Detroit — Just when it appeared as if the Pistons were trending toward their second consecutive win, they gave up a 38-point third quarter to the Sacramento Kings to reverse their fortunes.
It was a game marred by foul trouble, scoring runs and lackadaisical transition defense as Detroit suffered a 122-113 loss to Sacramento on Friday night.
The Pistons held an eight-point lead at halftime, but Sacramento went on a 17-4 run to start the third quarter. Eight of those points were scored by Keegan Murray, who knocked down a couple of triples and a pair of free throws to give the Kings the momentum. Both of Detroit’s field goals in that span were alley-oop dunks to rookie center Jalen Duren.
After Sacramento’s run reached 23-6, boos began to rang out inside Little Caesars Arena. Detroit trailed by as many as 12, but eventually regained its composure and climbed back within seven points to end the third quarter.
Sacramento was led by De’Aaron Fox, who finished with 24 points, five rebounds and nine assists. Fox scored 33 points to lead the Kings to a win over the Pistons on Nov. 20. He punctuated the win with a ferocious dunk with two minutes left in the game.
BOX SCORE: Kings 122, Pistons 113
Kings center Damontas Sabonis flirted with a triple-double with 21 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists. Murray, the No. 4 overall draft pick, scored 20 points on 7-of-13 shooting from the field. The rookie forward was extremely efficient from the perimeter, knocking down 4-of-6 from the 3-point line.
The Kings had seven different players score in double figures, including Murray, Sabonis, Fox, Harrison Barnes (19) and Kevin Huerter (13), Malik Monk (11) and Terrance Davis (10).
Bojan Bogdanovic led the Pistons with 22 points while Duren added a double-double of 15 points and 14 rebounds. Saddiq Bey added 14 points off the bench. Isaiah Stewart scored 13 points and grabbed six rebounds.
“I feel like they just came out ready to play,” Duren said after the game. “They came out and hit a lot of shots. Like coach (Casey) said in the locker room, we just gotta be ready to play coming out the half to close out teams.”
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Marvin Bagley III, who was traded to Detroit by the Kings last season shortly before the trade deadline, played with a chip on his shoulder and led the Pistons’ bench with 13 points and six rebounds. The former No. 2 overall pick was aggressive in his is drives to the basket and patient when posting up Sabonis and the rest of the Kings’ big men.
Alec Burks finished with just seven points on Friday. He left the game and went to the locker room for a brief moment during the second quarter with an apparent elbow injury. However, he returned to the bench with five minutes left before the half time break and played through the pain.
Duren continued his dominant stretch of rebounding on Friday, finishing with a career-high 15 points and 14 boards. It was another excellent performance after he collected a career-high 19 rebounds against the Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday. He accounted for 10 of Detroit’s 25 rebounds in the first half alone.
“Just trying to outwork my opponent and get on the glass,” Duren said of his rebounding. “I know a lot of teams are starting to realize that I’m crashing (the boards) every time but that’s just me trying to use my motor and get on the glass to help my team.”
The Pistons’ backcourt of Killian Hayes and Jaden Ivey were limited throughout Friday’s game due to foul trouble. Both guards picked up three fouls each, which led to an extended amount of playing time for Cory Joseph and Alec Burks.
Ivey fouled out of the game with three minutes and 34 seconds left in the game, totaling just five points, three rebounds and five assists. Hayes had five fouls and finished with 11 points and four assists.
Joseph was productive in his time on the floor in the first half. The veteran point guard finished with six points, three rebounds and five assists.
The Kings scored 18 fast break points on Friday against the Pistons’ six.
Detroit (8-23) will look to rebound against the Brooklyn Nets on Sunday.firstname.lastname@example.org