Killian Hayes Shines in Pistons Loss to Lakers 128-121
The Detroit Pistons came into Friday night desperate for a win. Coming into the second game of a back to back and off a five game losing streak, Detroit was hungry to turn their fortunes. Not only have the Pistons lost multiple games, but they’ve lost multiple key players to injury as well. Key players such as Cade Cunningham and Isaiah Stewart were yet again absent, and their absence was yet again felt. And despite a career performance from Killian Hayes and solid contributions from others, it was yet again not enough.
The Pistons ultimately fall short in the fourth quarter, losing to the Lebron-less Lakers 128-121. Anthony Davis has long experienced good fortune against Detroit, and Friday night was no exception. The All-Star big finished with 38 points and 16 rebounds, also notching four blocks. Davis did the majority of his damage at the free throw line, getting to the charity strike for a staggering 21 attempts. Detroit was dealing with foul trouble within the first two minutes of the game, as Marvin Bagley notched two fouls in a minute and a half.
Jalen Duren, who turned 19 on the day of this game, checked in and notched two fouls in two minutes himself. As a whole, the Lakers drew 30 fouls and got to the free throw line for 40 attempts. The bad defense from the Pistons is not from a lack of effort. But rather, from high effort plays leading to mistakes and fouls. In the second half down the stretch, Detroit lost another key player to injury, this time being Saddiq Bey. Although there is no diagnosis at this time, Bey left the game with an apparent ankle injury, stepping on a player and turning his foot.
Casey said the team isn't sure on the status of Bey's ankle yet. "He turned it pretty good."
Pistons lead by Killian Hayes, Bojan Bogdanovic, Alec Burks
If the Pistons are to take any solic from their sixth straight loss, it’s the continued play of Killian Hayes. The third year guard finished with a confident 18 points and nine assists, shooting four for six from beyond the arc. On the offensive end, he was confident with his decision making, and was constantly making the right decisions. His passing was crisp, his shots were falling, and he looked like his confidence was growing. And even though he had strong sequences on the defensive end, he struggled with foul trouble as well. Hayes ended up fouling out in the closing minutes. Bojan Bogdanovic wasn’t able to get his shot going from beyond the arc, but he was able to still put up 20 points and six rebounds.
Alec Burks in his fourth game back had his best performance to date as a Piston. Burks finished with a team high 23 points and went five for eight from beyond the arc. The veteran marksman was firing at will, and showcased his ability to score all over the court. Him and Hamidou Diallo of late have been two of the most solid contributors for Detroit off of the bench. Burks effect is felt on the offensive end, with Diallo making his presence felt on both ends. Hamidou had 13 points with some early looks in the fast break, and helped make stops that lead to easy points. And although Isaiah Livers has still not been able to get his offense going, his defensive effort is still being felt.
Detroit faces red-hot Kings on Sunday
Very rarely on a west coast road trip do you find your toughest test to be in Sacramento. However, that very well might be the case for the Pistons on this voyage in California. The Sacramento Kings are coming into this contest winning five in a row, and eight of their last ten. They are red hot on both ends of the court, being lead by Dearon Fox and Damontis Sabonis. One side is coming in red hot, and the other is coming in desperate for a win. It will certainly be a game that Marvin Bagley III has had circled on his calendar for quite some time.