March 14, 2012; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings shooting guard Francisco Garcia (32) reacts after scoring a basket against the Detroit Pistons during the second quarter at Power Balance Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE
Welp, good thing the Sacramento Kings locked up coach Keith Smart for the 2012-13 season, because we certainly wouldn't want to see the team check out for the rest of the year! Oh ... wait. The Kings totally disengaged -- or at least that's what appeared to happen -- for the second straight night at home, losing 124-112 to the Detroit Pistons. The Kings had lost 115-89 to the short-handed Warriors at home on Tuesday.
The Kings led 48-32 at one point in the second quarter, but Detroit stormed back to retake a one-point lead at halftime and then beat up the Kings 40-23 in the third to take a commanding lead. Three Pistons scored at least 28 points, with Rodney Stuckey dropping 35 and Greg Monroe springing for 32. The Kings were paced by Tyreke Evans, who had 23 on 9-17 shooting. Jason Thompson had a strong performance with 21 points on 10-12 shooting and 15 rebounds; Marcus Thornton struggled from the floor, but had a team-high six assists.
The defense over the last two games has been completely abysmal. Letting the Warriors without Monta Ellis drop 115, then the league's No. 26-ranked offense to rack up 124 -- it's just embarrassing. Marcus Thornton got smoked by a bigger player in Stuckey. Tyreke got outplayed by a bigger player in Tayshaun Prince (28 points). No one -- not DeMarcus Cousins, Thompson or Chuck Hayes -- could handle Monroe.
Back to the first paragraph: I'm not blaming Smart -- far from it. I'm just noting that when you have a terrible team, it doesn't matter if you have a lame duck coach or not. You're still going to lose a lot, and at times badly. This is a terrible team. End of story.