Jason Thompson ended the Kings’ four-game trip in the starting lineup at power forward after being benched for two games.
Coach Tyrone Corbin started Ryan Hollins on Wednesday at Boston and Derrick Williams on Thursday at Minnesota in Thompson’s place. After not playing against the Celtics, Thompson played 24 minutes against the Timberwolves, making a key jump shot in the final minutes that helped the Kings win.
Sunday, Thompson started against Detroit and its power forward/center tandem of Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond.
Thompson started the first 31 games of the season, but there’s no guarantee he’ll remain a starter as Corbin tinkers with the lineup and rotation.
“I thought (Thompson) did a great job of just being ready,” Corbin said. “He made a big shot for us down the stretch in the (Minnesota) game. It gives us some versatility. Even if he starts, he can still back up the (center) spot sometimes.”
Thompson had nine points, seven rebounds and three blocks in the Kings’ l14-95 loss to the Pistons.
“I just want to play and be effective for my team on both ends of the floor,” Thompson said. “Any way I’m able to do that is definitely helpful to the team.”
Homecoming activities – Guard Ray McCallum made sure all Kings personnel on the trip had a chance to enjoy some of his hometown.
McCallum, who played at Detroit Country Day and Detroit Mercy, invited the team to his family’s home for dinner Saturday. The team toured the Motown Museum in Detroit on Friday.
McCallum’s father, Ray, the coach at Detroit-Mercy, participated in the pregame activities by presenting the officials with the game ball.
Still ailing – Guard Ramon Sessions (low back strain) and forward Omri Casspi (left knee bone contusion) missed Sunday’s game.
Sessions has missed six games because of the injury but is improving, Corbin said. Casspi has missed the past two games and six overall because of the injury.
“Omri thought he felt better when he came back, but it flared up on him again,” Corbin said. “We’ll see what the next step is for him.”
Moreland surgery – Forward Eric Moreland underwent season-ending surgery Saturday to repair torn cartilage in his left shoulder. Dr. Arthur Ting performed the operation in Fremont.
Moreland will begin rehabilitation immediately and is expected to be ready for summer league in July.