Perth Wildcats end Kings' winning streak

Perth Wildcats have sounded a warning to the rest of the NBL after bringing defending champions Sydney Kings' six-game unbeaten streak to an end with an enthralling 111-104 victory.

In one of the most entertaining clashes of the season, the Wildcats moved back to fourth on the NBL ladder, whipping Friday night's capacity crowd at Perth's RAC Arena into a frenzy with a 35-point explosion in the fourth quarter to end a spirited challenge from the ladder leaders.

The Wildcats saw an 11-point lead wiped out by a rampant Sydney outfit in the third quarter but responded in style with a match-winning run of 17 unanswered points early in the final period to set up their third win on the trot.

Bryce Cotton and Brady Manek each scored 21 points and TaShawn Thomas added 20 as the Wildcats (13-10) inched closer to securing their spot in the new NBL Play-In Tournament, trailing third-placed New Zealand Breakers (13-10) on percentage.

John Rillie's decision to shorten his rotation and hand big minutes to his top seven players has paid dividends during Perth's recent hot streak as the first-year coach aims to guide the Wildcats back into the play-offs after missing the cut last season.

"When we play with a nice pace about ourselves and share the ball, we're a good offensive team," Rillie said after Perth connected on 17-of-35 three-pointers to topple the highest-scoring team in the league.

"We still have some possessions where we massage the ball a little too much for my liking but when we move it and get into the paint, you can see everyone benefits when we move the ball with the great pace."

The Wildcats led throughout the first half but DJ Vasiljevic came to life in the third quarter as the Kings used a 32-point surge to build an 80-76 lead then Angus Glover opened the final stanza with a three-pointer to extend Sydney's advantage to seven.

But Perth swung the momentum in their favour as Cotton completed a four-point play then followed up triples from Manek and Luke Travers with another long bomb to put the Wildcats ahead 93-83.

While the Kings rallied to trail by three inside the final minute, they were unable to create an opportunity for a game-tying three-pointer on their next possession.

Vasiljevic hit six triples in his game-high 26-point haul and Xavier Cooks compiled 15 points, nine rebounds and eight assists with the Kings (17-6) still on target for an automatic semi-final berth with a top-two finish.