The Sacramento Kings played host to the Detroit Pistons on Sunday, with the return of former second overall pick Marvin Bagley. The Pistons are struggling and were missing Cade Cunningham and Saddiq Bey to injuries. Could the Kings take care of business and extend their winning streak to six?
Outcome: Kings win, 137-129
Sacramento Kings: 137 pts, 55.3% fg, 34.3% 3 pt, 88.6% ft, 29 ast, 41 reb, 11 to
Detroit Pistons: 129 pts, 52.8% fg, 51.7% 3pt, 87.0% ft, 20ast, 35 reb, 12 to
This was an ugly, ugly game. The Pistons were on fire from deep despite normally being one of the worst-shooting teams in the NBA. Domantas Sabonis had the absolute crap beat out of him by Detroit, often as the refs swallowed their whistles. The Kings struggled mightily from beyond the arc. And yet despite all of this, they never gave up, fought and clawed their way back, and emerged with their sixth straight victory.
The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly
- Classic Harry B: Harrison Barnes was huge in this game, finishing with 27 points, 9 rebounds, and 3 assists. It felt like every time the Kings were sputtering and needed a basket, Barnes was there to pick up the slack
- Late-game execution: In what is quickly becoming a trend, the Kings really tightened up their defensive and offensive execution late in the game to secure the victory. I'd prefer they execute better earlier in the game so we wouldn't need the late-game heroics, but we'll take progress one step at a time.
- Bully Ball Domas: As mentioned, Sabonis got beat up in this game. He had a cut on his arm that caused a game stoppage. He got a cut behind his ear that required him to get treated in the locker room. He got clocked upside the head in a play where somehow HE was called for the foul. And yet, despite the evident frustration with the refs, Domas was huge. He finished with15 points, 13 rebounds, and 7 assists.
- Shooting Woes: The Kings shot just 34.3% from deep this game. Huerter finished 411 (but a few of those makes came late, right when they were needed) and Keegan Murray was 1-6. The team just wasn't hitting their looks tonight, and that's bound to happen from time to time over the course of 82 games. But it was painful to watch
- Defense: The Kings were giving the Pistons open looks from deep, which on paper seemed like a sound strategy except the Pistons kept making everything. But if you're leaving the arc open, you need to be protecting the paint and the Kings simply weren't. Bojan Bogdanovic and Jaden Ivey were getting to the rim with ease the entire game.
- The Officiating: If I was the Kings front office, I'd be sending montages of blown calls into the league office after each game. The inconsistency of what the Kings get called for compared to what their opponents get away with is staggering. On a late play that will on tomorrow's two-minute report, Kevin Huerter was called for a foul because the shooter hit Huerter in the side of the face with the ball. Luckily the Kings overcame the officiating and won anyway.
The King of Kings
Is there any doubt? It's De'Aaron Fox, who once again was dominant. Clutch free throws, big threes, big dunks, engaged defense, Fox did it all tonight. He finished with 33 points, 7 assists, and 4 rebounds. Simply put, the Kings don't win this game without Fox going Star Fox in the 4th.
@ Memphis Grizzlies, Tuesday, November 22nd, 5:00 PM PT