SACRAMENTO -- There is a recurring theme to the 2018-19 Sacramento Kings season. Buddy Hield hits shots and the Kings win.
Friday night at Golden 1 Center, Hield couldn't hit water if he fell out of a boat through the first three quarters and the Kings fell behind by as many as 19. The 26-year-old shooting guard walked into the fourth with 12 points, but on just 4-of-16 shooting.
"We call that throwing it in the ocean, that's what Buddy Hield does," Iman Shumpert said. "Whether Buddy is 1-for-20 or 4-for-60, at the end of the game, if I see his numbers and he's open, he's getting the ball, because he's going to make the shot."
Hield got hot. Red hot. He checked in for Nemanja Bjelica at the nine minute mark of the fourth and hit a 3-pointer 27 seconds later.
After a series of mistakes and misses from the Kings, Hield took over at the 6:33 mark, scoring another eight points over the next 1:01 of the game.
"Whether he's shooting bad or shooting it good, the whole bench stands up when he lets it go," Shumpert said. "Cause everybody believes that Buddy's going to shoot it at that high clip. We don't need everybody else to believe it. We don't need anybody else to support it. I had to play pick up against him -- he's a nightmare."
The "nightmare" dropped 16 of his game-high 28 points in the fourth quarter, as Sacramento erased a nine-point deficit in the final 12 minutes to come away with a huge 102-99 victory.
"Just keep swing, man, just keep swinging," coach Dave Joerger said. "We're finding him, we're looking for him when he's hot. If he hasn't got one for a while, maybe he hunts it a little bit."
If Hield was hunting in the fourth, he came away with enough to feed a village. He shot 4-of-5 from 3-point range in the quarter and 6-of-13 from long distance overall.
Hield's two makes from the free throw line with 3.9 seconds remaining sealed the deal and helped push his team to a surprising 17-15 record on the season.
"That's what I'm here for, that's why they brought me here and you've just got to relish the moment," Hield said.
With the scoring outburst, Hield is now averaging a career-best 20.1 points per game. He's scored 20-or-more in six consecutive games, including a career-high of 37 in Wednesday's loss to Oklahoma City.