The Pistons got a spark in the fourth quarter from an unlikely source. Carlos Delfino, who provided seven points and three rebounds. [sic]
What McCoskey does not mention however, and an intriguing story that can be salvaged from the uninspired play of the Pistons (the best backcourt in the NBA excluded), is that again in a close game Delfino received the bulk of the minutes backing up Rip and Tay Tay. In fact, in the last three games (all tight contests—the type in which non-rotational players stay stapled to the bench), Delfino has averaged 10.3 minutes to Maurice Evans’ 7.6. To put these numbers into perspective, in the previous seven competitive games (games decided by ten points or fewer, as well as the December 12 debacle in Utah), Delfino was seeing only 6.7 minutes of floor time (punctuated by a couple of DNPs) while Mo was up and running for 13.7.
Obviously three games is much too small a sample size to make assumptions about whether Delfino has surpassed Evans in Coach Flip's rotation. And this is no knock on Mo, who is still a solid, young bench player who's always hustling. But if Delfino -- almost a full five years younger than his team-Argentina teammate -- keeps improving and providing the spark needed to get the team through its pre-All Star break boredoms, look for him to continue to see the floor in important situations for the remainder of the season giving the Pistons another finals-ready playa come June.
Pistons register routine victory [Detroit News]
Pistons 108, Magic 99 box score [ESPN]
Billups, Hamilton are the best backcourt in the NBA [Sports Network]
(As noted by Matt, this is my first posting on this site. I'm a rabid Piston fan living, working, and attending law school in D.C. My goal is to maintain the level of quality that Matt has worked so hard to provide here and to share my thoughts (and hopefully receive some in return) on our favorite team. Matt is the true expert; I'm just extremely opinionated. As always, go blue!)