Reprinted from yesterday's late editions
The Washington Bullets humbled the Kansas City Kings, 112-93, last night at Capital Centre for their eighth straight victory and increased their Central Division lead over Cleveland and Houston to one full game.
The Rockets were idle last night while the Cavaliers' game with the Buffalo Braves was postponed because of bad weather.
The Bullets now have won 14 of 16 games, but must leave friendly Capital Centre for a seven-game, 15-day trip west. They will make their first stop Wednesday night in Denver.
"This is right where you'd want to be going into that trip," Bullets coach Dick Motta said. "Were playing solid basketball. I know what I'm seeing. I am really excited, really feel good about this team."
Phil Chenier and Elvin Hayes played their usual steady games, Chenier had 26 points and six assists while Hayes had 24 points, 12 rebounds and five blocked shots.
Rookie Mitch Kupchak gave the Bullets their biggest lift, however, when he moved to forward to replace Hayes, in foul trouble, in the second quarter and scored 11 of his 22 points.
Normally the backup center, Kupchak has been used more and more at forward. Last night he made nine of 11 shots from there while bringing down seven rebounds. He also dove after loose balls and ran until he couldn't keep his head up.
His enthusiasm spread to the rest of the team and the Bullets looked like they were having a good time taking the Kings in front of 9,403 approving spectators.
The first period ended in a 24-all tie after the Bullets blew a nine-point lead. The second quarter belonged to Washington.
Baskets by Ollie Johnson around a Hayes jumper gave the Kings a 29-27 lead, but eight minutes later, the Bullets were on top, 52-35, having out-scored the bewildered Kings, 25-6.
Hayes scored on a layup after a dandy pass from Chenier to tie the score. Tom Henderson hit a 12-footer and Hayes put in an offensive rebound, while the Kings were turning the ball over three straight times.
Kupchak took over from the next seven Bullet Points while all Kansas City could show was a hook shot by Richard Washington.
Kupchak was scoring from inside and out when he ran out of gas, Chenier took over and scored eight straight points, six coming on 20 foot jump shots.
The Bullet's biggest lead in the period was 18 points following Henderson's drive down the lane with Scott Wedman clawing at him.
The Bullets shot 64 per cent in the period and took a 57-41 lead into the dressing room at halftime.
Things went pretty much the bullets' way after intermission except for a spell late in the third quarter when the Kings closed to seven points.
On offensive rebound by Wes Unseld and a 16-footer by Henderson got the lead back to 11, Kupchak scored nine points in the fourth quarter and the Bullets coasted in.
Kevin Grevey and Leonard Gray, the Bullets tandem at small forward who have averaged 27.5 points and 10.3 rebounds a game since Leonard Robinson was traded away, failed to produce for the first time.
Grevey had only eight points. Gray fouled out without scoring. Grevey suffered a painful hip pointer to go with his sprained ankle and was hurting much of the second half, although he continued to play.
Larry Wright, who had a badly bruised thigh, played with it heavily taped and scored 16 points, many coming on breakaways where he would release early and take long passes from Hayes or Unseld.
Henderson played 23 minutes, his most as a Bullet, and scored eight points with four assists.