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Pistons vs. Bucks preview: Detroit follows up its biggest win with its toughest test

Detroit Pistons face the Greek Freak as they look to avoid a ghoulish Halloween performance

Atlanta Hawks v Milwaukee Bucks Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images

The Detroit Pistons delivered a thrilling and thorough victory against the Golden State Warriors on Sunday in front of a raucous Little Caesars Arena. They didn’t get much time to celebrate, however, as they immediately travel to Milwaukee to face Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks on Halloween night. The Bucks are the only remaining undefeated team in the NBA and sport the league’s stingiest defense.

Game Vitals

When: 8 p.m. ET
Where: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Watch: Bally Sports Detroit
Odds: Pistons +13


The game’s best superstar leads the league’s most dangerous team, and the Pistons are on the second night of a back-to-back and currently 13-point underdogs. After surprising the defending champion Warriors, maybe the Pistons can cast a similar spell against the Bucks. But Milwaukee is a much more dangerous team, at home and not playing its third game in four nights.

It’s tough to gauge how great the Bucks are so far this season because some of their opponents seem a bit like paper tigers. Yes, you have the gimmie win against the Houston Rockets, but you also have victories against the supposedly formidable Sixers and Nets. Those two teams are a combined 4-9 and have the league’s 19th- and 30th-ranked defense. But their other two wins are against the decidedly frisky Knicks and Hawks.

They are led, as ever, by their superstar Antetokounmpo who is averaging 34.4 points per game on 60% from the field, more than 12 trips to the line per game, 14 rebounds and nearly six assists.

Long story short, the Bucks are great again, because Giannis is a superstar who seems to never be satisfied. It’ll be a huge upset if the Pistons steal this game. They could, though.

Cade Cunningham is figuring things out. He’s getting more comfortable picking his spots, attacking the mid-range and starting to inch up his shooting efficiency and push down his turnovers. While Cunningham is the offensive engine for Detroit, it’s been a well-rounded attack from the Pistons starters that have helped make them competitive its last couple games.

Against the Warriors, four out of five starters scored between 21 and 28 points. The team was led in scoring by Saddiq Bey, who is starting to understand how to attack the rim and when to settle for the perimeter shot, with 28 points. Isaiah Stewart had a career-high 24 points and 13 rebounds. Bojan Bogdanovic had 21 points on just eight shots. And Cunningham served as the conductor, setting the pace, probing the defense and delivering passes perfectly in step with cutting teammates.

Detroit’s problem is the bench, which was limited to 17 points against the Warriors, and it only got worse as rookie Jalen Duren turned an ankle and had to be helped off the floor. Reinforcements in the form of Alec Burks and Marvin Bagley III should arrive soon, but they are not here yet and Detroit will have to muddle through in the meantime.

Projected Lineup

Detroit Pistons (2-5)

Cade Cunningham, Jaden Ivey, Saddiq Bey, Bojan Bogdanovic, Isaiah Stewart

Milwaukee Bucks (5-0)

Jrue Holiday, Jevon Carter, Grayson Allen, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Brook Lopez

Question of the Game

What’s your best Halloween costume of all time?