Pistons Notes: Quirky Numbers from the Preseason
The preseason is finally over. Finishing with a 2-3 record over their five preseason games, Detroit appears to be nearing full health as the regular season draws near. Preseason is always interesting, and some quirky numbers always come as a part of preseason. Some are good, some bad, and others meaningless. Let’s take a look at some interesting statistics from the Pistons’ preseason.
Statistic #1: Did Andre Drummond become a competent free throw shooter?
This is a pretty important question, and we saw some pretty shocking results from the preseason. Drummond attempted 20 free throws in three preseason games. Surprisingly, he connected on 16 of those free throw attempts, debuting a new free throw form. That comes out to an 80 percent conversion rate.
It would be shocking to see Drummond shoot with that success level throughout all 82 regular season games but any improvement would help. He shot 38.6 percent from the free-throw line last season.
Statistic #2: Stanley Johnson is showing signs of a developed three-point shot.
One of the outlying factors as to why Stanley Johnson has come off the bench for the first two seasons of his NBA career was that he could not adequately hit the three-point jumper.
Well, it appears things have changed. Johnson appeared in four of Detroit’s five preseason games and flashed an encouraging three-point shot. He attempted 16 three-pointers over those four games and connected on seven of those 16 attempts, coming to a percentage of 43.8 percent.
Much like Drummond’s free throw conversion rate, it seems unlikely for Johnson to continuing hitting threes at the rate he did in preseason. But as a career 30.1 percent long-range shooter, he needs to improve his efficiency from deep and he showed that may be possible with his shooting display in the preseason.
Statistic #3: Through five games, the projected starting lineup did not play a minute together.
The Pistons were banged up all preseason, and because of that, their projected starting lineup never spent a minute on the court together over any of their five preseason contests.
Reggie Jackson missed the first two games of the preseason. Andre Drummond and Avery Bradley each missed a pair of games. Tobias Harris and Stanley Johnson each missed a game apiece as well. The closest Detroit got to playing their starting unit together was last night against Milwaukee when every projected starter played besides Stanley Johnson, who has not yet been named the starting small forward.
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