Monk’s big 4th quarter lifts Hornets over Kings 110-102

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Malik Monk scored 14 of his season-high 23 points in the fourth quarter, and the Charlotte Hornets spoiled De’Aaron Fox’s return from injury with a 110-102 win over the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday night.

Cody Zeller had 17 points and nine rebounds, and Bismack Biyombo added 10 points and 12 rebounds as the Hornets (13-17) won for the fourth time in five games.

Fox was back on the floor after missing 17 games with left ankle sprain and led the Kings (12-15) with 19 points. He played 30 minutes despite supposedly being on a minutes restriction.

On a night when Devante Graham and Terry Rozier shot a combined 5 of 21 through the first three quarters, the Hornets needed someone to step up.

Monk did that to start the fourth quarter.

He scored eight straight points, including a pair of 3s from the same spot just a few feet left of the top of the key. Graham then started to get going, knocking down two straight 3-pointers and suddenly the Hornets led by 10 with six minutes left as part of a 23-11 run to begin the fourth. Monk added two more on a drive to the hole and then put an exclamation point on the victory, sneaking through the lane and dunking off a missed 3 by Rozier with 42 seconds left.

Monk finished the fourth quarter 5 of 5 from the field, including two 3-pointers. He also made both free throws and had five rebounds in the final period. He finished with a career-high 10 boards.


Kings: Marvin Bagley had 14 points and seven rebounds off the bench in 22 minutes. … Sacramento was outrebounded 51-33.

Hornets: Played without P.J. Washington, who sat out with a broken finger, and forward Nic Batum (hand). … Started both of its centers in Zeller and Biyombo. … Scored 52 points in the paint.


Kings: Travel to Indiana to face the Pacers on Friday night.

Hornets: At the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday for the second night of a back-to-back.