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Game Review: Detroit 95, Toronto 76

Well, all that fuss about a new, bigger lineup didn’t exactly pan out. The Pistons’ starting lineup lasted just 4:29 before a substitution had to be made.

They were outscored, 10-2.

They were outrebounded, 6-2.

Raptor power forward Chris Bosh, guarded by Amir Johnson instead of Tayshaun Prince, went 4-for-4.

Enter Jason Maxiell.

Maxiell replaced Johnson and provided the defense, hustle and inside game Detroit needs from its power forward. With the help of the fourth-year player from Cincinnati, the Pistons cruised to their biggest win of the year.

Maxiell went 7-of-10 for 16 points, grabbed a season-high 11 rebounds and had two blocks.

It’s just one game, but Detroit coach Michael Curry should give Maxiell a fair chance at starting over Johnson.

  • Richard Hamilton didn’t have his best performance in his first game coming off the bench in nearly seven years. He scored seven points on nine shots. And he played just 17 minutes, but a lot of that had to do with the game being out of hand late.
  • Unburdened with guarding power forwards, Prince was in the flow offensively. He made 11-of-16 shots and scored a game-high 25 points. 
  • Stuckey never seemed to take over the game, but he finished with 17 points, 7 assists and just one turnover. It’s amazing that this is now a quiet game from him.
  • Arron Afflalo didn’t make an appearance until the beginning of the fourth quarter. His minutes will definitely be down in this new rotation.

1 Comment

  • Jan 21, 200910:17 pm
    by BallOccasionallyFibs

    Reply

    I think Maxiell’s strong showing doesn’t necessarily mean he should be immediately inserted into the starting lineup. The struggles of late show that maybe it’s better to have various weapons coming off the bench, and overloading the starting lineup with all your strongest players might cause more trouble than good.

    Maxiell’s best performances as a Pistons generally come when he’s entering off the bench and giving a spark to the team, and giving the Pistons’ opposition a different look than they stated the game with. If he’s starting, teams can prepare for him right off the bat.

    Having to adjust to a Maxiell off the bench is a more daunting task than doing the same for Amir.

    Either way, nice win. Hopefully it’s a sign of things to come.

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