The Detroit Pistons were hoping the public confrontation between head coach John Kuester and Tayshaun Prince on Monday would somehow make them play better against the world champions. Unfortunately, the Pistons need to quickly find a big man to score inside and to rebound, not Dr. Phil. The Pistons came home from their 4 game West Coast trip and got manhandled by the Lakers - 103-90.
The Pistons started off on the wrong foot. With 7:01 in the first quarter, Pistons guard Rip Hamilton was ejected from the game as he let his emotions get the best of him with the refs. It’s hard to believe someone can get thrown out of a game that early. But the dysfunctional Pistons found a way.
So what went right tonight - well, ummmm, it’s hard to find something. G Rodney Stuckey did have 18 points and 4 assists to lead the Pistons. What went wrong besides Rip being tossed – the Pistons shot an embarrassing 39% from the floor (and yes, they were the home team), the Lakers at one time were up by 26 points in the 4th quarter, and Tracy McGrady hurt his ankle while driving to the lane in the 2nd quarter (even though he did return later in the game).
Kobe Bryant played at an MVP level, finishing with 33 points, nine rebounds and four assists. Pau Gasol had 25 points and 12 rebounds.
The Pistons are off until Sunday when they play rookie sensation John Wall and the Washington Wizards. Wall might not play on Sunday as he is recovering from a sprain left foot. It’s disturbing that the Pistons could not even sell out tonight’s game against the world champions. And sadly, some of tonight’s fans were there to cheer on Kobe and the Lakers. During their time off, they need to find a way to turn this season around or no one will be showing up for any of their games.
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Written by Bob Ballard