The Sacramento Kings might not be falling apart, at least not right away, following the return of DeMarcus Cousins and their 101-92 win over the Detroit Pistons, with a little bit of help from Rudy Gay and Rajon Rondo.
Cousins and George Karl might not be getting along, but they might have to bite through the pain as the Kings don’t seem to be in too much of a rush and fire another head coach. Cousins scored 33 points while dominating against his Team USA teammate Andre Drummond, who had “just” 14 points and 17 rebounds, as the Pistons find out that life on a West Coast road trip isn’t very fun.
Besides Cousins, there was Rajon Rondo with 14 points, 11 rebounds and 15 assists. For a player with such a terrible shot, he does take up quite a lot (16) but there are the days when he makes up for it, forcing the defense to actually consider him as a scoring option which makes for some easy assist opportunities. Rudy Gay scored 25 points on 10-of-14 shooting, as the Kings even looked pretty good defensively, holding the Pistons to 38.2% from the field, which helped them get another 14 offensive rebounds. Too bad they didn’t know what to do with them.
The bench for both teams didn’t really contribute. Omri Casspi with 9 points and 11 rebounds was the only thing worth noting for the Kings. The Pistons got 23 points from theirs, which really didn’t matter, as all of their shooters, including leading scorer Reggie Jackson, were struggling to make their shots. Both teams didn’t do a great job of avoiding turnovers, finishing with 34 combined. In the end, the win means a lot more for the Kings than the loss does to the Pistons.
Because 2-7 suddenly looks a lot better than 1-8. An NBA season shouldn’t be about highs and lows, emotional ones, from game to game, but taking batches of them and reviewing them; seeing the trend, a direction, the process. The Kings are hoping to finally start something like that. Some patch of consistency, the good kind. Maybe it’s possible even if the team’s biggest star doesn’t like his head coach, and it seems that the players don’t fit the Karl style of basketball. There’s talent in Sacramento. There’s been for a while, but maybe it’s not too late to do something with it, even under these conditions.