#Pistons fans haven’t seen a Knight of basketball like they did on Friday in quit some time. It was the Pistons youth core of Knight, Drummond and Monroe that helped power Detroit in their 91-90 win over the Raptors. With the Pistons down one, it was Brandon Knight’s dribble drive with 7 seconds on the clock that gave Detroit their third win on year.
- I’m back on the Tayshaun Prince bandwagon for right now. It’s not that I don’t think he’d fit better off the bench on a contender, but he’s doing his part this season to keep the Pistons in games. As important as Brandon Knight was down the stretch of this one, so was Prince who got the Pistons right back in the game when they handed the lead to the Raptors. Prince finished with 16 points, seven boards, and three assists in 38:19 minutes on the floor.
- Another solid game for Greg Monroe who led the Pistons with 19 points, 11 boards, a steal and a turnover in 38:24 minutes. He’s not only playing well, you can see him in every play and being a leader to this young team.
- Monroe has grabbed five or more rebounds in 104 consecutive games, the league’s longest current streak. Are you voting for him?
- I suggest you watch the highlights of this one just to see the last couple of plays unfold.
- Highlights via NBA.com
- Andrea Bargnani with 17 of the Raptors first 20 points, had one of the best games I’ve seen him play. He finished with a season high 34 on the night.
- I also didn’t know how good Toronto’s Kyle Lowry was.
- Very nice to see the Twin Towers on the court together for Detroit. You can see how productive that they can be. Drummond finished with 13 points and career highs of 13 rebounds in his first double-double of his career in 25 minutes on the floor. He had some nice highlights in this one, none better to me than when he hustled back on the defensive end to take a charge and as he lay on the floor he gave a nice fist pump when the call was made. He even was put back in the game with 16.1 seconds left in the game to help Detroit make a stop when the Pistons were down one.
Andre Drummond: “One of the knocks on me is that I don’t have a motor, that I don’t play hard every day.” “(Frank) just tells me every day, effort, that’s all you need to do. Give effort every single day, play hard and keep yourself going. So that’s what I do.”
Tayshaun Prince: “I saw a lot from him, the most important thing is when he made mistakes and he missed free throws, he just stayed the course, put his head down. Obviously it was tough for them to keep him off the offensive glass and he had key blocked shots and things like that, but I think his energy kept the crowd in the game. That’s what we need from him.”
- Detroit started the second half strong, going on an 11-0 run after Toronto scored on its first possession of the half and expanding their lead to 10.
- Brandon Knight comes out the hero in this one and rightly so. His layup to get the win wasn’t easy, but don’t forget the clutch shots late in the fourth either.
This was just the kind of game that Knight needed to kick start his confidence in his shot. Brandon finished with 16 points on 6-for-8 shooting with three assists and just 2 turnovers.
- Let’s not forget about Jason Maxiell who continues to make play and bring the energy. I don’t have the clip, but did you see the sweet bounce pass from Monroe to Maxiell for the dunk?
- Stuckey with 8 points on 2-of-9 shooting in 26 minutes.
- Kyle Singler with 6 points on 2-of-5 shooting in 28 minutes.
- Just 26 points in the paint for Toronto to the Pistons 52.
- This game was tied 10 times with seven lead changes.
- After losing double-digit leads and dropping their first three home games of the season, the Pistons have now won two straight at The Palace and the crowd truly did appreciate it.
- A Sunday afternoon SHEEDtastic matinee against the Knicks. I’m all for it!
The season of strange starting lineups continued tonight, as the Raptors traveled to Detroit to face off against the Pistons who were in the middle of a 3 game losing streak. The Pistons 4 oldest players started (with Monroe), and used a 38 point 1st quarter to jump out to a huge lead to overtake the reeling Raptors ballclub.
3 players for the Pistons carried the scoring load – Hamilton with 24, Prince with 22 and Greg Monroe with 21 to go along with 10 rebounds. It was clear the Pistons were going to pull this one out from the jump, their cuts were sharp, and their jumpshots were falling.
Rodney Stuckey came off the bench and had 14 assists to go along with 3 points (all from the free throw line) and Ben Gordon scored 6 points in 13 minutes.
- These St. Patrick’s Day uniforms have got to go – the Raptors uniforms are hideous
- Former Piston great Amir Johnson missed the game with an ankle
- The Raptors do have a pretty impressive group of youngsters who have been playing well of late – Andrea Bargnani, the most recognizable name from the bunch lead the Raps in scoring with 20 points
- Ed Davis, who a lot of Pistons expert writers were saying the Pistons would draft in this past year’s draft, was outmatched by Greg Monroe in the paint and on the boards
- 2 DNPs tonight for Detroit – Will Bynum and Jason Maxiell
- Richard Hamilton with a Pistons team high +15 on the night
- Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva played 13 minutes each – lowest minute total of all players
- The “Brazilian Blur” Leandro Barbosa filled up the cup for 18 points in 26 minutes off the bench for the Raptors
- 15,166 reportedly in attendance – the arena looked emptier than that
- Toronto was able to narrow the lead to 6 – and Detroit lead by as many as 20
- Rodney Stuckey had a career low in shot attempts tonight with 1 to go along with 14 assists. This honestly looked to me like one of those Kobe Bryant games where he tries to prove he’s not a ballhog and can be a distributor the team needs
- Hamilton, who averages 17.6 points a night against the Raptors, scored 24 points
- Recap via Pistons.com
The good thing about this win: the Pistons won. The bad thing, if there is a bad thing about winning: they’re now 6 games up on the Raptors in the Eastern Conference and they’re lined up with 6th-7th pick slot in the lottery.
Up next for the Pistons, Landry Fields brings his pals Jared Jeffries and Ronny Turiaf to the Palace on Friday when the Knicks go up against the Pistons. Pistons fan favorite Chauncey Billups will make his first appearance in a Knicks uniform on the Palace floor, so that should be exciting. Since Billups will be back in Detroit Friday, I’m sure we’ll be able to continue discussing what things would be like if we hadn’t have traded Billups 2 years ago, so there’s that…
If you’re looking for some interesting reading between now and then, check out the riveting discussion going on at Piston Powered with several of your favorite Pistons writers – N4S favorite Dave Hogg, N4S creator Natalie Sitto, DetroitBadBoys Brian Packey and Kevin Sawyer, MLive’s Justin Rogers, PP writers Dan Feldman and Patrick Hayes, and 2 guys who don’t believe other sports exist during the NBA season, then you need to make your way over there. Today they discussed whether or not Rodney Stuckey should be re-signed and in previous days they discussed Joe Dumars’ future and whether or not the team was on a treadmill of mediocrity.
Bounce back quickly from last night’s victory is what the Pistons plan to do tonight in Toronto as the e 2-2 Pistons are set to take on the 1-2 Raptors at the Air Canada center. The Pistons will again be without Tayshaun Prince and Rip Hamilton for tonight’s game against the Raps.
Who to look out for?
- Andrea Bargnani who’s putting up career numbers.
- Chris Bosh who’s always a weapon.
- Hedo Turkoglu who can shoot the lights out on a given night.
Me…. I’m hoping for a some playing time for our old friend Amir Johnson, especially after I found out he shouted me out on RaptorsTV.
Tip off is at 7:00 PM and will be locally broadcast on FSN. You can also listen to the game on 97.1 The Ticket or follow the game on NBA.com.
After last night’s battle, I’m hoping for an easier time from our shorthanded and injured (Will) squad.