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Kings 112, Pistons 102: No blown leads this time

Once Sacramento developed the lead in the first quarter, they never gave it back.

Kimani Okearah

The Sacramento Kings played a solid basketball game for a full 48 minutes, something they failed to do in their last game against the Phoenix Suns. The Kings developed a 34-21 lead after the first quarter as well as multiple 20-point leads. Not once did Detroit come back to take the lead as Sacramento won their 21st game of the season. Not having Blake Griffin certainly played a factor but the Kings will take it.

The first quarter went really well for the Kings, but it would be a different story if the Pistons were making their threes. Detroit was 3-12 from deep in the first quarter. De’Aaron Fox had a fast start, hitting a three, almost getting a steal and then a chasedown block to cap off an eight point quarter on 3-3 shooting. Harry Giles came off the bench and had six points and two blocks. Marvin Bagley also came in and scored four points and grabbed three rebounds. We saw Fox, Bagley, Giles, Bogdan Bogdanovic and Buddy Hield all on the court together as well. Kings led 34-21.

Sacramento put together another good first half, which has been the case the last two and a half games. They built a 22-point lead at one point but former King Langston Galloway drilled a tough three at the buzzer to make it 65-48 at the half. Willie Cauley-Stein had a nice first half with nine points, ten rebounds, three assists and one block. Hield also had nine points on 4-8 shooting. Yogi Ferrell was good off the bench with eight points on 3-4 shooting, three rebounds and one assist. He should’ve had two assists but Nemanja Bjelica missed a layup. Fox didn’t play much in the second quarter due to three fouls, but Yogi got the job done. Stanley Johnson led Detroit off the bench with nine points on 3-5 shooting in 14 minutes. Detroit was 6-21 from three, which is why the first half wasn’t as close.

Each team scored 26 in the third quarter so the lead was 91-74 after three quarters. Hield took his point total to 18 on 8-13 shooting and Cauley-Stein was filling up the stat sheet with 14 points, 13 rebounds, five assists and two blocks on 5-10 shooting. Iman Shumpert had 13 points in his first game back from a finger sprain. Rookie Bruce Brown led Detroit with 13 points.

The fourth quarter was mainly the backups getting minutes for Sacramento as they were outscored 28-21 and the final score doesn’t really show the whole story of this blowout. The Pistons made some runs but Dave Joerger used his timeouts wisely and there were no blown leads this time. Sacramento is now 21-21 on the season as they get the win in the first meeting with Detroit.

Best Players

Buddy Hield led the Kings in scoring with 18 points on 8-13 shooting. He also grabbed two rebounds. I enjoyed watching Hield’s midgame jumpshots always go in. Such a beautiful shot.

Harry Giles(!) played 23 minutes today and filled the stat sheet. Other than some forced passes (five total turnovers) and four fouls, he was amazing. Giles had 14 points, four rebounds, three assists, two steals and three blocks.

Marvin Bagley also had a solid game in 20 minutes of limited action. He had 10 points on 4-5 shooting, eight rebounds, one assist and two steals. This combo of Giles and Bagley is going to be fantastic.

Willie Money Watch

A solid outing from Willie today. He out-rebounded Andre Drummond in six less minutes. Drummond averages 15 rebounds a game, the best in the NBA. Willie had 14 points, 14 rebounds, five assists and two blocks. Drummond had 11 rebounds.

Notable Stats

Kings were 51/41/75 shooting as a team tonight.

Sacramento out-rebounded Detroit 47-37 and out-assisted them 29-22.

Turnovers were a problem again for the Kings, as they had 20 total. Luckily, the Pistons also had 20 turnovers which the Kings scored 34 points from.

The Game in One Sentence

Marvin Bagley is back and another double-digit win.

Next Game

Sacramento welcomes the Charlotte Hornets this Saturday at 7:00 PM PST. The Hornets are 19-21 on the season and 5-13 on the road.