If the Pistons are going to make the playoffs, games like Wednesday night's are the kind of games they need to win. At home, against a struggling team on the back-end of a back-to-back (Nets had lost four of their last six and 10 straight on the road against Detroit) and, yes, another double-digit lead (13).
But the Pistons are more than likely not going to make the playoffs and Wednesday night's 93-90 loss against the new jerseyed Brooklyn Nets serves as a microcosm of the Pistons' season, a season in which they have displayed a complete failure at finishing.
Up by 10 in the first quarter, the Nets responded with a 14-5 run in the final 2:56 to trim the lead to one, 24-23. In the second quarter, the Pistons' bench built it back up into double digits, but once again, Detroit allowed the Nets to finish the quarter on a 7-0 run and cut into the one-time 13-point lead. The Pistons didn't score in the final two and a half minutes because Will Bynum chucked a horrible three (foreshadowing), Charlie Villanueva missed a three and a layup, and Slava Kravtsov missed a hook.
The Pistons' starters began the second half making five of their first eight shots, but anytime they would threaten to run away, the Nets reeled them back in.
The Nets outscored the Pistons at the end of the quarter again, 9-5, and then started the fourth on a 5-0 run, giving them their first lead since early in the first. The Pistons missed their first four shots of the quarter and turned the ball over three times in four minutes.
The Nets would attempt 13 of their 25 free throws in the final frame, eight of them coming before the final minute and a half. The Pistons had six and Greg Monroe missed their most important at the 33-second mark, which would have tied the game at 89-89. After Monroe missed, he was then isolated on the right block by Brook Lopez and Lopez worked him for the game's most pivotal basket, a relatively easy layup.
Pistons had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds and send it to overtime, but a poorly executed (or nicely defended) play resulted in Bynum, probably the team's fourth or fifth best three-point option, hoisting a prayer.
Just like his other two attempts in the game: clank city.
•Monroe finished with 23 and 10, a block and only two turnovers.
•Jose Calderon racked up nine assists opposite three turnovers.
•In Knight's second game as starting SG, he was 4 for 10 with 12 points (4-6 from the line) and four assists/two turnovers.
• Bynum had seven assists/two turnovers. The Pistons had 28 team assists, which is great.
• All five Nets starters were in double figures. D-Will had nine assists but also six turnovers. Reggie Evans had 14 rebounds.
• Pistons host the ailing Spurs on Friday - they've only won 11 straight.
• Roll Call
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