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Hornets deliver uninspiring performance against Pistons, lose 116-77

In their first game since officially being eliminated from the playoffs, the Hornets faced off with the Detroit Pistons in a Sunday afternoon affair in the Palace at Auburn Hills.

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

To start the month of the April, the Hornets went in a fight to keep their playoff hopes alive. On April 1, the Detroit Pistons entered Time Warner Cable Arena as Charlotte was surrounded by a must-win opportunity. That night, the Pistons fell behind early as the Hornets blew out Detroit 102-78 to gain a much-needed victory.

Fast forward nine days and those playoff hopes officially came to an end as the Hornets lost to Atlanta Friday night, 104-80. In their first game of the season where they legitmatelly had nothing to play for, the Hornets faced those very same Pistons.

Like the Pistons had done 11 days earlier in Charlotte, the Hornets got down early and could never recover, delivering an uninspiring performance in Auburn Hills, The Hornets were drubbed 116-77 Sunday afternoon.

Al Jefferson, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Lance Stephenson, and Cody Zeller were all ruled out of the game. The Hornets started Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson, Jeffery Taylor, Marvin Williams, and Bismack Biyombo.

Detroit's Andre Drummond had eight points and nine rebounds in the first nine minutes of the game, helping the Pistons earn a quick 19-8 lead. The first quarter ended and that lead had ballooned 20 points, 30-10.

At one point in the second quarter, the Pistons had hit their sixth 3-pointer, giving them 18 points on just those shots and the Hornets had a total of 19. Detroit led at the half 59-34.

Mo Williams did not play, coaches decision, and starter Marvin Williams' playing time tailed off in the third quarter. Noah Vonleh finished with 16 points, eclipsing his career high in the third quarter. The Hornets entered the fourth down 84-52.

A scary moment occurred in the fourth quarter when Drummond fell after a shot and as he came down, he rolled up on PJ Hairston's right knee and ankle. The rookie wing was writhing in pain on the court and had to be helped off the floor by two teammates. He was taken to the lockerrom for x-rays but there is no matter yet on those or the injury in general.

Vonleh added 12 rebounds to his career-high 16 points, giving himself his first career double-double.  Kemba finished with seven points and seven assists. Gerald Henderson and Jeffery Taylor were the only starters in double-figures, scoring 14 and 10 points respectively. Brian Roberts had 11 points, three assists, two boards, and a steal off the bench.

With only two games remaining, the Hornets head home for the Hive's finale in its return season. Charlotte welcomes the Houston Rockets and MVP candidate James Harden.