The youth movement has officially kicked off in Detroit.
The Detroit Pistons (19-39) lost at home to the Milwaukee Bucks (47-8) tonight 126-106. The Milwaukee Bucks played almost flawless basketball through the first two quarters, only committing one turnover in the first half. The Pistons, on the other hand, finished with 11 turnovers through two quarters and found themselves down 70-41 to end the first half. The Bucks kept their foot on the gas in the Motor City through the second half, and the Pistons could only watch as the team with the leagues best record embarrassed them their first game back from the All-Star break.
In case you missed it, Andre Drummond (trade) and Reggie Jackson (buyout) are no longer with the Pistons. Andre Drummond was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers before the trade deadline, and Reggie Jackson agreed to a buyout during the All-Star break. Jackson officially signed with the Los Angeles Clippers earlier today.
Luke Kennard (knee) remains out for the Pistons and is “a ways away” from returning, according to Rod Beard of the Detroit News Report. Once healthy, Luke will likely be tasked with scoring and play-making for the Pistons. Kennard is now the longest-tenured Piston on the roster.
In a surprise move by Pistons’ head coach Dwane Casey, Christian Wood was moved to the second unit in tonight’s defeat. Prior to tonight’s lineup change, Christian Wood averaged 20.2 points, 10.2 rebounds, 1.8 three-point makes and 0.8 blocks through his previous five games. Wood finished tonight’s game with 18 points, 11 rebounds, and one block.
Pistons first-round rookie Sekou Doumbouya, who replaced Wood in the starting lineup in tonight’s defeat, finished with eight points. Sekou figures to get extended minutes for the rebuilding Pistons for the rest of this season. Sekou is a building block for the Pistons, so letting him get extended minutes will allow Casey to see what he has in the hopeful future star. Sekou (19) is currently the youngest player in the league.
Pistons’ second-year guard Bruce Brown Jr. finished tonight’s game with 16 points, 10 rebounds, and seven assists. Brown has been a nice surprise for the Pistons in his second year, displaying a nice all-around game most nights he receives consistent minutes. Brown also figures to get all of the minutes he can handle to close out the second half of the season.
Derrick Rose finished tonight’s game with 12 points and four assists. Thon Maker finished tonight’s game with 11 points, six rebounds, and two blocks.
The Bucks were led by reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. Giannis finished tonight’s game with 33 points, 16 rebounds, four assists, and three steals. Ex Piston Khris Middleton finished tonight’s game with 28 points for the Bucks.
The Pistons are off the next two days but will return to action Sunday night against the Portland Trail Blazers at 9 PM.