Detroit Pistons blow big early lead to lose at Sacramento Kings, 106-100
By MICHAEL WAGAMAN
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Sacramento’s second unit got the Kings going after a sluggish start put them down by 17 points right out of the gate.
De’Aaron Fox, still bothered by a lingering abdominal injury, provided an equally big lift down the stretch.
Fox scored 11 of his 23 points in the fourth quarter and the Kings rallied to beat the Detroit Pistons 106-100 on Sunday for their fifth straight home victory.
“As a team we came out slow but our bench picked it up and ultimately helped us,” Fox said. “We knew when we came back in the game that we had to pick it up as well because they put us in a better spot than we put ourselves in.”
The Kings were coming off a four-game road trip and didn’t arrive in Sacramento until 3 a.m. Saturday morning. With no practice before Sunday’s game, coach Luke Walton wasn’t surprised by his team’s slow start.
Detroit led 18-1 and 27-6 before the Kings got rolling.
“That’s not how we want to start a ballgame,” Walton said. “On both ends of the court we didn’t have the energy it required. Give a lot of credit to our second unit for coming in and engaging us in that fight finally.”
Buddy Hield added 19 points, Bogdan Bogdanovic scored 15 and Harrison Barnes had 10 points and eight rebounds for Sacramento. Alex Len added 13 points, eight rebounds and five blocks.
Christian Wood had 20 points and 12 rebounds for the Pistons, who lost point guard Derrick Rose to an injury in the first quarter.
Detroit was off to one of its best starts but couldn’t keep up the pace after Rose was hurt. The Pistons fell behind by 10 in the third quarter and were down 102-89.
“I thought we had it going pretty good while he was in the game,” Pistons coach Dwane Casey said. “And when the entire group went out, I thought that’s when (the Kings) started to pick up their aggression and got us back on our heels. “