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Pistons look to right ship with the Cavs

The Pistons return home after a short but disheartening road trip that saw them pummeled on both nights of a back-to-back. The Cavs visit in what should be a prime opportunity to recover their dignity and attempt rebuilding the confidence on display during Corey Maggette’s midcourt rally that closed their last game in the Palace.


Game tips at 7:30 p.m. EST
Cleveland Cavs 4-13 (2-9 road)
Detroit Pistons 5-13 (4-3 home)

The Situation.

After the last two ugly showings, it's easy to forget that the Pistons were showing signs of life prior to heading back on another Western Conference road show. Coming off their first win streak of the season, the team had won 5 of its last 8 and the roster was showing signs of stabilizing with Stuckey's move to the sixth man.

Despite their thrashing nature, the losses still only count as one game each and the Pistons remain 5-5 over the last 10 games that have come since their winless start. They have a chance to right the ship with three home games this week against three underwhelming opponents. The first of these comes tonight with the Cavaliers, the only team Detroit is currently looking down to in the division standings.

The Cavs travel to the Palace with Anderson Varejao as their best and most consistent player, which despite how well Varejao has played must come as a huge disappointment to a team with four first round picks in the last two drafts, including last year's Rookie of the Year. However, Irving has taken a step backwards so far this season (while still failing to shake the injury bug), and fellow lottery picks Tristan Thompson and Dion Waiters have been disappointments.

The rest of the roster is depressingly void of bright spots, although Omri Casspi has been coming on the past handful of games.

Still, the weekend's blowouts are a reminder that the Pistons remain a team questions of their own that still need answered. Hopefully a successful homestand will have fans feeling better about these, but it's hard to imagine that any definitive answers are particularly near at hand.

Keys to the Game


Bounce-back game for Monroe and Knight: both were very shaky over the weekend and square off against strong counterparts. It'll be important for them to get back on track for Detroit to have a chance to win.

Feed Singler: a quarter of the way into the season and with primary playmakers struggling, it might not be a bad time to look for more touches for the team's TS% leader.

Question of the Game:

Knight or Irving? Sharing a draft class and division, Knight and Irving seem to use each other as measuring sticks. Who will get the better of the matchup tonight?