DeMarcus Cousins

Sacramento Kings coach Keith Smart called DeMarcus Cousins ”the guy who makes it all work for us.”

Friday night’s performance was the perfect example of that.

Cousins scored a season-high 31 points and matched his career high with 20 rebounds, John Salmons scored eight of his 20 points in the fourth quarter and the Kings topped the Toronto Raptors 105-96.

”He had the right energy to start the game, he had the right mindset of not trying to score 50 but trying to let his teammates play,” Smart said of Cousins. ”He’s in a good spot as a basketball player right now and he’s only going to get better.”

Salmons said Cousins is helping the Kings win by trusting his teammates and giving up the ball when he gets double-teamed…

Jason Thompson scored 14 points and Isaiah Thomas had 11 as the Kings won their second straight road game. They’d gone 1-13 away from home before winning at Cleveland on Wednesday…

Kyle Lowry scored 24 points and Ed Davis had 11 points and 13 rebounds for the Raptors, who came in having won eight of nine and a season-best five straight at home.

”We did not have an answer for DeMarcus Cousins inside,” said Raptors coach Dwane Casey. ”We did not play with any zip. We were flat.”

Alan Anderson scored 20 points, DeMar DeRozan had 14 and Jose Calderon added 13 for the Raptors, who also lost 107-100 at Sacramento on Dec. 5.

– Reported by Ian Harrison of the Associated Press