How do we make sense of the fact that the Pistons can cool the jets of one of the West’s best, the Houston Rockets, and freeze out the Miami Heat, but also lose convincingly to two of the NBA’s worst – Minnesota and Philadelphia? If the competition for a playoff spot goes down to the wire in April, those losses may loom large. For now they have kept 20-32 Detroit from moving ahead of 21-30 Brooklyn into ninth place. While their next 10 games will be broken up by a nine-day rest due to the All-Star Break, the Pistons will play two more back-to-backs and will face only one squad with a poorer record than their own. This slate is bookended by away and home matches versus the Charlotte Hornets, who are currently tied with Miami for seventh place in the Eastern Conference at 22-29. Detroit will enjoy home court advantage in six of these games, and they will need all the fan support they can muster to avoid reaching 40 losses.
As All-Star Break approaches, can Pistons keep playoff hopes alive?
Detroit went just 4-6 over its last 10 games, yet did not lose any ground on two close rivals - Brooklyn and Miami. With critical contests coming up, can they move ahead in the standings?