clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Can Pistons still make the playoffs?

New, comments

Yep and nope.

Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports

After being blown out in Charlotte on the back-end of a back-to-back, the last thing on most Pistons-fans minds is playoffs. Cue Jim Mora. But can the Pistons still make the playoffs? Sure. So long as the little 'o' isn't next to their name in the standings on NBA.com, the Pistons are mathematically still in the hunt for a playoff spot. 99.9-percent NO, they won't make it... but I'm telling you there's a chance.

The Pistons, as of Good Friday, are 5 GB of the No. 8 seed as result of their loss on Wednesday night. They would have to leap four teams to get there in seven games. All seven games probably need to be wins, but they might be able to get away with winning six of seven if everything goes their way in the games involving the teams in front of them.

Here's who the Pistons play the rest of the way:

Game 76 (Fri., Apr. 3): Pistons at Bulls
Game 77 (Sat., Apr. 4): Heat at Pistons
Game 78 (Wed., Apr. 8): Celtics at Pistons (ESPN)
Game 79 (Fri., Apr. 10): Pacers at Pistons
Game 80 (Sun., Apr. 12): Hornets at Pistons
Game 81 (Mon., Apr. 13): Pistons at Cavaliers
Game 82 (Wed., Apr. 15): Pistons at Knicks

Here's how the rest stacks up:

Miami Boston Indiana Brooklyn Charlotte Detroit
Game 1 @ Detroit Milwaukee Charlotte Toronto @Indiana @Chicago
Game 2 @ Indiana @Toronto Miami @Atlanta Philadelphia Miami
Game 3 Charlotte @ Detroit @New York Portland @Miami Boston
Game 4 Chicago @ Cleveland @Detroit Atlanta Toronto Indiana
Game 5 Toronto Cleveland Oklahoma City Washington @ Atlanta Charlotte
Game 6 Orlando Toronto Washington @ Milwaukee @ Detroit @Cleveland
Game 7 @ Philadelphia @ Milwaukee @ Memphis Chicago Houston @New York
Game 8



@Toronto

I've gone cross eyed looking at it, but trust me, it's possible.

The easiest route? Win out and hope everyone in front of the Pistons loses when possible. Here's how I'm going to root the rest of the season:

Friday, April 3:

Pacers over Hornets (because eff the Hornets right now)
Bucks over Celtics
Raptors over Nets
Pistons over Bulls (duh)

This would put the Pistons 4.5 back of the Nets, Celtics and Heat.

Saturday, April 4:

76ers over Hornets
Hawks over Nets
Pistons over Heat (duh) 
Raptors over Celtics

This would put the Pistons 3.5 back of the Nets, Celtics and Heat.

Sunday, April 5:

Pacers over Heat (build up Indy before the fall)

This would put the Pistons 3 back of the Heat. 3.5 back of the Nets, Celtics and Pacers.

Monday, April 6:

Blazers over Nets

This would put the Pistons 3 back of the Heat and Nets, still 3.5 back of the Celtics and Pacers.

Tuesday, April 7:

Hornets over Heat

This would put the Pistons 2.5 back of the Heat.

Wednesday, April 8:

Pistons over Celtics (duh)
Raptors over Hornets
Hawks over Nets
Knicks over Pacers (there they go... )

Thursday, April 9:

Bulls over Heat

Friday, April 10:

Hawks over Hornets
Wizards over Nets
Cavs over Celtics
Pistons over Pacers (duh)

If all goes according to dreams, after April 10, the Pistons could be ONE game back of a playoff spot at 33-46, trailing the Heat, Nets, Celtics and Pacers at 34-45. The Hornets would also be 33-46 with the Pistons, owning the tie-breaker.

Saturday, April 11:

Raptors over Heat

Sunday, April 12:

Bucks over Nets
Cavs over Heat
Pistons over Hornets (duh)
Thunder over Pacers

BOOM. PLAYOFFS. 34-46 and tied with the Nets, Celtics and Pacers for two remaining playoff spots, but the Pistons would have the tie-breaker over the Celtics and Pacers (better head-to-head record). The Heat would be 34-47 (L7).

Monday, April 13:

Rockets over Hornets
Pistons over Cavs (duh)
Bulls over Nets
Magic over Heat

Tuesday, April 14:

Raptors over Celtics
Wizards over Pacers

Hello, No. 7 seed.

Wednesday, April 15:

Pistons over Knicks would clinch it. But for good measure:
Raptors over Hornets
Bucks over Celtics
Magic over Nets
76ers over Heat
Grizzlies over Pacers

Do you believe in miracles? 

I blacked out - what happened?

UPDATE:

The Pistons' loss to the Bulls on Friday night puts them at 0.0% odds of making the playoffs, according to Hollinger's NBA Playoffs Odds. The Pistons are technically still not mathematically eliminated, but yeah, put a fork in them.