The Detroit Pistons lost to the Dallas Mavericks, 106-101. Blake Griffin had another phenomenal performance (35 points, seven rebounds, four assists), Andre Drummond had 23 points and 15 rebounds in his return, and Reggie Jackson had nine assists.
And none of it mattered late in the game, because this team doesn’t have a wing or guard who can create a shot to save their life.
Let’s go down the list:
Reggie Bullock: Seven shots, nine points.
Stanley Johnson: Six shots, 0 points, admittedly good defense on Luka Doncic (32 points, 8 assists, just as good as advertised) down the stretch.
Langston Galloway: Five shots, Five points.
Luke Kennard: Five shots, three points.
Bruce Brown Jr.: Three shots, seven points.
I don’t care who you are, in the NBA in 2019, you need to be able to score points to win. The Pistons have clearly found themselves unable to do so for interminable stretches during the season. Detroit held Dallas to a sub-20 point quarter in the fourth... but they only scored 16 points themselves!
Something has to give. Ownership and management are in agreement that the playoffs is the goal, and playing to develop is off the table. The Pistons have three days off before their next game, and their next stretch is a four-game homestand - a perfect time to integrate a new, traded-for, bucket-getting, between the height of 6’5 and 6’8 piece for the stretch run.
Charlotte also lost tonight, and Kemba Walker exited late in the fourth quarter due to a “mild neck strain.” Miami played Cleveland down to the wire (CLEVELAND), and also cannot put the ball in the basket. The playoffs are still within Detroit’s grasp... but the roster, as currently constructed, doesn’t look like it can get them there. Let’s hope the front office recognizes and acknowledges that.
See y’all Tuesday against Milwaukee.