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Pistons give Andre Drummond season-high playing time, win

Toronto Raptors 90 Final
Recap | Box Score
91 Detroit Pistons
Jason Maxiell, PF 20 MIN | 1-3 FG | 4-4 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 6 PTS | +2

He was fine. A bit below his typical production for this season, but whatever. Andre Drummond didn’t cut into Maxiell’s minutes because Maxiell was bad. Drummond was just better. As far as tracking the individual matchup between the two, the only category I saw in Maxiell’s favor tonight was defensive awareness.

Tayshaun Prince, SF 38 MIN | 8-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 3 AST | 16 PTS | +3

He shot extremely efficiently. He defended well. He helped on the glass. Maybe it was taking advantage of a matchup with Dominic McGuire, but Prince was excellent tonight.

Kyle Singler, SF 29 MIN | 2-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 6 PTS | +7

Not a good game for Singler, but at least he didn’t really harm the Pistons – which speaks to why he’s starting ahead of Stuckey. When Singler has an off game, it doesn’t include a ton of missed shots and turnovers.

Greg Monroe, C 38 MIN | 8-20 FG | 3-6 FT | 11 REB | 5 AST | 19 PTS | +10

Monroe (40 percent shooting and four turnovers) was not very efficient, but he produced in volume with 19 points, 11 rebounds and five assists. I’ll take that. Monroe’s 20 shots were nine more than any teammate, and that’s good for the Pistons. There’s nobody I trust more on this team with the ball in his hands. When in doubt, feed Monroe. It might hurt his efficiency numbers, but it’s good for the team.

Brandon Knight, PG 26 MIN | 6-8 FG | 1-2 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 16 PTS | +3

Knight scored half his points in the final 3:30, including the game-winning drive for a layup with 7.8 seconds left. A 3:5 assist:turnover isn’t pretty pretty, but Knight shot well, especially when it counted. The final minutes of the game definitely raised his grade a great deal.

Jonas Jerebko, PF 12 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 2 PTS | -10

Ugh. He’s been bad lately, tonight especially. He shot too often and took terrible shots – a disheartening combination. At least once defensively, he bumped into a teammate who had good positioning.

Corey Maggette, SF 8 MIN | 2-5 FG | 1-1 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 5 PTS | -3

He was basically a non-factor, but at least he played only eight minutes. Maggette is probably the Piston most likely to be gone next season. Every minute he plays is a minute that doesn’t go to a potential future contributor.

Andre Drummond, C 24 MIN | 6-11 FG | 1-6 FT | 13 REB | 0 AST | 13 PTS | -2

No play better reflects Drummond’s night than one midway through the fourth quarter. He grabbed an offensive rebound by sneakily setting up well behind a Jonas Valanciunas box out and speeding by the Raptor. Drummond jumped quickly for a putback and was fouled. In celebration, he slammed the ball to the court, and it bounced off the basket overhang and nearly hit a ducking Drummond on the way down.

Drummond might look awkward in the process, but he makes an insane number of positive plays per minute. Sometimes, it’s the result of unexpected savvy, but his athleticism and size almost always contribute.

Drummond was active on the defensive and offensive glass, and he got a lot of his shots on putbacks. I don’t know how the Pistons wanted to defend every pick-and-roll, but Drummond looked out of position at times. On one play, though, Drummond got caught in no-man’s land, but he skied to intercept an entry pass.

Drummond produced well tonight. If he figures out how to play at this level, he’ll be scary good. How can he get there? Keep playing him.

Will Bynum, PG 22 MIN | 0-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 0 PTS | -2

Let’s ignore his lack of offensive contributions for a moment. Bynum couldn’t stay with Jose Calderon, and that’s why Bynum fouled him twice and gave him space for a 3-pointer. Bynum also fouled Kyle Lowry on a 3-pointer.

Rodney Stuckey, PG 21 MIN | 2-9 FG | 3-5 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 8 PTS | -3

Until Stuckey finishes better at the rim, he’s never going to take the next step as a player. He’s still taking too many 3-pointers, and he’s not doing much besides trying to score – and he’s not doing that well.

Lawrence Frank, HEAD COACH

True to his word, he found more minutes for Drummond. The offense ran through Monroe, which is almost always a good plan, but as far as Frank is concerned, I really just care about how he develops Drummond this season. Tonight, he let Drummond play through mistakes, and it was a key reason the Pistons won. Even when making mistakes, Drummond outweighs them with positive plays nobody else is capable of making. The Pistons outrebounded Toronto 46-37 and held the Raptors well below their season average for attempts in the pain. Drummond played a big hand in both categories, categories that had often been the Pistons’ biggest weaknesses.


  • Nov 24, 201211:51 am
    by RyanK


    I wouldn’t give Frank a B, for no other reason than he took Drummond out of the game for the last possession.  Luckily we didn’t need an offensive rebound (Knight made the layup).  But if Knight had missed it, one of the best offensive rebounders in the league would have been watching from the bench instead under the rim grabbing it for a put back/foul. 
    I know Frank put a good offensive group out there…but for crying out loud!! 

    • Nov 24, 20122:35 pm
      by RyanK


      What I like best about Drummond if his attitude and his intelligence.  I was expecting a certain type of guy (dumb and cocky), but we have a guy who’s smart and has a great attitude.  I did see him knock over a glass of gatoraid on press row…I hope someone kicked his ass over that.  But other than that he’s really doing a lot of positive things. 
      He reminds me of Rodman a bit (not as high strung), but very crafty.  He looks like the smartest guy on the floor…  He gets the ball and looks to the right outlet pass instead of throwing it to the closest guard.  He’ll get a steal and survey the floor before he gives up the ball…he’s made some great plays that no one would expect a 19 year old center to make.

      • Nov 24, 20126:06 pm
        by MrBlockedShot


        I want to belive L.F. took him off the court trying to avoid a hack-a-shaq estrategy from the raptors on the last possesion.Drummond is having a tough time from the line but will get better for sure.

        • Nov 24, 20129:11 pm
          by Tangen


          That was my thought as well.

        • Nov 24, 20129:15 pm
          by RyanK


          That could be…but I doubt it.  These teams don’t know anything about him at this point.  He’s taking full advantage of it.  I doubt they know he’s a terrible free throw shooter if they pay no attention to him on the offensive glass.

          • Nov 25, 201212:01 am
            by Joe Dumars

            I imagine teams know about his terrible free throwing from scourting him in college

  • Nov 24, 201212:17 pm
    by Ozzie-Moto


    about time….  

  • Nov 24, 201212:22 pm
    by LT


    Dan, have you considered grading rookies on a curve? why or why not? i am genuinely interested in reading your response.

  • Nov 24, 201212:51 pm
    by Scott Free


    Brandon Knight is the only player in the league that can win a game for his team in the clutch and still get a B.  

    • Nov 24, 20121:28 pm
      by Patrick Hayes


      ‘B’ is fair. Knight made a great play and was good overall in the final minutes. But if he played better earlier in the game, they probably would’ve had a lead and wouldn’t have needed him to hit a game-winner.

    • Nov 24, 20123:27 pm
      by Vic


      Knight has always been clutch. Put him in the right position and he’ll make a good decision. 

      But he played 3 horrible quarters 

    • Nov 25, 20129:40 am
      by tarsier


      Most of the time, if a player plays as overall a poor game as Knight did, he deserves a lower grade than a B. Being “clutch”, besides most likely being a purely mythical property (as documented by many stats experts), is way overrated. Better to have your player make one of his misses earlier in the game and miss the final shot than vice versa. Why? Because then he won’t actually miss the final shot because he won’t get a chance to. With the ball and the lead and less than 24 seconds remaining, the other team will foul and then the player gets the much higher percentage FTAs instead of a FGA.

  • Nov 24, 20121:00 pm
    by 313


    Finally…. AD gets times and wow they win and he produces. And i hope Joe D watching because aside from Knight the guards need to GO!

    • Nov 24, 20121:29 pm
      by Patrick Hayes


      For real. The guard play has been so hard to watch this season. Even average production out of the backcourt as a unit and this would be a lot more competitive team. Bynum and Stuckey have been awful and Knight has been so up and down.

  • Nov 24, 20121:38 pm
    by Domnick


    my concern right now is jonas jerebko.. what happened to this guy?
    he has been playing so bad recently..’
    another, is brandon knight going to be our point guard of the future? he doesnt seem to fit in that position… he’s got potential but way out of control… his game was like mike conley (during rookie years).. i just hope bk can be better every season..
    stuckey.. nevermind… if i were joe d… lets find him a taker!

    • Nov 24, 20124:10 pm
      by Nick


      @Domnick I agree with the Conley and Knight comparison.  I am from Memphis and almost everyone here was pissed when they gave Conley a new contract. His first four yrs in Memphis he flat out sucked. Right now Conley looks like he can get the most improved player award. We should stick with Knight at the point for a while and give him a chance to learn the position.

      • Nov 24, 20126:37 pm
        by Lake Side Live


        Hey Nick, take inside info on the mike conley comparison, I guess the only thing I question about is do the pistons have the time to let Brandon Knight develop into a pg before we potentially lose Greg Monroe to FA.  According to shamsports a great site for contract and salary info:  By Knights 4th year Monroe will be in the last year of his contract.

        I’m wondering within that timeline would it be more prudent to let knight play to his strengths, 3 point shooting and driving layups as a shooting guard, and bring in a guy who already knows the point guard position like a jose calderon who’s a FA this summer.  To get the maximum out of Brandon and Greg while we have them.

        • Nov 24, 20126:38 pm
          by Lake Side Live


          sorry “great take with the inside info”

  • Nov 24, 20122:05 pm
    by Mel


    Guard play: Something I really don’t understand with this team under Frank. Last year Stuckey and Knight looked like the second coming of Zeke and the Microwave, a little bit. But now the guard play is awfully inconsistent, it’s as if they just played together. Stuckey is playing like a totally different player now, even shots he use to make he misses. Something is definitely going on with him and Bynum is who he is, he’ll give you an occasional good couple of games then fall back into his normal pattern of turnover prone, inconsistent, take it to hole against 7footers, and get blocked games. I’d rather have Stuck and English coming off the bench you know English will make shots. I believe a lot of the x’s and o’s Frank incorporate is too much for some of the players. That’s why Knight is having such a hard time playing his full game. During summer league and preseason he was dishing the ball and scoring.

  • Nov 24, 20122:50 pm
    by Jay


    I loved the last play. Knight saw that Lowry was hurt and took it right to him. Just like “Embrace the Process” thought, I too think Knight called it for himself. Monroe should’ve done the same with Jonas V’s injury. Drummond, Monroe, and Knight finishing it off well. Tay played his Tay game haha. Good win. But seriously, can we please trade one of the bench players for Marshon Brooks of the Nets. He ain’t even playin in Brooklyn but he’s definitely got some talent that we desperately need (he can shoot outside and create his own shot)

  • Nov 24, 20123:51 pm
    by Vic


    I’m looking forward to Michael carter Williams or Trey Burke… If not Shabazz.

    I think the more Knight plays with Drummond the better he’ll play. 

  • Nov 24, 20124:36 pm
    by Mark


    “As far as tracking the individual matchup between the two, the only category I saw in Maxiell’s favor tonight was defensive awareness.”

    I agree with everything else, but I don’t really get this at all. Maxiell got destroyed by Bargnani, and I thought Drummond’s defensive awareness was awesome last night, a big reason we won. Exemplified by plays like the steal at the end, and the contesting of Lowrys 2nd to last shot, as well as contesting/altering many others at the rim.

  • Nov 24, 20125:10 pm
    by bugsygod


    Drummond imo seems to actually make the game easier for his teammates.  Someone mentined the dennis rodman comparison and i think that fits along with ben wallace type guys…except better.  His hustle and energy helps monroe down low where he does not have to get every rebound or make every play. The ability for frank to sub drummond for monroe for defense says alot considering this was end of the game crunch time mintues.  So good going forward that frank may now trust drummond more and this will lead to more minutes.  i mean the guy really only played 24mins and seemed to change the entire game.  Monroe is going to be that steady rock every night and drummond is that wild card is shot blocking tonight? monster board game? big scoring nite? steals, etc? 
    So it looks like the frontcourt is solved for the next few years.  We now can use all the cap space, trades, draft to address the backcourt.  would love to see maynor from the thunder to back up and push knight.  with the frontcourt being the focus we really need shooters at the 2spot.  and milsap from jazz as back up big.  i think jerbko will be ok and will make for a great combo big off the bench play a little sf and pf.  stuckey, max, bynum, daye are all trade bait at this point going forward.  we should be looking for 3pt shooting and playmakers(guys to get the ball to drummond/monroe). 
    frank is another story.  why play maxiel the ENTIRE 1st q and 3rd q?  that was just weird. like he wanted to give both max and drummond equal chance to show what they can do.  Well we know who won that.  But hopefully now he plays drummond and he can stay off the hot seat. 

    • Nov 24, 20126:13 pm
      by MrBlockedShot


      Playing Drummond with our second unit is killing his developmen: He is not capitalizing from Monroe’s passing hability, Stuckey and Bynum are playing their worst ball ever and Jerebko is on a neverending slump. Insert A.D. into the starting five, put CV on the inactive list and activate Slava as our backup center.

  • Nov 24, 20126:32 pm
    by Ozzie-Moto


    Given Detroit’s M.O. the last 5 years there still plenty of politics,  back side protecting and stubborn preconceptions going on in Frank’s and JD heads.    They only good reason for some of the minutes is to up trade value but that if anything is backfiring because of the player not playing great.  Lets get on with the “new” players. Much better developing players this year than one more delusional year of waiting on very so so players to step up. they have had their chance.

  • Nov 25, 20127:42 am
    by Zekekhaseli


    I agree w ozzie. Im tired of the politic of playing the veteran disregarding the merits. In today’s nba its just not working. Yes we have history of goin to work and bad boys its time to reinvigorate the stones culture with youth movement. Thats why i think laurence frank doesnt fit the bill. Hes no game changer. Hes playing safe

  • Nov 25, 20128:34 am
    by israelipiston


    game is 8pm my time so I have a chance to watch – anyone have any links
    thanks very much 

  • Nov 25, 20129:17 am
    by milton F.


  • Nov 25, 20129:46 am
    by Corey


    No need to worry about Monroe leaving. At the end of his rookie contract he’s an RFA. Either they sign him to an extension first (most likely) or they match whatever offer sheet he gets. The only way they lose him after the rookie contract is if he’s so repulsed by the team he signs his qualifying offer for a one year contract for something in the range of one year, $6-8 million. No one does that when they have a four year $50m offer on the table. It’s when that first extension ends that people leave as free agents.

  • Nov 25, 201210:32 am


    i am late i know, but frank grade is too high cause even when he does something right it still doesn’t seem like its on purpose. Drummond deserves an “A” not because of the rebounded and scored but because he made so man huge defensive plays down the stretch , imagine what happens when he starts to get his shot blocking timing down. Knight is a PLAY-MAKER! he is more like Billups than any other point guard you have to let him play his game, but offensively he carried us down the stretch plus the go ahead basket give the man an “A”

  • Nov 25, 20121:54 pm
    by Crispus


    Did you see those two Isolayshauns at the end? Clutch!

  • Nov 25, 20122:26 pm
    by ZekeKhaseli


    Frank doesnt deserve a b

  • Nov 25, 20122:27 pm


    Franks gotta go man

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