In their first game of the World Series – a new feature of NBA schedule aimed at diminishing the need to extended travel during pandemic – our Detroit Pistons put emphasis on defense. They were so serious about that, that they missed almost 70% of their shots, didn’t rebound well, and committed 22 turnovers to get the ball to their opponents and thus have more opportunities to work on their D. The work was good enough to allow the Knicks to score only 90 points, and NY turned the ball over even more (24 turnovers ).
Or maybe it was just a game between bottom-dwellers, consisting of players that haven’t played an NBA game in nine months.
The truth is probably somewhere in between. And this applies also to the offensive end, where not all was so broken as quoted numbers suggest. So let’s try to separate the good from the bad to get a better understanding of what to expect in the second act of this Gigantomachia.
When: 7 p.m.
Where: Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, Michigan
Watch: Fox Sports Detroit
In today’s game, the poor shooting will likely continue. So will the turnovers. Expect more mental mistakes on defense. It’s been a long time since a lot of our guys played, and it’s the
first second time most of them have played together. But the poor shooting, turnovers and mistakes won’t intimidate our players. They’ll continue to play with great energy, passion, effort and tenacity. This is why all these young players were brought in in the first place. And we should continue to see this energy, passion and tenacity both today and in the future.
Blake Griffin will stay committed, show some great basketball and teach the youngsters even playing against opponent such lame as the Knicks.
Blake’s cheering for teammates
Blake’s sweet move
Blake’s teaching youngsters
So don’t be surprised to see him cheering for our good plays, making things happen on the court that causes our jaw to drop, and helping his new teammates understand the game. I don’t know what to say about his defense, because I’m just as much stunned as you are seeing him engaged so much defending the perimeter.
The chemistry between Blake and Killian Hayes will grow.
And, in the evening, Killian will probably show more of this magic with the ball… and do I dare to say a pass with his right hand?
But seriously, this kid looks so much better now (even though he already looked good in our scouting reports a few months ago), playing with both hands in quite handsome schemes our coaching staff designed to mesh his potential with Blake and others.
Also, the mystery will further unfold tonight as Jerami Grant will continue to make some dribble plays, showing what his “bigger offensive role” might mean.
Our young players will continue to show that they belong. And our vets will continue to look sometimes a little silly trying to bail them out.
Youngsters fight for recognition
Veterans careless play
Finally, we’ll get confused with more questions — like why on earth Delon Wright is in backcourt rotation looking invisible next to Killian when Svi Mykhailiuk is the better cutter, bigger, stronger and could provide superior perimeter shooting. Or why our second unit is better in transition and P&R defense.
Our guys will make a ton more mistakes, but we’ll still like today’s game because those are our guys. We waited for Detroit basketball so long that for some time we’ll get drunk with it in every form, and when it all will finally click this will be very enjoyable basketball even without intoxicants.
Delon not your usual cutter
So those are the things to be expected from our Pistons play today… and in the near future.
Ok, if you read this lengthy preview, you’re closer to another Pistons game and that is all that matters right now. May we have a good one my follow DBBers.
Killian Hayes, Svi Mykhailiuk, Jerami Grant, Blake Griffin, Mason Plumlee
Elfrid Payton, RJ Barret, Obi Toppin, Julius Randle, Nerlens Noel