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Ben Wallace replaces Jonas Jerebko in starting lineup against Houston Rockets



  • Pistons: 3-10
  • Rockets: 6-7

Probable starters



  • Kyle Lowry
  • Kevin Martin
  • Chandler Parsons
  • Luis Scola
  • Samuel Dalembert

Las Vegas projection

Spread: Pistons +7.5

Over/under: 189

Score: Pistons win, 98.25-90.75

Three things to watch

1. Ben Wallace starting

Keith Langlois of Pistons.com:

#Pistons shake up lineup: Ben Wallace starts due to upcoming rash of post scorers. Jonas to the bench.

LFrank says need to protect paint better, so Big Ben starts for now. Plan is he plays 1st 6 mins of each half, spotted in 2nd, 4th quarters.

Makes sense to me.

2. Brandon Knight’s offense vs. Kyle Lowry

If the Pistons continue to start Brandon Knight, it’s clearly to challenge him. Tonight, he’ll face a stiff test. Kyle Lowry is one of the NBA’s best defensive point guards, and he averages a robust 2.1 steals per game. Knight’s turnovers have been problematic, and unless Knight has made real progress – which he might have – Lowry will exploit this matchup.

Favian Pua of Red94 also sees this as a key matchup, but probably for optimistic reasons than I do.

3. Greg Monroe’s defense vs. Samuel Dalembert

After the Rockets win over the Wizards yesterday, Kyle Lowry said Samuel Dalembert was still working his way back into playing shape. Dalembert still scored 20 points on 9-of-11 shooting against Washington, but at 30 and maybe a touch out of shape, he’s not relying on the type of athleticism that often gives Greg Monroe trouble. Instead, Dalembert frequently established strong inside position, which allowed for plenty of layups and tip-ins.

Monroe’s lack of foot speed makes defense difficult for him, but I think he has the physical attributes – or at least, can more easily develop them – to use his weight to keep bigs out of the paint. Dalembert will be a good gauge of Monroe’s progress in this regard.


  • Jan 17, 20127:51 pm
    by frankie d


    it is going to be a tough lesson for knight tonight.
    i just saw lowrey go off for 33 points, 9 assists and 9 boards against a couple of veteran point guards in raymond felton and jamal crawford.  he torched…torched them.     he only had one steal but it just seemed like he disrupted everything portland tried to do offensively.
    he is like a pit bull.  an extremely tough matchup and i wouldn’t be surprised to see a lot of bynum and stuckey on lowrey.
    kevin martin will be tough also.  if stuckey has to try to guard lowrey because of the size matchup – lowrey is just so strong – then k-mart is going to be a tough matchup for the rest of the pistons’ guards.  it should be interesting.
    franks has realized what some of us have been saying for a while: JJ has been physically dominated by too many PFs and scola would take him to school.  actually a good move, in the sense that ben is the best match for monroe on the front line, though it is a horrible admission of failure, needing ancient ben to start, when he should be an emergency big man off the bench.
    charlotte’s mullens gave monroe trouble with his combination of quickness and length.  dalembert’s game is predicated on those qualities.  will be interesting to see how monroe attacks him.

  • Jan 17, 20127:58 pm
    by gmehl1977


    I have been calling for Big Ben to come into the starting lineup for a while. I think you will see JJ benefiting the most from this change as he can just come in with energy which he is best at. Question for me will be whether Monroe starts at 5 or 4 for both offense & defense.

    • Jan 17, 20129:22 pm
      by Vince


      Well so far, JJ is outperforming Big Ben and Monroe…

      • Jan 17, 201210:30 pm
        by gmehl1977


        Yeah so much for protecting the paint. The problem with this lineup is if the Knight, Gordon and Prince are struggling on offense then it will be easy to double Monroe due to Big Ben having absolutely no offense. As you can see by tonight with Monroe only scoring 2 points we still need the guy playing along side him to be able to score.

  • Jan 17, 201210:07 pm
    by Vince


    Well, safe to say Monroe was Dalembert’s b*tch today, if Big Ben proved anything tonight it is that JJ is still the better option at PF, this game was a horror to watch, we need something, anything to jumpstart our offense, our defence is good in parts, get rid of Wilkins, Daye, Maxiell and CV, let Macklin play! This is ridiculous, we may as well finish the season at 3-63 and get Drummond (Unibrow Davis hasn’t convinced me).

    • Jan 17, 201211:18 pm
      by Daye and Knight


      Clearly you didn’t see the kind of game Davis had tonight Dude has already set the school record in blocks…you know what, just turn on sportscenter I’m sure they’ll be talking about him at the beginning of the hour at 12…1…2 and so on Davis is our guy! Plus Drummond is supposedly going back to school next year so he’s out regardless…maybe he heard we were likely to get the first pick and bailed out lol

  • Jan 17, 201211:06 pm
    by frankie d


    before the game i noted that monroe had trouble with mullens’ length and quickness. dalembert’s combo of those same traits killed monroe.
    that is monroe’s kryptonite so far. he needs to figure it out. shooting the midrange may be the answer.

  • [...] Ben Wallace replaces Jonas Jerebko in starting lineup against …By Dan FeldmanEssentials. Teams: Detroit Pistons at Houston Rockets; Date: Jan. 17, 2012; Time: 8 p.m.; Television: Fox Sports Detroit Plus. Records. Pistons: 3-10; Rockets: 6-7. Probable starters. Pistons: Brandon Knight · Ben Gordon · Tayshaun Prince …PistonPowered [...]

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