I missed most of the Pistons' game due to Game 3 of the ALCS, so I don't have very many game thoughts outside of what I can gather from the pleasing box score. So, I'll defer to other recaps around the web for general observations, starting with Orlando Pinstriped Post, SB Nation's Orlando Magic blog:
The outcome ought not have come as a surprise, as coach Jacque Vaughn elected to, on the second night of a back-to-back, rest his established veteran core of Jameer Nelson, J.J. Redick, Hedo Turkoglu, and Glen Davis. Undrafted rookie DeQuan Jones started for the second straight game and led Orlando with 22 points on 9-of-13 shooting, while Gustavo Ayón got the nod at center and responded with 19 points, 10 rebounds, and three assists.
The Pistons manhandled Orlando around the board, with 10 players scoring seven points or more. Speedy combo guard Rodney Stuckey led Detroit with 19 points on 6-of-10 shooting, exposing Orlando's poor perimeter defense in much the same way Kyrie Irving did Monday night.
The Pistons were down two midway through the first quarter when the second unit entered the game and put the Pistons up 12, and for good, in less than nine minutes of action [MLIVE]:
"They changed the game," Frank said. "When they came in as a unit, it was 20-18 Orlando. By the time those guys came out, it was 42-28. The (second) quarter was very good. Starting on the defensive end, I think we held them to 14 points, 33 percent shooting.
"I think we turned it over one time, shot 70 percent during that stretch in the second quarter. Some real good stuff. We played real good basketball in stretches."
Our friend Patrick Hayes at Piston Powered says the obvious takeaway from the game was the Pistons' three-point shooting and Knight doing more encouraging, point guard things:
The obvious takeaway from this game was Detroit’s long range shooting. After shooting just 22 percent from three in their first three preseason games, the Pistons made 10-for-21 tonight. Average or slightly below 3-point shooters Will Bynum, Jonas Jerebko and Kyle Singler probably aren’t going to go 3-for-3 every game, but the most encouraging sign for me was Brandon Knight hitting 3-for-4. Fans, media and, I’m sure, coaches have harped on Knight throughout his rookie season and offseason about doing more point guard-like things — taking care of the ball and distributing the ball — at a higher level this year. Knight has obviously taken that to hear. Throughout the Summer League and preseason, he’s been a willing passer and a better passer. The turnovers are still a bit high, but I think even Knight’s biggest critics would say that he has certainly looked to make plays more for others so far in this small sample size than what we saw from him last season.
Vincent Goodwill says the Pistons showed signs of "cohesion," but focused most of his post on Andre Drummond playing with Greg Monroe for the first time, which we'll have more on:
If things go as they're trending, Monroe will help the more explosive Drummond with easy opportunities inside while Monroe can count on Drummond to help on the back side with shot blocking.
"I know he felt more free to do things he's used to doing; I took a little more beating," Drummond said. "It was fun. You could see us smiling, joking around. He threw me that alley-oop. I think we'll be a great combination."
The game provided another glimpse of the Pistons' future:
Drummond showed several flashes of the potential that has the Pistons excited about his future. In the first quarter, he blocked a shot and then quickly got down to the other end in time to finish inside. In the second quarter, he hustled to force a turnover at midcourt and earned applause from Frank and the Pistons bench.
The loudest ovation?
One of the loudest outbursts of the night from the sparse crowd came during a timeout with 3:32 left in the third quarter, when public-address announcer John Mason told the fans that the Tigers were leading the Yankees 1-0 in the ALCS at Comerica Park.
Now, your thoughts.