What's real and what isn't? Overreaction ratings.
This is essentially a post to look at some things people are saying after a 2-0 start. And the assign that thing a number between 1-10. 10 being "absolute overreaction this is literally impossible" and a 1 being "no shit sherlock." We'll start with some examples of either end of the spectrum.
"FINALS BOUND BABY!" - 10 out of 10. This team is not going to the finals.
"Trey Burke sucks." - 1 out of 10. He does suck. Holy crap. It hurts as a Michigan fan, but he sucks.
"KCP is going to have a breakout year!" - 5 out of 10. He has looked really good through two games. Particularly with his ability to actually score a little inside the arc. And has was really good on D every moment he has been on the floor. HOWEVA, he still looks pretty awkward on his drives and midrange game, a lot of his midrange shots are the "NonononononononoYES" types. So there is some reason for skepticism on those, however there are guys who have games like that and make it work. The main reason this is not lower is because we have seen this before last year. Not quite as good I don't think, but there were stretches last year where he would got hot and everyone went bananas because he was the next great two way player. Then he would go cold and be awful for a while. Early returns are good, but I'm not going to proclaim he is hugely improved until he shows that this is consistently what he does.
"Bench is awful" - 8 out of 10. I am in the minority I think, but I am not very worried about the bench. Steve Blake is old, but he can still run an offense, Aaron Baynes is freaking huge and can hold his own against damn near anyone. and between Stanimal, Tolliver, and Bullock (RIP in pieces Jodie) there are guys who play really hard and can score a little bit. Not to mention that at some point Brandon Jennings will be joining this crew. If Meeks is not out too long and Jennings returns in decent form, the Bench could well actually be a pretty good one.
"Andre Drummond is hella inefficient." 7 out of 10. His shooting percentage is not very good for a center, (and that is what is being referred to here.) And while I am not going to take the time to go back and find out the exact number. I would guess that a number of the misses are in those cluster fucks at the hoop where he is trying desperately to just tip it to the hoop. It would be nice if he did not need so many tries to tip in the offensive boards. And he has to hit more of his jump hooks when he gets such good post position. HOWEVA I am not that worried about it.
"Playoff Bound!" - 2 out of 10. I am obviously biased, but I thought before the season and still think that it would be surprising if the team misses the playoffs. The team will not be a world beater by any stretch. But this team has two legit all star level talents in Jackson and Drummond. (even if neither make the team this year) and a whole bunch of good role players around them. And watching the team play defense makes it clear that SVG has coached the hell out of them. Barring an injury to Andre Drummond (which would kill the team) this team will almost certainly make the playoffs. Too many good players, and a really good coach. I look at the team the same way everyone looks at Boston, where all the players are good players. Except that the Pistons actually have two awesome players to go along with the role players.
"This team will be tons of fun to watch all year." 3 out of 10. It is a slight overreaction just because there will be games that are an absolute slog like this game against the Jazz, except it won't be close enough to be pretty exciting by default. HOWEVA this team should be a ton of fun most of the time. They spread the floor, shoot tons of threes. And Andre Drummond murders people almost every time there is a missed shot. The only thing keeping this team from top notch watchability is one guy who is that they lack a real go to guy to get lots of hard buckets. Which is why there will be games like this past game against the Jazz that become a slug fest. When playing against really good defensive teams they will struggle to find consistent rhythm. Because Jackson and Drummond can't score every possession. And as much as I like him, Marcus Morris isos can only be leaned on so much in a game. And while this might just be homer biased. But I think Zach Lowe really underestimated this team in the League Pass rankings. "Stanimal for ROY" - 9 out of 10. He has looked pretty good, but he is a rookie playing on a team that is actually trying to win games. Even if he is stupendous for the team, he will not win rookie of the year because he will not have a big enough role. The only thing that could change this is if injuries ravage either the rookie class or the Pistons. (hopefully neither of these things happen)
"Our power forwards can't guard anyone." - 4 out of 10. They will struggle against bullies like Favors. But I think they will be ok. Millsap had a good game but I think that is more to do with Millsap just being really good and having a good game. It is concerning to think about what teams can do with a bully ball lineup. (Favors killed the Pistons all night) but I am not too concerned for a couple reasons. 1. There are not that many bullies left at the 4 spot. 2. Shading Andre Drummond towards that side of the floor will make human battering rams way less effective. (this happened against the Jazz) Forcing them to not just bully right to the hoop for a super easy bucket. Obviously shading Andre will open up passing lanes a bit, but that is something you are willing to give up. The other thing is that if someone like Favors or say Zbo is just killing Ersan/Morris with bully ball. The Pistons can become freaking huge by slotting Baynes alongside Drummond. That would hurt the Pistons on Offense, but good luck scoring inside with those two down low. I would wager that the Pistons are able to have the biggest strongest front court lineup in basketball with those 2 on the floor. Because both Baynes and Drummond are freaking huge. Defense on the wing is still going to be an issue though. Because even though the Pistons can counter it pretty well, any big physical wing is going to give the Pistons trouble, whether that be the biggest baddest wing in Lebron James, or even old man Joe Johnson. KCP does not have the bulk (or the height) to really guard those guys to well. And while Marcus Morris is a tuff dude who will bang with anyone, he is not exactly a defensive stopper. (although I have been pretty impressed with is defense so far.) This was also a problem last year though, and will be a challenge for SVG to deal with. Fortunately SVG is a good coach so I think more often than not he will concoct a plan that allows the team to survive. (as they did in the first two games)
What do you think? Think I'm stupid? Let me know! We all get smarter!