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Barea, bench spark Wolves in 92-80 win vs. Kings

Associated Press Modified: November 2, 2012 at 11:03 pm •  Published: November 2, 2012
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The reserves led the Wolves on a 12-0 spurt to regain command of the game. With Stiemsma's long arms and soft touch in the post, Barea's quickness and confidence and the varied contributions by Cunningham and Chase Budinger, the second group sure looked sharper than the first. Minnesota's bench outscored Sacramento's 46-28 and held a 26-17 rebounding edge, too.

"Part of growing up with this team is not to take the quick shots at that particular point, to focus on what you need at that moment, and obviously it didn't happen," Kings coach Keith Smart said.

He was happy with his defense. The Kings were by far the easiest team to score against in 2011-12, allowing an average of more than 104 points per game.

"Once we attack the basket, I think we can get more fouls," Evans said. "That's what they did: They attacked the basket, and they got a lot of calls."

Cousins had just 11 points and four rebounds. Evans, who had 21 points and eight rebounds in Sacramento's opener, finished with six points on 3-for-14 shooting.

The Kings have a streak of six straight losing seasons that coincides with the amount of time since coach Rick Adelman was fired. Now he's with the Wolves, trying to turn them into the perennial playoff team he had in Sacramento. If he can pull this off without Rubio (left knee surgery) and Love (broken right hand) for at least the first month of the season, the job will be all the more impressive.

The sharp-dressed men behind the bench — Rubio was in a charcoal suit coat; Love wore dark gray — didn't see the prettiest performance. But they saw some real grit.

"We just picked it up, didn't let it bother us and we went on a run of ourselves. That's the NBA game right there," Barea said.

NOTES: Roy played 30 minutes. "It's good to know that I was able to handle it well. My knees felt great, besides some cramps. First game back, I'm excited going forward," he said. ... Kings swingman John Salmons has rejoined the team after a two-week absence to be with his wife and newborn child, but he's not ready for game action yet. Smart said his conditioning needs to be built back up before he'll use him. ... This was the fourth time in seven years that the Timberwolves opened their season at home against the Kings. Sacramento was the opponent for six of the franchise's 24 openers.