Count Kings coach George Karl among the fans of Detroit’s All-Star center, Andre Drummond.
“I respect the man,” Karl said. “A lot of big guys ... drift outside the paint and find ways to get outside the paint. This kid wants to be right there.”
The fourth-year center entered Friday averaging 16.5 points and an NBA-leading 15.0 rebounds per game.
“I love his old-school attitude,” Karl said. “I love him to be in the paint, love him to be on the tip of the rim, love him to get hit and bumped and grind. I mean it’s old school – it’s back to the ’60s almost.”
Never miss a local story.
Drummond (6-11, 279) is built for that style of play. It wouldn’t make much sense for him to lurk on the perimeter when that’s not his strength.
“He’s this big monster that just puts himself in danger,” Karl said. “I don’t know how many times he gets hit in the game. He’s just always moving right to the rim; he’s always fighting for rebounds; he’s always being a good defender.”
New highs – The Kings have helped a lot of teams excel offensively this season.
Sacramento entered Friday night’s game against Detroitat The Palace of Auburn Hills allowing 109.5 points per game, the most in the NBA.
Detroit coach Stan Van Gundy said the Kings’ style of play has a lot to do with that.
“One of the reasons they give up the most points is that they try to play really fast,” Van Gundy said. “There’s a lot of possessions in their games.”
Not that Van Gundy was complaining. The Pistons set season highs for points in a quarter (39, first) and in a first half (67) on Friday.
Busted brackets – A few folks wore Michigan State colors at The Palace hours after the Spartans were eliminated by Middle Tennessee State in the biggest upset of the NCAA Tournament.
Karl, a North Carolina grad, said his bracket was fine.
“I didn’t have Michigan State going far,” he cracked.
Medical report – The Kings are having a hard time keeping a full roster together.
Wednesday night, they were down to three guards.
Friday’s issue was at forward, where Omri Casspi (sore left ankle) and Willie Cauley-Stein (illness) were out.
Cauley-Stein played through the illness Wednesday against New Orleans but was unable to go against the Pistons. That put Quincy Acy back in the starting lineup and led to more playing time for forward Caron Butler.