounds on Saturday when the Kings edged Golden State in overtime, 114-106, at Power Balance Pavilion.

John Salmons scored 14, including the go-ahead three-pointer to start the extra frame for the Kings, who have won two straight after dropping five in a row. Marcus Thornton totaled 28 points and Tyreke Evans 26 for the Kings, who also received 15 points and 16 rebounds from Jason Thompson.

"When it comes along and develops, they're going to be pretty good," Sacramento coach Keith Smart said of his starting lineup. "All those guys in that lineup bring something that's very positive on both sides of the ball."

Sacramento, which is just 2-11 as the visitor on the year, will be playing eight of its next 10 games on the road.

The Hornets, who are kicking off a four-game homestand tonight, have lost five straight after Saturday's 89-87 heartbreaker at Detroit. Trevor Ariza paced the Hornets attack with 26 points in that one and Greivis Vasquez added 14 points and nine assists as the Hornets also dropped their sixth straight road game.

New Orleans has now lost 14 of its last 15 contests overall.

"Well, this is the dog days of the NBA right now," said Hornets head coach Monty Williams. "A lot of players are kind of going through the motions and tired and we certainly looked that way tonight. I thought we'd be a bit fresher because I gave them the day off yesterday and maybe that hurt us."

On the injury front for New Orleans, forward Carl Landry went down in the third quarter in Detroit with a second degree MCL sprain in his left knee and is expected to miss three to four weeks. Meanwhile, center Jason Smith suffered a concussion in the fourth quarter and listed as day-to-day.

The team could get a boost up front, however, with the possible return of Chris Kaman. After failing to work out a trade for the veteran, the Hornets have brought him back into the fold and he will be eligible to play tonight.

"For a number of reasons, including the team's decision to give more time to younger players, we had thought it best for Chris to work out on his own at as we made efforts to trade him," said Hornets General Manager Dell Demps. "However, following discussions with Chris, we have since concluded that being with the team is better for both Chris and the team, particularly our younger players who benefit from his experience and skill level.

"Chris has been working out daily over the past week and is in game condition," Demps added.

Finally, guard Jarrett Jack, who has missed the last two games with a sore left knee, is questionable for the Hornets.

New Orleans, which is just 2-11 at home on the season, has won five straight and 11 of 12 in the Big Easy against Sacramento.