What: Detroit Pistons vs. Washington Wizards
Where: Verizon Center Washington D.C., MD
The Detroit Pistons continue their four game road trip with a visit to our nation’s capital. The Pistons lost the first game of the trip in Chicago and will look to bounce back against the Washington Wizards. I am going to take a look at what the Pistons have to do to get a win today.
1.) Yes Josh Smith cannot shoot 3’s, yes he cannot shoot jumpers, yes he is a bad decision maker, but he has been the Pistons best player this season. That is not necessarily a good thing, because you do not want your best player shooting just 35% from the field while taking 117 shots. Smith is averaging 14.7 points, 8.4 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 1.7 blocks per game. He has been Detroit’s best all around player so far this season. He may not be making smart plays, but you have to live with it. Live by the Smoove, die by the Smoove.
2.) Earth to Andre Drummond, wake up! Drummond has gotten off to a slow start shooting only 42% from the field and averaging 9.6 points and 11.7 rebounds. The big thing is he is averaging 4.4 fouls per game and you only get six before you foul out. Drummond needs to work on his defense, keep his hands out of the cookie jar, and not fall for every pump fake. That is what is putting him in foul trouble this season and keeping him off the floor. While Smith may be Detroit’s best player so far this season, Drummond is the team’s most talented player and he needs to step up, stop thinking and just play basketball.
3.) The Pistons need to develop a go-to scorer late in games. It has cost them in the last two contests against Utah and Chicago. With Detroit down one against Utah, Brandon Jennings threw up a one-legged shot at the buzzer that missed and in the Bulls game, Smith threw up an errant 3 late that essentially derailed their comeback attempt. You can not go to inefficient scorers like Jennings and Smith late in games when you need a bucket due to the fact that they both make bad decisions. Detroit needs to develop a guy like Kentavious Caldwell-Pope or maybe go to Greg Monroe in the post for a bucket when needed.
Prediction: Pistons 96 Wizards 89