There is no figuring out this Sacramento Kings team. After getting completely dominated on their home floor on Wednesday night, the Kings came out slow and looked completely disinterested in the first half against Detroit. And then the switch went on.
Sacramento gave the Pistons everything they could handle in the second half at the Palace, tying the game multiple times in the fourth quarter. In the end, the Kings didn’t have enough in the tank to overcome an early deficit and the Pistons came away with the 115-108 win.
Marcus Morris brought back memories of the New Orleans’ Ryan Anderson. The combo-forward lit the Kings up from the perimeter, totaling 24 points on 6-for-7 shooting from behind the arc.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope found the Kings’ perimeter defense soft as well. The third-year guard struggled with the 3-ball, but still managed to drop in 23.
Andre Drummond added a 14-point, 11-rebound double-double. Reggie Jackson chipped in 19 points, nine assists and seven rebounds and newly acquired Tobias Harris finished with 17.
DeMarcus Cousins brought his lunch pail to work, scoring a team-high 31 points in the loss. The All-Star center added 10 rebounds and three assists as he punished the Pistons in the post.
Rudy Gay also attacked Detroit’s interior defense, using a variety of moves over the smaller Morris. Gay finished the night with 19 points on 7-for-12 shooting.
George Karl has promised to play the young guys more down the stretch, but on Friday night in Detroit, it was 36-year-old Caron Butler that picked up big minutes. The seldom-used veteran finished the night with nine points on 5-for-5 shooting from the line and added four rebounds in 18 minutes of action.
Rajon Rondo put up a near triple-double, finishing the night with 10 points, 13 assists and eight rebounds. Darren Collison hit for 10 off the bench and Kosta Koufos added nine points and five rebounds in a reserve role.
Morris carried the Pistons in the first half, scoring 20 of his 24 before the break. Caldwell-Pope picked up after the intermission, scoring 12 of his 23 in the second half as the Pistons held on for the win.
The Kings fought the good fight in the second half, but the Pistons found a way to take a lead in the fourth and then cling to it down the stretch.
Willie Cauley-Stein (illness), Omri Casspi (sore ankle) and Ben McLemore (broken right ring finger) all missed the game.
The Kings hop a plane for New York where they will take on the Knicks at Madison Square Garden on Sunday evening.