Ok, that’s more like it!
In their second matchup with the New York Knicks, the Detroit Pistons were much sharper. The shots were falling more often and turnovers appeared less often. Additionally, our players were still able to show some good stuff on defense. Now, we embark on a trip to our nation’s capital to test our good play against the Washington Wizards.
Washington is so far led by interesting young players in Deni Avdija and Rui Hachimura, has some local products we’re always keen to see (well, at least one of them if you dogged about the rivalry between Spartans and Wolverines) in Cassius Winston and Moritz Wagner, and maybe will play its stars in Bradley Beal and newly acquired Russell Westbrook.
Whichever players they’ll play, we’ll still most of all be eager to see our guys show up.
When: 7 p.m.
Where: Capital One Arena, Washington DC
Watch: Fox Sports Detroit
Since we saw some of the good, the bad and the ugly in Pistons play, let’s point out some trends, the continuation of which could be expected due to the nature of tonight’s opponent.
Wizards’ frontcourt players aren’t known for their ability to defend in space. So we might see more of these dribble penetrations by our big players:
The idea of five playmakers in the lineup is intriguing. So even if its execution will rarely lead to such bad or ugly results, I have nothing against trying it more today:
Due to the same shortcoming of Washington’s big men – a shortcoming that spreads to most of their smaller men too – we should be able to see more of these great modern inside-outside plays in the evening.
We need to admit that for a team with only one currently recognized three point sniper (Svi), we’re able to make cute use of a spaced floor (even though, there are times when it isn’t that pretty).
And since Wizards’ bigs also have flaws defending inside, we could see more of Jahlil utilizing his trademark footwork to end such a nice play by entire team (it was called a walk, but it was the ref who was bad and ugly here).
Playing against Washington centers could provide further opportunity for Pistons team to try some zone defense. None of the Wizards centers are nimble enough to take advantage of it by sneaking to the basket behind the play like Mitchell Robinson was able to do here.
If Beal and/or Westbrook play we might not take the risk, but if not, I want to at least see more of this P&R blitzing.
Hopefully tonight we again find among them more of these examples of growing Blake-Killian chemistry.
Whichever backcourt Wizards will throw at us, it’ll be good if Delon will continue to be an option to penetrate the arc like he did here:
Finally, our youngsters will again have the opportunity to show their worth playing against their peers. The matchups between Sekou and Saddiq vs. Hachimura and Avdija would be particularly interesting, and there’s a possibility they will face each other somewhere in the game tonight as coaches try out different rotations.
Detroit Pistons (1-1):
Killian Hayes, Delon Wright, Jerami Grant, Blake Griffin, Mason Plumlee
Washington Wizards (0-1)
Russell Westbrook, Bradley Beal, Deni Avdija, Rui Hachimura, Thomas Bryant
PS: One piece of advice: You better hide all your belongings when watching Isaiah Stewart play. The man is gonna go for every loose thing there is around…