7:30 pm ET
New York: 26-37 (8-22 road)
Margin: -2.0 ppg (-1.6 last 25%)
Pistons: 32-30 (17-15 home)
Margin: -0.4 (-1.1 last 25%)
Last 10: 5-5
Mike D'Antoni is the best coach in the NBA. The fact that this New York Knicks squad is only 2.5 games out of the playoff hunt attests to that fact. The Knicks are a fantasy owners dream come true.
That said, the Pistons should be able to own them tonight. The Knicks don't have the interior defenders to keep Stuckey out of the paint. They have no answer for Rip. They certainly won't know what to do with Sheed if he suits up.
That said, David Lee could take a stab at our Achilles heal tonight, particularly if Rasheed is out. A never ending volley of offensive rebounds would be the equalizer tonight.
There is at least a 20% chance that Lee will be in a Pistons uniform by next year, don't you think?
Keys for Detroit
Keep Lee off the Boards: The dude gets rebounds by default, so 13-14 is an acceptable total. But if he puts up a 20-20, it's a good indication that Detroit isn't winning.
Exploit the defense: Yes, the Knicks like to play uptempo. That's no reason to settle for jumpers. This team blocks two shots per game.
Don't put the on the line: The Knicks shoot 80% as a team. Frivolous fouls will be particularly costly. Let the shooter take his shot, if necessary.
Question of the Game
Are we still in serious mode? Rip has been averaging nearly 25 ppg lately. If we are hitting on all cylinders, this could be the biggest blowout of the year.