Opponent Scouting: LA Lakers. (2-4)
Tonight at 10:30pm EST the Pistons will wrap up their west coast trip with a game in LA against the Lakers. The Pistons are on one day of rest after beating the Warriors on Sunday night, while the Lakers are on two days of rest following a loss to Utah on Saturday.
The Lakers are very bad, which ok because they are super young and super young teams are almost always bad, but they are bad for now. Lonzo Ball may well end up being the second coming of Magic Johnson as a passer, but for now he can't score in any way and still turns the ball over a bit much. Our old friend Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is off to a miserable start from the field as well but at least he competes on defense and we all know very well that he can break out of a slump for one game at any time. Brandon Ingram has made some small progress from last year but is still super raw and needs a ton of work, Kyle Kuzma is big and skilled, Julius Randle is actually a pretty good player but he still can't shoot and struggles on defense. Brook Lopez is legit even if he is struggling out of the game, and Larry Nance is a hyper athlete. Jordan Clarkson is the Lakers leading scorer despite playing just 19.3 minutes per game, and while he is limited other than creating his own shot he is good at that. Corey Brewer runs a lot, and they have a few dudes who play a couple minutes per game.
This team is super young, and they suck on both ends of the floor. Until Brook Lopez comes out of his slump they have very little going for them on the court other than their youth.
Matchups to watch:
Pistons vs A letdown: After two huge wins, it would not be shocking if the Pistons came out flat in this game given that it is the 3rd in 4 nights. If they come out slow then the Lakers will have a chance.
Drummond vs. Lopez: Lopez doesn't play a lot of minutes but he is very good despite his early struggles this year. Andre will have his work cut out for him when he is on the floor.
Bradley vs. Ball: Lonzo Ball has had some issues against really good defensive players particularly since his handle is still a bit sloppy. Avery Bradley is a very good defender.
Tobais vs. Breaking back out: After a rough couple of games, Tobias should have a very good chance for a big game tonight. The Lakers really don't have anyone who should be able to guard him.
Pistons vs. KCP revenge game: We all know very well that despite his generally uninspiring statistics and overall effect, KCP is fully capable of exploding for a game. Given how much he has struggled so far I am a bit worried he could be in for one of those nights tonight.
So in conclusion...
Wink knowingly at your friends if:
Tobias Harris is scoring at will against weak defenders.
KCP misses a lot of bad shots.
Lonzo Ball has 10 turnovers by halftime.
Run for the hills if:
The Pistons look tired and/or uninterested.
KCP REVENGE GAME.
Brook Lopez decides to break out of his slump.
Opportunities for me to look stupid:
The Pistons look slow in the first half but come out firing in the second.
KCP has a very good game.
Avery Bradley gives Ball all kinds of trouble.
The Pistons win a fairly close game where they pull away at the end after a sluggish start.
Pistons 110 – Lakers 101.
What do you think? Will KCP have his revenge? Will Lonzo survive the night?