The Detroit Pistons open their regular season schedule tonight at Little Caesars Arena against the visiting Chicago Bulls, though No. 1 overall draft pick Cade Cunningham will be unable to play thanks to a nagging ankle injury.
Regardless, the rebuilding Pistons will be taking the first of 82 steps on their rebuilding journey that’s seen a complete roster overhaul since the arrival of Troy Weaver prior to last season.
For head coach Dwane Casey, who is entering his 4th year on the job, he understands there will be frustration with their young asset not being able to play tonight, but the goal is to get healthy as soon as possible.
“You wanted to be healthy and get as much as you can from those groups together,” Casey said ahead of tonight’s game. “It’s good to get as many people as we can get together back healthy.”
Of course, with his young squad, there were several hard practice sessions as they prepared for this season. And it was because of the team’s youth that Casey went in that direction.
“If I had a veteran team, we probably wouldn’t have gone as hard (in practice) and done two-a-days,” he said.
For the Pistons, its imperative for team chemistry to be established early on.
“It’s important that we gel early, because if you look at our schedule … that may have caused some of those nerves too,” Casey said.
Meanwhile, there comes a certain look that an NBA coach should have when it comes to apparel. The NBA recently relaxed its dress code requirements for coaches, who were previously required to wear suits. For Casey, he sees it both ways.
“There is something to say about distinguishing yourself,” he said. “We’re the NBA. You represent a city, a state, an organization.”
The Pistons take on the Bulls tonight beginning at 7:00 PM EST.
– – Quotes via Rod Beard Link – –