It was only the first game of the preseason, but there are plenty of positives to take away from the Pistons' first win in the Stan Van Gundy era. If you read Sean's post about Van Gundy's offensive and defensive priorities, one could say the Pistons hit on more of the musts than not.
How's this? The Pistons forced a shot clock violation on the very first possession of the Van Gundy era.
Defending without fouling became a problem in the fourth quarter, though, when the Bulls were able to capitalize off the Pistons' 13 personal fouls. Despite only shooting 26 percent in the frame, the Bulls hit 13 free throws, including two with just under two seconds remaining to force overtime.
Greg Monroe, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Brandon Jennings shined for the Pistons with Jonas Jerebko playing the role of the unsung hero. Moose scored 10 in the fourth quarter and finished with 24 and nine rebounds in probably more minutes off the bench than Van Gundy had hoped to play him in the first preseason game (31). Moose's two free throws in the final seconds of overtime sealed it.
Caldwell-Pope scored 18 thanks in part to 4-of-8 shooting from behind the three-point line. As promised, he was more aggressive and looked better than Jodie Meeks in the same number of minutes (though Meeks did not look bad).
The Pistons played unselfish basketball, assisting on 28 baskets, and turned the ball over only 13 times. Jennings had 10 of those assists with ZERO turnovers. He looked every bit like the player Van Gundy hopes him to be -- making plays and not taking too many stupid shots. He did not shoot well, but 12 total shots is not bad and one was a buzzer beater.
Overall, some promise. But again, it's just one preseason game.
-- Box Score
-- The Pistons ran a handful of plays for Andre Drummond, who scored 13 on 6-for-13 shooting. This was his first basket:
-- Josh Smith is still Josh Smith.
Mike Dunleavy just took a flying knee to the, uh, midsection: https://t.co/N7TmijDhJg— Ricky O'Donnell (@SBN_Ricky) October 8, 2014
-- Caron Butler started at small forward and Kyle Singler spelled him off the bench. Neither played particularly well. Singler's shot was flat and he missed four free throws.
-- D.J. Augustin was impressive running the point, but he struggled some against Aaron Brooks, who seemed to be playing with a chip on his shoulder for some reason -- it's just the preseason, man! Brooks finished with 18 points for the Bulls.
-- Joakim Noah did not play and Derrick Rose only played 14 minutes.
-- The Pistons play next on Thursday.
-- What say you, DBB?