Game Recap/Notes: Game #26. Pistons 107 - Hornets 108. (13-13)

Bad loss. Frustrating loss. It’s a tough month but this is a game you have to win. They outright blew this one.

Box score.

Reggie Jackson:

18 points on 16 shot equivalents and 2 assists. His defense was about as bad as it’s been all season which is saying something as well. one of those missed shots tonight was an especially egregious screw-up where he caught the ball and just stood there while the clock wound down before chucking up a terrible 3. Like he didn’t even dribble. It was awful.

I just don’t know. I am probably one of the few people left who still really believes in Reggie Jackson, but I don’t believe in him in the role Dwane Casey has him in. Jackson took 11 of his shots from beyond the arc in this game, he’s taken nearly 50% of all shot attempts from 3 this season. There is a conversation to be had about whether or not Jackson is good enough to be even a secondary focal point in the offense, maybe he isn’t. But there is at least a question there. There is no question that he isn’t going to produce at a consistent level when his entire game is focused around his biggest weakness. If Casey really thinks so little of Jackson’s ball-handling abilities, then it may truly be time for a new point guard in Detroit.

Bruce Brown:

Getting the start, Brown helped make life tough for Kemba Walker for a lot of the 2nd and 3rd quarters, although down the stretch Kemba got whatever he wanted and Bruce did very poorly. The best news is that he continues to be effective in trying to take advantage of the fact that no one guards him on his way to a 4/5 shooting night mostly on cuts. He did have one nice floater out of the pick and roll that shows a flash of what could maybe be.

I still have a problem with Brown, yet again, being the Pistons heaviest usage wing player, but that isn’t his fault. He remains a huge detriment to the offense with how opponents totally ignore him, and he’s not as good on defense as he sometimes looks like he is, but the Pistons definitely made a good pick.

Luke Kennard:

Started off the game very poorly, but bounced back a bit. Scored 6 points on 8 shots (started off 0-5) and had, once again, a near team best at +2 on the night. After missing a few early shots he kind of fell out of the offense and only ended up playing 25 minutes.

Blake Griffin:

Missing a pair of free-throws at the end is incredibly painful, but Griffin still played a brilliant game. 26 points on 20 shot equivalents, 10 rebounds, 7 assists (against just 2 turnovers) in 36 minutes of work. He fouled out Marvin Williams, and generally was great, a couple of gaffs at the end of the game doesn’t change that, the points count the same all game long.

The only real complaint is that Griffin was probably a bit more ball-dominant the entire night than I would prefer, even by his standards.

Andre Drummond:

Not the gaudy numbers usually associated with a good Andre Drummond game but this was a pretty good one. 14 points on 13 shot equivalents with 13 rebounds, 1 steal, and 6(!!) blocks. Blake’s total domination of the ball always has the most negative effect on Drummond’s offensive numbers due to Griffin never running pick and rolls (whoever makes that decision, whether it be Casey or Griffin, needs to pull their head out of the sand btw. Blake should be the ball-handler in pick and rolls with Drummond.) but he still did well with his opportunities.

A lot of people complained about Drummond’s pick and roll coverage and inability to contain Kemba Walker. If you thought this, then you should probably take some deep breaths. Kemba Walker makes a living making good defensive big men look silly, Drummond did better than just about any big does against him. Drummond made some mental mistakes early in the game trying to balance containing Kemba with not leaving his man open beyond the arc, but he cleaned it up.

Langston Galloway:

28 minutes, 17 points on 12 shot equivalents. Galloway was hitting his shots tonight which was nice, his trigger-happy gunning is big for the Pistons when he’s on. He did struggle mightily on defense but so did all the other perimeter guys. Good game for Galloway.

Jose Calderon:

Played 21 minutes for some reason, but he did fine. 4 points on 9 shots but 2 of those were absolute chucks. Also had 5 assists on the night and went just -1. Calderon isn’t all that good, but he isn’t a corpse.

Stanley Johnson:

First game back from injury. I’m assuming that the 18 minutes is a result of not wanting to play him too much out of the gate. Did mostly fine, 5 points on 6 shots with 5 rebounds and 3 assists. Jeremy Lamb did hit the game winner over him but Stanley was right there. Good to see Stanley back on the floor and looking spry.

Zaza Pachulia:

Played 16 minutes, 4 points and 3 rebounds. Leaky defense but did fine.

Jon Leuer:

Only played 6 minutes and scored 5 points on 2 shot equivalents. I really think he should replace Zaza in the rotation.

General:

If this wasn’t a losing streak then you just say “sometimes you lose the close games” and move on. The Pistons played pretty well most of the game. But when it is the 6th straight loss and they are now at .500 it is a lot more painful. Next game against Boston is very important.


Joseph SinkeComment