The highlight of the first half came a minute and half into the first quarter when Isaiah Stewart got his 2nd block on Hassan Whiteside. After that, the Pistons proceeded to not score for the first 3 minutes of the quarter and would be down 13-2 early. Things never got better from there for 18 minutes as the Pistons displayed a poor effort against the best offensive team in the NBA.
Their combination of poor shooting and poor defense would have doomed them against any team in the NBA, but against one of the best, it would be an uphill battle. But it was an uphill battle the Pistons were ready for.
The Jazz would lead 35-21 after the 1st quarter, and it honestly should have been more. Cade Cunningham had what might have been his worst quarter of his young career. He was 0-of-4 from the field and had 2 turnovers. Cade, along with the rest of the team threw a lot of lazy passes and couldn’t hit any of their jumpers.
The 2nd quarter was not any better as the Pistons would get torched by Hassan Whiteside. The Jazz are already tough to beat because of their ability to shoot, getting torched by their backup center makes the task that much harder. Isaiah Stewart at least looked like he cared, and most of Whiteside’s damage came against the Pistons undersized bench unit.
The Pistons would make the score a bit more respectable heading into halftime as they would go on a 16-7 run at the end of the 2nd quarter. They would still trail 61-48 at halftime. It looked like we were heading for another blowout loss. The Jazz are the best 2nd half team in the NBA, and there was no way the Pistons would be able to mount a comeback.
The effort was better to start the 3rd quarter, at least the Pistons didn’t look like a team that just woke up. The Jazz made some mistakes and the Pistons were able to capitalize. They got the Jazz lead down to 61-55 by the 10 minute mark of the 3rd quarter and kept it going to get it down to 4 by the 8 minute mark.
Cade had a huge bounce back in the quarter as his shots were falling and he looked like a completely different player than he did in the 1st half. He scored 18 points in the 3rd and helped the Pistons flip this game on its head. Shooting 8-12 as a team from 3-point range in the quarter definitely helps with that.
They would LEAD 88-84 heading into the 4th, and all of the sudden the Jazz were in for a 4th quarter battle that didn’t look possible after the 1st half.
The Jazz definitely tightened up their effort to start the 4th quarter. They would quickly recapture the lead 2 minutes into the quarter, but the Pistons kept fighting. The Pistons looked like they were the best 2nd half team in the NBA in this one. They thoroughly outplayed the Jazz in both the 3rd and 4th quarters.
The Pistons would pull off the shocking upset after they looked dead in the water in the 1st half, 126-116. They did everything right in the 4th, hitting clutch shots, making defensive stops and outplaying the Jazz just like they did in the 3rd.
Cade Cunningham would finish with 29. Saddiq Bey had 29 points as well and the Pistons got solid contributions off the bench by Josh Jackson, Cory Joseph, and Trey Lyles.
Donovan Mitchell had 31 for the Jazz and Hassan Whiteside only finished with 21 after his spectacular 1st half.
The Pistons will be back in action tomorrow against the Bulls.