Pistons vs. Knicks: Pistons head east seeking momentum

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Palace wasn't a cure for the Pistons' worst stretch of the season. They'll head to the east coast for a three game road trip, starting tonight in Madison Square Garden.

Detroit Pistons (14-20) at New York Knicks (11-22)

7:30 p.m. Eastern
Fox Sports Detroit

It was just December 20, seven games ago, that the Pistons were flirting with .500 and showing promise. Since then, it's been a downward spiral. Second halves have been particularly bad. Over that stretch, the Pistons have been outscored by a total of 92 points after halftimes, an average 55 to 42.

The Situation

After Sunday's loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, coach Maurice Cheeks called an impromptu meeting before speaking to the press. He also hinted before the game that lineup changes may be in store leading up to the game. It's good to see that at least one piece of the leadership team recognizes the disastrous turn this season has taken, even if he hasn't done remarkably much to make a tangible impact.

They face a team that has possibly been even more of a circus in the New York Knicks. Hey guys, you'll never believe this but a team with a starting frontcourt of Carmelo Anthony and Andrea Bargnani for much of the season has been really bad defensively. However, since Tyson Chandler returned the Knicks are 4-5 and have shown signs of life.

The Cleveland Cavs are behind both and just made a big swap, acquiring Luol Deng for Andrew Bynum. With the Cavs currently sitting behind both the Pistons and Knicks, both teams soon could find themselves looking up at another team in the Eastern Conference race if they don't get their acts together.

Keys to the Game

Josh Smith: You don't have to be good, just don't butcher the team. Over the past four games, he's averaging 14 shot attempts on 28 percent shooting. It's tough for any team to overcome that type of awfulness. Brandon Jennings has also hit a shooting slump of his own, with 15 attempts per game over that stretch and making only 30 percent of them.

Kyle Singler: Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe have for the most part been their typical solid selves over this stretch of awful basketball, but Singler has been the standout flying under the radar. Compared to those numbers Smith and Jennings are putting up, Kyle Singler has gotten 5 shots per game while shooting 65 percent over the past four games. It sounds just as odd to me...but...feed Singler.

Defense: Opponents have cracked triple digits in seven of the last eight games against the Pistons, while their defensive rating has fallen to 24th in the league.

Question of the Game

With Snowpocalypse upon us, I've had the past two days off work. Hooray grown up snow days! Has your work been shut down? Any fun activities during the snow day?

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