The Milwaukee Bucks were without Khris Middleton, Jrue Holliday, and Donte DiVincenzo, but they still had Giannis Antetokounmpo and that was all that they needed.
The minutes restriction was taken off of Cade Cunningham, which left some hope that the offense would start to improve for the beleaguered Detroit Pistons. That hope was dashed early on in this one. The only player that was able to make shots in the 1st quarter was Jerami Grant, who finished the quarter with 10 points on 4-5 shooting, including 2-3 from 3-point land.
That is where the bright spots stop for the 1st quarter and pretty much the rest of the game. Isaiah Stewart had a nightmare start where he either caught the ball and turned it over, or got blocked at the rim by a guard. Cade Cunningham’s jumpers is still off, but he also made some nice play like this:
The Pistons would be down to the Bucks 27-20 after the first quarter. The offense was a mess and the score at the end of the 1st was the closest this game would get.
Cunningham looked noticeably more comfortable when he got the chance to run the point, despite the missed jumpers. He actually got the chance to run the point in the 2nd quarter for a few minutes. Everybody was still missing open shots, but the offense at least appeared to flow better. Unless he is able to get his jumper figured out, it isn’t going to do the team much good, especially with how much everybody is struggling shooting the ball.
The only other bright spot from the first half was Trey Lyles. He has been surprisingly consistent this season as one of the few bright spots and the few players that actually hits open jumpers. He had 6 points on 2-of-5 shooting from three going into halftime. He would finish the game with 13 points on 3-of-9 shooting.
The Pistons would enter halftime down 57-39 and were only shooting 32.5 percent from the field and 21.7 percent from three point range.
Cade was more assertive to start the 3rd. He had a nice coast-to-coast drive for a floater to start the half, and it looked like he might finally start to come alive, but then went back to clanking jumpers. Jerami Grant continued his hot start and was the Pistons only bright spot in this game, but nothing really changed offensively. The Pistons were still missing a lot of shots and the offense didn’t look pretty.
It didn’t matter if it was the starters or bench, it was just the same result.
There isn’t any reason to go into anymore depth on the 3rd and 4th quarters. It was more of the same. The Bucks continued to make all of their shots while the Pistons missed all of their shots. The Pistons would end this game shooting 32.3 percent from the field and 17 percent from 3-point range.
Antetokounmpo was a one-man wrecking crew. He was blocking the Pistons at the rim, driving to the rim at will, and even hitting some jumpers. The Bucks were missing a lot of players and this game should have been closer because of it, but the Pistons just weren’t ready to play again and Giannis ended any hopes of the Pistons ending their long losing streak against the Bucks. He ended his night with 28 points, 8 rebounds, 9 assists, and 4 blocks in only 27 minutes.
For the Pistons, Jerami Grant had 21 points on 8-of-13 shooting and 4-of-8 from 3. Cade Cunningham had a disastrous night shooting the ball. He was 0-of-9 from 3-point range and just continued to force so he could see something go in. Saddiq Bey was 2-of-13 and was getting gun shy on 3-pointers, which is not something I expected to see out of him.
Something needs to change whether it be a change of the offense or a change in the starting lineup. Nobody looks comfortable out there and nobody can make any shots.
The Pistons will continue their early-season gauntlet against the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday.