(Sports Network) - The rebuilding New Jersey Nets will aim for their second straight win at their new temporary home when they host the Sacramento Kings this evening at the Prudential Center.
Ascending center Brook Lopez scored 25 points and grabbed nine rebounds on Wednesday, as the Nets used last-second heroics to beat the Detroit Pistons, 101-98, in the season opener for both teams.
Devin Harris finished with 22 points and nine assists for the Nets, who started their 2009-10 season by losing their first 18 games en route to the worst record in the NBA at 12-70. Anthony Morrow added 13 points while Terrence Williams and Jordan Farmar both had 10 points off the bench in the win.
Trailing by seven, 95-88, after a Richard Hamilton baseline three-pointer, the Nets went on a 13-3 run to finish the game.
"When (Hamilton) made that shot we didn't drop our heads, we came down and got a big bucket from Jordan (Farmar) and from that we buckled down defensively." said Harris.
The Kings also won their first game in Minneapolis on Wednesday despite playing without the reigning Rookie of the Year Tyreke Evans. Carl Landry paced a balanced attack with 22 points and 11 rebounds in that one as, Sacramento overcame the suspension of its top scorer to defeat the Minnesota Timberwolves, 117-116, at Target Center.
Francisco Garcia also had 22 points for the Kings, who were without Evans after he was suspended for the season opener following an off-court incident that involved him speeding down the highway. Sacramento is expected to have the star guard back for tonight's game, however.
Beno Udrih provided 18 points and six assists. Top pick DeMarcus Cousins was solid in his debut, adding 14 points and eight rebounds in the winning effort.
"It was great. It was a great season-opening game," Udrih said. "I remember the last few years starting with 0-3, 0-4. Basically, we were just chasing .500. So, it's big to start with a win, and hopefully we can win a couple more."
New Jersey, which finished a miserable 8-33 at the IZOD Center last year, didn't record its second home win until Dec. 30 of last year and will be facing a Kings club trying to improve on its 7-34 mark away from ARCO Arena in 2009-10.