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Pistons vs. Nets: Detroit greets Blake Griffin in Brooklyn

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The Pistons won’t play against Blake tonight, but he will give Brooklyn a different look on offense

Boston Celtics v Brooklyn Nets Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images

Two seasons ago Detroit Pistons Head Coach Dwayne Casey designed a offensive system in which great Blake Griffin became even greater. Two and a half years (and couple of knee procedures) later, the same Blake Griffin is trying to find a niche for himself on a bench of a contending team. Sadly, this new chapter in his decorated career will not start in time for his old team, the Pistons, to visit his new team, the Nets:

Game Vitals

When: Saturday, March 13, 2021, 7:00 p.m.
Where: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
Watch: Fox Sports Detroit/NBA TV
Odds: Det +11.5

Analysis

After a civilized divorce, the Pistons and Griffin are moving on. Detroit found a great use of the playing time freed by Blake’s departure by testing their young players. And Blake found himself in Brooklyn a new home fitting his still-high aspirations. The Nets will give Griffin the opportunity for “playing meaningful basketball, playing in the playoffs and contending for a championship.” Griffin, in turn, will give Nets yet another offensive punch (this one from the bench) to up their chances for the title, as he still possess some unique skills on that end being good to great as big ball handler in P&Rs, as roll man and in transition, as well as displaying an intriguing potential for small ball five who can hit an open three and make plays.

Griffin’s departure and Detroit’s youth movement that followed, beside producing some changes in Detroit’s lineups, also produced some alteration in the team’s defensive strategies. Those could be today tested by another former Piston, Bruce Brown. In his last six games before the All-Star break, Bruce was averaging 18 points per game on 67.7 shooting from the field by using his slashing, cutting and transition abilities to the fullest. Playing off of two of the best ball handlers in the League in Kyrie Irving and James Harden, this Bruce could be a great test for young Motor City’s wings trying, in cooperation with older teammates, to learn how to find themselves in those post-Blake arrangements.

One thing Detroit won’t be able to test its young players against its former player, even if Blake will play tonight, will be those BlakeDre P&Rs.

It’s because, although Nets are rumored to intend to reunite Griffin with Drummond, they won’t be able to do it in the next couple of hours we have until the game starts. So with this particular test, if it’s going to happen at all, we’ll have to wait until the next game between Pistons and Nets.

Projected lineups

Detroit Pistons (10-27):

Delon Wright, Wayne Ellington, Saddiq Bey, Jerami Grant, Mason Plumlee

Brooklyn Nets (25-13):

Kyrie Irving, James Harden, Bruce Brown, Joe Harris, DeAndre Jordan

Have a good testing game fellow DBBers... and big thanks and all the best to Svi, who now will pass his tests – no doubt he will – elsewhere!!!