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DBB on 3: Post-preseason fill-in-the-blanks

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The 2017-18 preseason is in the books...we have some thoughts.

Everyone’s standard answer when talking about the preseason is that it doesn’t really have much relevance to the regular season. That doesn’t mean there weren’t things to be happy or worried about. We have some thoughts, in a fill-in-the-blank format:

1. The preseason made me feel _________ about the upcoming regular season.

Jordan Bellant: Feel feelings.

I think there are a lot of potential outcomes this season for our team. After the preseason, in which I put little stock, that feeling remains. Is it good? Bad? I don't know, but it's a lot.

Justin Lambregtse: Better.

Andre Drummond played how I hope he plays in two out of the three games and was making his free throws. The shooting also looks better for this team.

Ben Gulker: Nothing.

I care as much about preseason as the players appear to. I’m excited for this season, but preseason has little to do with that.

Kevin Sawyer: I don't think it's much of an indicator. The Pistons were a top ten offense and a bottom ten defense, a reversal from last season I am inclined to attribute to sample size.

Steve Hinson: Skeptical.

It seems the Pistons are running it back with mostly the same problems. The complementary parts seem better, but the foundation looks as shaky as ever.

Lazarus Jackson: Fine.

There were good games and bad games, but the principles - Reggie's health, Stanley's calm, Andre's focus and free throw shooting - were solid. They still look like a 42-win team.

David Fernandez: Optimistic.

I only was able to watch highlights and the final game of the preseason, and I feel optimistic about the upcoming season. Reggie looked spry in the final game against MIL, better than anytime I remember watching last season. Healthy Reggie + Engaged Dre = Playoffs.

2. After the preseason it's obvious that ________ could be a real problem for the team this year.

Jordan Bellant: Defending three-point shooting.

The way the league is going, this could be a problem. Unless SVG was sandbagging in the preseason, the Pistons were fooled by a lot of motion and allowed a lot of open shots. It's worrisome.

Justin Lambregtse: Reggie Jackson

I though he looked healthier in terms of his ability to beat people off the dribble, but his shooting was atrocious after spending the whole summer rehabbing and not playing much basketball. It could take him a month or two to get back in a groove and the team cannot afford to wait that long while still playing him.

Ben Gulker: Point guard.

See Reggie Jackson’s health and defense from all three PG’s.

Kevin Sawyer: A tie between Galloway and Reggie.

The former didn't shoot well from deep, and that is all he ostensibly brings to the table. Reggie Jackson really hasn't been good since the first half of the 2015-2016 season, and I see little reason to be optimistic for a return to that level. If SVG won't pull the hook early, he'll single-handedly lose us games.

Steve Hinson: Reggie Jackson.

If we're going with obvious, yeah. In Jackson's three preseason games, he had a net rating of -31.9. Heck, I'm not even mad; that's amazing!
(Kevin Sawyer edit: Did you just compare our starting point guard's preseason to a small dog that ate an entire wheel of cheese? I co-sign.)
(Steve edit: Yes I used that same joke yesterday and no I’m not sorry. It really is amazing.)

Lazarus Jackson: Backup center.

Boban is who he is, but is that what Stan wants from a backup center? We saw a good bit of Leuer, Ellenson, and even Eric Moreland at backup center this preseason. Part of that is pre-season experimentation, but the amount of searching tells me Stan's not entirely sure about the position.

David Fernandez: Backup small forward and center are still a major concern. I'll be interested to see how that rotation pans out.

3. After the preseason it's obvious that ________ could be a real bright spot for the team this year.

Jordan Bellant: Avery Bradley.

He will be out to earn a market-level extension from us this season. He's a real lunch pail guy, and I expect he has a tremendous season.

Justin Lambregtse: Stanley Johnson.

I was high on him last year as the Pistons breakout player and he disappointed. He at least looked the part in the preseason and did not look out of place in the starting lineup.

Ben Gulker: No one.

No one is “obviously” a bright spot at this point. Several guys have a lot to prove, though, so there’s plenty of motivation all around.

Kevin Sawyer: Drummond and Boban.

If Drummond is hitting free throws above 50 percent, he's a completely different player, a plus on offense in addition to being the league's best rebounder. Boban shot 79 percent from the field, and he regularly has stretches like this. It looks like SVG is looking at this tandem at the center position, so that's an improvement over last year.

Steve Hinson: Young players.

Stanley Johnson, Henry Ellenson, and Luke Kennard all looked like they belong in the league. None of them are really a premium talent, but they're guys you can win with.

Lazarus Jackson: Avery Bradley.

He brings such an energy defensively that permeates the rest of the team - you can definitely see why the Pistons were so happy to bring him in.

David Fernandez: Avery Bradley.

He looked incredible in the Milwaukee game, and put up some solid numbers in the previous games. He's reliable offense, the Pistons need reliable offense.

________________________

What are your post preseason thoughts? Please copy paste the questions and share your thoughts below:

1. The preseason made me feel _________ about the upcoming regular season.

2. After the preseason it's obvious that ________ could be a real problem for the team this year.

3. After the preseason it's obvious that ________ could be a real bright spot for the team this year.