Game Preview: Pistons look to redeem themselves in rematch against the Boston Celtics
Tonight the Detroit Pistons (4-1) will rematch the Boston Celtics (4-2) at 7:30pm EST in TD Garden.
On Saturday night the Celtics handed Detroit their first loss of the season, destroying them 109-89. From the tip, the Celtics controlled the game, showing why they are the favorite to represent the Eastern Conference in the NBA finals.
Last game, the Celtics held the Pistons to a season low 89 points on a season low shooting of 37 percent. From behind the arc it was even worse as the Pistons shot only 18.9 percent. Overall, nearly every Piston struggled from the floor (expect Stanley Johnson) and this game was over quickly. In the first half, Boston’s reserves outscored the Pistons bench 34-9.
Blake Griffin finally came back to earth, scoring only 7 points on two of thirteen shooting and missing all four 3-pointers he attempted.
“Blake’s a handful,” Stevens said. “We knew we were mostly going to have to play small on (Griffin) or (Andre) Drummond, so we just tried to be very active around those guys.”
Said Griffin: “They are good defensively but watch the tape and go back and look. We missed a lot of open shots — I did.”
On the bright side, Stanley Johnson had his best game of the year so far, scoring 16 points on six of eleven shooting while hitting 3 three-pointers.
Tonight the Pistons will need to do a much better job defending the three-point line while being able to switch and keep up the Celtics athletic wings when they do put the ball on the floor.
Last game the Celtics wings ran wild, Jaylen Brown led in scoring with 19 points while Marcus Morris pitched in 18 and Gordon Hayward added 15.
In order to keep up with the Celtics wings rotation, Coach Casey should look to to play Glenn Robinson III a lot more. So far Robinson has played only sparingly this season and last game only played 9 minutes. However, with Luke Kennard out indefinitely with a shoulder strain, it is imperative that Robinson step up immediately. Robinson is the 3-and-d wing this Pistons team desperately needs.
Lastly, Reggie Bullock needs to start hitting shots. Currently Bullock is shooting 20 percent from downtown on 5 attempts per game. In order for the Pistons to keep up with the offensive explosion that is going around the league, Bullock needs to regain his 2017 form when he shot 44.5 percent from the three-point line.
Tonight is a tall task for the Pistons as the Celtics are one the best teams in the NBA. However, if the Pistons can shoot the lights out while putting up a valiant effort on defense, they do have a chance to win this game. Keep an eye out for Casey’s rotations as they should implement more size.
“It’s the beauty of the NBA,” Griffin said. “You normally get a chance to redeem yourself pretty quickly. We’ve got a chance to get a day of rest, get a day of work and then go on and play and little bit better.”
Celtics Daniel Theis will not play tonight as he suffered a tear of the plantar fascia in his right foot and is out indefinitely. Last game vs the Pistons Theis played excellent scoring 17 points on seven of nine shooting to go along with 8 rebounds.
Former Piston Aaron Baynes is probable to play tonight as he missed last game with a hamstring injury.
Probable Starting Lineups
PG: Reggie Jackson
SG: Reggie Bullock
SF: Stanley Johnson
PF: Blake Griffin
C: Andre Drummond
PG: Kyrie Irving
SG: Jaylen Brown
SF: Gordon Hayward
PF: Jason Tatum
C: Al Horford