Kings, Fox look for repeat in rematch vs. Hawks
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Two up-and-coming teams play a rematch of a surprisingly one-sided contest when the Atlanta Hawks visit the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday night.
The Kings rode De'Aaron Fox's first career triple-double to a 146-115 shellacking of the Hawks on Nov. 1 in Atlanta.
The completion of the clubs' two-game season series occurs with the Hawks in the middle of a 13-day, seven-game journey away from the Atlanta-based Super Bowl, while the Kings are tipping off a six-game homestand.
Based solely on the teams' most recent result, the Hawks would have to be encouraged about their chances of avenging the earlier defeat.
They are coming off a 123-118 win at the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday night, one day after the Clippers had taken advantage of a road-weary Kings squad to record a 122-108 home win.
Hawks point guard Trae Young was the star of the show in Los Angeles, after having made national news earlier in the day when he compared himself to Rookie of the Year favorite Luka Doncic, for whom he had been traded on draft night.
All eyes were on Young on the court after he had told ESPN, "I think at the end of the day, (the trade) worked out for both teams. That's how I look at it. I mean, Luka's doing really well. I feel like I'm doing really well as well."
Arguably, he's never played better than with the big-city spotlight on him against the Clippers, when he contributed 26 points and eight assists to the Hawks' victory.
The point total equaled his third-highest of the season, while his 10-for-18 shooting was his eighth-best of the year percentage-wise, with seven of those eight coming on the road.
Young surely wasn't at his best in his first career matchup with Fox in the November game. He was harassed into a season-worst-tying eight turnovers, although he did manage a 14-point, 10-assist double-double, one of 14 he has recorded this season.
The loss was the most lopsided of the year at home for the Hawks.
Fox played a huge role in that. He had 31 points, 10 rebounds and 15 assists, making 9 of 13 shots, including 3 of 4 3-pointers.
The points, rebounds and assists remain as season-highs.
Fox completed the Kings' 11-day, six-game trip with 22 and 21 points in the last two outings. But the wear and tear of the long journey seemed to take a toll in his turnover total, with the second-year standout recording a total of 11 in the matchups with Memphis and the Clippers.
He left no doubt after Sunday's loss that the best part about the trip was the journey home.
"Just being in my own bed, being in my own home; I've got my dogs," he told reporters. "Just not having to get on a plane all the time, that's probably the biggest thing. It's always good to be home."
The Kings (25-25) have won four in a row at home, including 115-107 over Portland when they were last seen in Sacramento on Jan. 14.
The Hawks (16-33) have opened their marathon trip with wins at Chicago and Los Angeles sandwiching a loss at Portland.
--Field Level Media
Updated January 29, 2019