The Pistons bucked its tendency to start slow and led by as many as 20 in the first half.
They did so primarily on the strength of playing against the Nets approximation of defense.
I mean, watch this:
I'm behind in this BKN-DET game, in part because I'm still trying to figure out why DeAndre Jordan just stopped defending in the middle of a play. pic.twitter.com/eVEOHt93w4— John Schuhmann (@johnschuhmann) February 10, 2021
Jerami Grant got his easiest buckets of the season by far, a welcome sight for someone who has had to grind like crazy for nearly everything he’s gotten this year. Delon Wright knifed through Brooklyn with very little resistance, despite his struggles shooting the ball. The Pistons attempted uncontested shot after uncontested shot.
Isaiah Stewart even made a three! And he provided us with this highlight on the other end:
Isaiah Stewart sends it all the way back! pic.twitter.com/XIVaXjMhnz— Beef Stew Fan Club (@StewFanClub) February 10, 2021
The Nets closed the gap in the second half and got as close as two as the Pistons slowed the game down and got away from a lot of what made them successful offensively in the first two quarters. Not having to work very hard defensively played right into Brooklyn’s plan and propelled them offensively.
But a late Pistons third-quarter spurt, fueled by some strong minutes from Saddiq Bey and Josh Jackson, widened the lead and Detroit really never looked back.
Grant was fantastic all night long, scoring 32 points on 11 of 19 shooting while playing his usual great defense against the Nets’ dynamic scorers. He was, quite simply, the best player on the court.
His former Denver teammate, Mason Plumlee, had another strong game doing a little bit of everything to the tune of 14 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists, two steals, and three blocks.
In its first game without Derrick Rose, the bench unit didn’t really miss a beat. Rodney McGruder and Saben Lee each took a turn. Neither stood out, but neither was problematic either. Bey and Jackson combined for 28 points and found ways to score even without a dynamic creator beside them.
It was a true team effort tonight for the Pistons, who once again showed that competing hard every night gives you a chance to win on most nights.
Some spare thoughts:
- Sekou Doumbouya only got a single six minute stint while the game was in doubt, but he made a nice lefty layup after being rewarded for running the court in transition.
- Detroit went to Blake in the post a bit too much in the third quarter, but Griffin’s smaller role in the first half when the Pistons were humming felt just right.
- Despite some struggles over the past few weeks, Saddiq looked really good on both ends. Hopefully tonight’s performance gives him some confidence shooting the ball moving forward.
- Did I mention Brooklyn’s defense is really bad?