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Sacramento settles for cheap laughs, loses home opener

Before the game, as the Pistons were being introduced, the Kings ran a series of extremely negative images of Detroit on the giant overhead scoreboard screen. One image after another, abandoned and dilapidated buildings, burned out cars, desolate and garbage-strewn streets, on and on until the introductions were complete.

The Kings are supposed to be a first-class organization, so I'm pretty shocked that something like this happened. But let's keep this in perspective: unlike the Jimmy Kimmel thing, this was not on national television, and probably won't be more than a blip on the national news, if at all.

From what I hear, Sacramento is a kind of a backwoods type of town as California goes, so I'm not completely surprised that some idiot on their A/V production team thought this would be kind of funny. Either way, the Pistons got the last laugh, winning 102-88 in a game that was nowhere near as close as the final score suggests:

Consider that the Pistons hadn't won in Sacramento since 1996 -- eight straight losses. Consider, too, that the Kings' record against Eastern Conference teams since 2001 was 57-3.

And then consider that the Pistons had a 21-point lead with six minutes left, sending the fans streaming to the exits, and you get the magnitude of this performance.

I said yesterday that the bench would have to be active for the Pistons to have the energy to go 3-0 on this trip. Well, birthday boy Mo Evans played 25 minutes, Carlos Arroyo 16 and Antonio McDyess 25. Against his former team, Evans scored 12 points with three boards, an assist, a steal and a block. Tayshaun Prince went nuts in the third quarter by scoring 19 of his 25 points, finishing 3-4 from beyond the arc. It was nice to see Rasheed Wallace not pick up a single personal foul. He may have only scored 10 points, but in 26 minutes he had four boards, three assists, four steals and a block.

Cheap shots motivate Pistons [Detroit News]
Detroit 102, Sacramento 88 box score []