Editor’s Note: Two writers accidentally put together an observations piece, so we will just go with it and push out two of them. If you would like to read the other piece, it can be found here.
The Pistons were on a roll tonight as they completely demolished the Washington Wizards by 30 points! Putting on a nice shooting clinic as well. They played to their strengths tonight and played one of their better games of the season (especially after announcing the loss of Luke Kennard to injury). This was a much-needed confidence booster as the team preps to go on a 5-game west coast road trip. So we’re switching it up this time as we provide our 3 observations from tonight’s blowout win.
Making It Rain!!!
Somebody call Fat Joe and Lil Wayne because the Pistons were making it rain tonight against the Washington Wizards. Detroit showcased tonight why they are the 3rd highest three-point shooting percentage in the league entering tonight’s game, nailing 19-48 three-pointers, shooting at a 40% clip. It honestly felt as if no one on the team could miss from deep.
All the Piston players did a good job of carefully and confidently picking their spots to shoot from. The team played well in their system, keeping the ball moving and constantly probing the defense for the right opportunity to shoot.
They completely manhandled the short-handed Wizards with their excellent three-point shooting—crippling any opportunities the Wizards thought they may have had by simply shooting them out the game.
This is what the Pistons pride themselves on hopefully becoming—a three-point shooting team that also defends. Even though all this success from tonight’s game against a team that is missing some of highest scoring players on the team, the Pistons should still feel proud and confident heading into future games based on their performance tonight. The personnel on this team is built to be a three-point shooting team, but they just haven’t been able to consistently dial it in from deep…hopefully, this is a sign of things to come.
Rebounding Still Presents an Issue
Even on a night like tonight where the Pistons literally beat their opponents by over thirty points, the Pistons still seem to visibly struggle as a unit when it came to rebounding the ball on both ends.
Detroit lead Washington in the rebounding category, 48-44, but that doesn’t tell the actual truth of this story.
Even with the Pistons winning the rebounding battle, they are severely lacking in the rebounding department as a whole on a regular basis. The team doesn’t have the depth in personnel in the frontcourt to consistently outmuscle and outrebound their opponents. Too many times did we see the ball be shot and miss off the rim and the Pistons constantly must tip the ball up in the air just to get a second chance at trying to rebound it.
Washington on the other hand, had more lankier players who used their length to help supplement their ability to rebound the basketball. Even with Detroit winning by 30 points, they only held the rebounding advantage by four more rebounds—normally when most teams beat a team by 30 points the rebounding difference is much greater than that. I can only imagine that if the Pistons weren’t so unconscious from the three-point line tonight, then this game would’ve been won based on rebounding, and could’ve ended much differently.
No Superstar Performance, but Still a Solid Win
The Pistons only have one true star-caliber player on the team in Blake Griffin, but as of late he has been underperforming and hasn’t lived up to the expectations that he created last year when he averaged 24.5 points per game.
When Griffin not living up to expectations and battling reoccurring injuries, the team came in tonight and provided a supporting role performance that was more than enough to put the Washington Wizards away.
Literally, everyone stepped up!
Andre Drummond came through and help down the fort in the post, scoring 14 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.
Tim Frazier provided a calm and assertive presence at the point guard position, dishing out 6 assists but also scoring 17 points, knocking down 5-6 three-pointers.
Christian Wood and Derrick Rose were once again the spark the team needed off the bench. Rose scoring 15 points and also handing out 6 assists, while Wood posted up a game-high 22 points.
Until Blake Griffin finds his groove back and starts to perform like the 6-time All-Star that he is, we all have to admit that this team will lack the star power needed to help them win games. So until that time arrives, the team will have to collectively rally behind Griffin and provide him with that supporting level of excellence that we all saw tonight.
Drummond, Rose, Luke Kennard, Tony Snell, Bruce Brown, Wood, etc, will all need to do a better job at trying to help Griffin when it comes to scoring. The team will need to help him utilize his exceptional passing ability and help supplement his inability to consistently shoot right now, by getting open and knocking down open shots when teams double-up on Griffin and he kicks it out to his teammates. Again, tonight was a great night for Detroit, but with a road-trip coming up in a few days, it would behoove the team to ride this wave of momentum into their next game.
(Featured image by Time Fuller/USA Today)