The Celtics dropped their third straight game, losing to the Kings, 118-96, Sunday night in Sacramento. The Celts have lost all three West Coast games over the past four days by a combined 69 points, having also come up short in seven of their last nine contests.
Helping do in the Celtics was their inability to score on the interior, with the Kings outscoring the visitors 56-38 on points in the paint. The Celts also were outrebounded, 45-35.
"Winning is hard. I don't know if all our guys get that," Celtics coach Doc Rivers told reporters. "You have to play hard to win an NBA game. One game. It's difficult and we're not doing it."
The Celtics once again had difficulty stopping their opponent, this time allowing 64 second-half points, while letting the Kings shoot 54 percent from the floor. Sacramento finished with six players scoring in double figures, with the last pick in the 2011 draft, 5-foot-9 guard Isaiah Thomas, leading the way with 27 points.
Said Kevin Garnett: "The reason why guys came back is because of what we built here and that we are known to defend. For some reason, we've gotten away from that. So we're going to have to go back to our origins to figure it out."
Rajon Rondo, who returned after missing a game with an injured hip/thigh, seemed hampered by his ailment, shooting just 1-for-6 from the floor. Jason Terry and Paul Pierce led the way offensively for the Celtics, scoring 20 points apiece.