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Pistons rally late, fall short against Magic in Orlando

Detroit Pistons 86 Final

Recap | Box Score

87 Orlando Magic
Josh Smith, SF 29 MIN | 4-10 FG | 3-4 FT | 8 REB | 4 AST | 4 STL | 0 BLK | 5 TO | 13 PTS | +12This was a hard one because after looking pretty solid in pre-game shooting drills — both mid-range and 3-point jumpers — he came out laying bricks early. There were times in the first half where Smith looked uncomfortable, but he really came alive in the fourth. He was the catalyst in the Pistons’ comeback, hitting 2-of-3 from deep. It also requires mentioning that his early-clock heave from downtown with the Pistons down one with 30 seconds left was just terrible.
Andre Drummond, C 37 MIN | 6-9 FG | 2-4 FT | 15 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 1 TO | 14 PTS | -12Drummond had what’s become a pretty standard game for him. Crazy to say that, eh? He did the dirty work, rarely tried to do too much and played pretty solid defense. He, like Smith and Greg Monroe, is still learning what his role is, but if he plays near this level in the regular season, well, that’s a great role.
Greg Monroe, C 35 MIN | 7-11 FG | 5-6 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 3 TO | 19 PTS | +9It was a quiet night for Monroe, who didn’t really do much until that fourth-quarter run. He didn’t rebound well, and came out surprisingly slow against the mighty Orlando frontline of Solomon Jones and Kyle O’Quinn. His two blocks and steal are solid, preseason or not.
Peyton Siva, PG 47 MIN | 3-10 FG | 5-5 FT | 4 REB | 7 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 9 TO | 12 PTS | +4There were plenty of times where Siva looked bad tonight. Considering he played all but one minute due to Will Bynum being out with food poisoning, it turned out to be a gutty effort. His slashing-and-passing was the reason the Pistons looked great early. Once the Magic adjusted, he had nowhere to go, and that’s where the nine turnovers started.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, SG 35 MIN | 4-9 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 11 PTS | +1There’s definitely two dimensions to Caldwell-Pope’s offensive game — KCP behind the 3-point line and inside of it. Tonight he made two from deep, and in the preseason he’s 6-for-18. However, he’s only 9-for-29 inside the arc. He’s a good 3-point shooter now, but as he adjusts to the NBA game, he’ll improve inside, too.
Tony Mitchell, PF 6 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | +5Mitchell didn’t play a whole lot, but when he did he brought a bundle of energy. He used his athleticism to corral some pretty impressive rebounds above the rim. There was also a horrific sequence of trying to throw flashy passes on the break, which not-so-shockingly didn’t work out well at all.
Charlie Villanueva, PF 15 MIN | 4-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | -9He came out locked and loaded, per usual. There were some flops, there were some weak attempts at rebounds and there were plenty of shots fired up. It wouldn’t surprise me if Villanueva entered the season as the first big off the bench for the Pistons over Jonas Jerebko — purely because he spaces the floor better.
Jonas Jerebko, PF 15 MIN | 1-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 2 PTS | -11Battling for that primary backup gig, tonight’s shooting woes probably don’t help his cause. Jerebko did rebound well, and he brought some energy — which head coach Mo Cheeks mentioned that he wanted out of his bench before the game.
Kyle Singler, SG 21 MIN | 1-6 FG | 4-4 FT | 3 REB | 2 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | -4I wouldn’t say he did anything really bad tonight, but he didn’t do anything amazing either. He still just does a lot of Singler-y things out there. I’m not sure how to quantify that, but it’s him. He even spelled Siva at the point for the one minute he got a breather in the second quarter.
Maurice CheeksIt’s pretty difficult to grade a coach who only has two healthy guards. The team came and went with Siva’s play tonight, but Cheeks had to play the rookie. These guys are still a work in progress, and the product tonight probably isn’t reflective of what Cheeks can do or what it’ll look like with the starters back.

47 Comments

  • Oct 20, 201311:37 pm
    by gmehl

    Reply

    Hey Brady you could’ve at least mentioned Drummond’s man block or should I say block that he turned into a mid air rebound. On a serious note though it is clear that as much as this team needs the Smith, Monroe and Drummond trio on the court together to workout the kinks, they also floor spacers at the 1 and 2 to make it work. I also think Cheeks needs to stagger that trio a little more. I really want to see Datome before the season starts and with Jennings and Stuckey out likely until the season opener plus Billups taking off every second game it might be worth adding another player to the preseason roster… Myck Kabongo got released by the Spurs and might be worth a look.

    • Oct 21, 20133:26 am
      by Otis

      Reply

      If this team is going to succeed, it has to be built on the strength of these three guys. They averaged about 33 minutes each, which is probably a pretty conservative average, for how good these players are and how much you’ve invested and will continue to invest in them. Monroe is getting a max contract next season. If this team is truly better off limiting these guys’ minutes due to their lack of effectiveness as a unit, they should just go ahead and trade
      Monroe to bring in players who complement Smith and Drummond.

      • Oct 21, 20135:37 am
        by gmehl

        Reply

        What do you think should happen Otis? I really don’t want Monroe to be traded and if it came down to it I’d rather oust Smith.

        • Oct 21, 201311:24 pm
          by Otis

          Reply

          Well for one thing, how do we know Monroe and Drummond are some great fit? They looked bad together last year. So Josh Smith or no Josh Smith, you have two centers who are going to get in each other’s way on offense. The Smith contract is done. You probably won’t get a significant upgrade for Smith, and even if you did, Monroe has a huge extension coming to him next season. Plus he stinks on defense, plus he’s probably the odd man out.

          • Oct 22, 20132:37 am
            by gmehl

            Yep i like most have viewed it that way too. if Monroe is the one to go I just hope we can snag a 1st rounder (maybe Boston’s) and some outside shooting. One thing is for sure on moose’s rookie deal we won’t be getting equal value for him unless we can get a 1st rounder for him and even that path will be a crap shoot.

          • Oct 22, 201312:10 pm
            by oats

            Monroe and Drummond were pretty great in the 10 games they started together. Monroe averaged 17.8 points and 9.9 rebounds. Drummond averaged 10.3 points and 8.2 rebounds in less than 26 minutes a game. I know that 10 games is a really small sample size, yet they were on the court so infrequently last year that those 10 games are probably the best means available to us for evaluating how they worked as a pair.

    • Oct 21, 20131:04 pm
      by Brady Fredericksen

      Reply

      Datome is still nursing an ankle injury, if I remember right. He’ll get his chance sometime this season, but I can’t see that being before the opening of the regular season.

      • Oct 21, 201311:25 pm
        by Otis

        Reply

        But there isn’t room for everyone in the rotation. Can he defend well enough to get minutes over Singler?We’ll see. But it’s not like you’re just going to add his shooting to the equation without losing something.

  • Oct 20, 201311:43 pm
    by The Guru

    Reply

    Singler is a bum!.. That guy should get a F every game…

  • Oct 21, 20131:44 am
    by pistons moribund

    Reply

    The shot from Josh with 30 ticks left seemed reasonable.  At the time it seemed bad but the more I think about it, the more apparent is seems that Mo wanted a quick shot and then let the defense handle it.  If it doesn’t go in, then they can have another chance, plus they also had another foul to give.  Makes sense.  The team didnt really execute though, not Mo’s fault.
    Monroe seems meh?  Sell high or lose him for nothing.

  • Oct 21, 20132:43 am
    by Jens

    Reply

    I am pretty concerned about the Team right now. Because of all the guards injuries there hasn´t been any flow so far and it might take the first 20 games of the regular season to really see, where this Team might get. But so far my personal observations are:

    -Siva: Yes, he played his heart out at Orlando, yes I am very happy he is on the roster, yes there is potential. But can you Play him right now in an NBA game that has to be won right now? No way!

    -KCP: A disappointment so far. Can´t be played in the regular season either, so far. Might take a year or two to develop. But at Orlando you could see the big difference between the Magic´s comparable Players like Harkless, Moore and Oladipo and KCP. They are simply way ahead of him in the development.

    -Singler: Ok, he never totally stinks, but I start questioning his potential, whether he can be more than a solid 10 to 15 minutes a night backup at the 2/3.

    -The three headed frontcourt Monster: There is hughe potential, but it really will take some time and very good guard Play to bring out the best in them. I really hope Chauncey has something left in the tank. But IMO if I am asked who to Keep -Monroe or Smith- for the next three years, I say Smith. If not both are possible keepers.

     -Jerebko: Too bad he starts screwing up everything he earned at the beginning of the preseason. That´s the Jonas that has no yalue on a Team like the Pistons.   

    -Villanueva: Ughhhh! He is sooo bad on the defensive end, it even shows in the preseason. But because of his scoring ability he has to Play ahead of Jonas. I still hope Gigi sneaks in and takes up all of Jonas, Charlie V´s AND Singlers minutes   

  • Oct 21, 20133:24 am
    by Some Dude

    Reply

    I’ve been impressed with our rookies guards. They deserve a lot of credit for their roles so far filling in for the injured. Obviously things have been pretty, they’re rookies. But the extended minutes is only a good thing for their development.

    - Siva did as well I he could do for 47 minutes. He shouldn’t be in the rotation once everybody is healthy. But he’s prove he’s got heart and guts. He can fill in fine if somebody gets hurt/foul trouble for 10 minutes a game. It won’t happen often, but good to know Siva is back there.

    - KCP has been getting better in each game. He’s scoring more, and his efficiency continues to grow (slowly) but it’s getting better. He’s still getting his feet wet, but he definitely should be getting rotation minutes. Once he gets used to the NBA game he’ll be dangerous. He played better than Olapido.

     

    • Oct 21, 20133:25 am
      by Some Dude

      Reply

      *haven’t been pretty

  • Oct 21, 20133:37 am
    by MrHappyMushroom

    Reply

    Maybe a little generous on the grades, as they indicate that everyone had an “average” or better game in a loss to a dreadful team.  Pre-season and all, but when the first forwards off the bench shoot a combined 2-15, I’m seein’ some room for Ds and Fs there….
     
    If Cheeks called Smith’s shot with 30 seconds to go, then he decided that a 28% likelihood of a make (with little chance of a foul) was preferable to a 50% chance of a make (with getting a foul calling being possible) and he’d either better wake up or go hang out with Frank, Keuster, and MCIAFI on weekends.
     
    If Smith decided to launch that one, Cheeks should have pulled him off the floor and made it clear that he doesn’t play on offense late in the game until he stops that crap.  Based on 9 years in the NBA, the odds were between 2:1 and 3:1 that Smith makes that shot.  You don’t come back from 23 points down to piss into the wind like that.

    • Oct 21, 20131:43 pm
      by Brady Fredericksen

      Reply

      Yeah, but on the same token, it’s hard to penalize everyone when they’re playing with a second-round PG who played 10-million minutes.

      • Oct 21, 20132:56 pm
        by Huddy

        Reply

        Preseason isn’t the same a a regular season Win/Loss.  Coaches are trying out different things and ultimately would like to win, but they make decision they wouldn’t usually make in the season so it it is possible for everyone to be average to above average and still notch a loss.  Orlando is a worse team than the Pistons, but as Brady mentioned the Pistons spent the whole game without their 1, 2, of even 3 PG in the game.

  • Oct 21, 20137:20 am
    by Corey

    Reply

    Cheeks may have wanted a quick shot for a 2-for-1 chance. If they shoot with 30 seconds, they will get another possession without fouling. If they wait until 20 seconds left, not likely.

    on a brighter note that matters more for the pistons long term than anything else this season: Dre shot 50% from the line. Every game he shoots 50% or better from the line is a GREAT sign for the future. I think he’s done it every game but 1 in the preseason. If his average stays over 50% this year, there is no limit on that young man.
     

    • Oct 21, 20137:25 am
      by MrHappyMushroom

      Reply

      Oh, no problem with two for one.  Good idea.
       
      Josh Smith forcing up a shot that he will miss 72% of the time is appalling, especially when two points is what you really need.
       
      Dump it into the post.  Drive to the hoop.  But don’t throw up a shot that you will miss nearly there times in four.  Taking that shot was essentially like rolling a three-sided die and hoping your number comes up.

  • Oct 21, 20138:06 am
    by jinzzy

    Reply

    singler is looking like a bum , on a positive note Siva is looking good 

    • Oct 21, 20139:37 am
      by tarsier

      Reply

      Apparently, 3-10 with 9 TOs is the new definition of “looking good”.

      • Oct 21, 20139:56 am
        by jinzzy

        Reply

        he was tired , he played heavy min that’s why he was turning the ball over a lot  

        • Oct 21, 201311:05 am
          by tarsier

          Reply

          So sloppy play on account of being tired is the new definition of “looking good”?

          • Oct 21, 20132:48 pm
            by pistons moribund

            Whatever happened to letting someone play through their mistakes?
            hmmmm, rookie? hmmmm, only PG on the team not sick or injured? hmmmmm preseason?
             
             

          • Oct 21, 20133:03 pm
            by Huddy

            I don’t think the point was that he shouldn’t have played (or that there was any other option).  He got solid minutes, was able to play even after a considerable number of mistakes…and he had a bad performance.  He did not look good.  Regardless of age or draft position 9 TOs and 30% shooting is a bad performance.

          • Oct 21, 201310:04 pm
            by CityofKlompton

            On next week’s episode of Irrational Peyton Siva Love Fest…

          • Oct 22, 20131:29 am
            by tarsier

            Right on Huddy. I’m not criticizing the Pistons or Cheeks for playing Siva. I’m not even criticizing Siva because he played about as well as I expected. I’m just confused by the notion that he was looking good in this game.

      • Oct 22, 20138:49 am
        by MIKEYDE248

        Reply

        Just wondering…If he had gotten 10 turn overs, would that have gone towards a triple double?

        • Oct 22, 201310:09 am
          by tarsier

          Reply

          Well he’d also have to get 10 rebounds or 10 assists. And then they’d reference it as an undesirable triple-double. But no, they wouldn’t count such a thing toward a player’s career triple double count.

  • Oct 21, 20139:07 am
    by hoophabit

    Reply

    Regarding Mitchell; “a horrific sequence of trying to throw flashy passes on the break, which not-so-shockingly didn’t work out well at all”?  His line says he had zero turnovers, not having been able to see the game I’m wondering what happened that qualifies as horrific?  This is not to say that Mitchell doesn’t need to play within himself and his role.

    Tough to draw conclusions from these games given our guard situation.  I have to agree that every game AD shoots FTs at 50% or better is very encouraging.  If Drummond can sustain the improvement he has shown so far it moves him from flawed athletic freak to bona fide NBA center.

    • Oct 21, 20131:44 pm
      by Brady Fredericksen

      Reply

      it wasn’t that they resulted in turnovers, it was that they just blew easy fast-break chances. An off-target pass that the streaking forward can’t handle most times is just as problematic as a turnover.

  • Oct 21, 201311:52 am
    by Rich

    Reply

    I can already tell Josh Smith’s shot “selection” is going to drive me nuts all year.

    The preseason game against Cleveland was the only one I’ve been able to watch so far, and he took so many awful, awful shots.  Sounds like he’s still at it…

    On the plus side, he’s not shooting it a ton overall.  Hopefully that trend continues.  His value isn’t as a scorer – he’s a pretty lousy one.  His value is his ability to do everything else on both ends. 

    • Oct 21, 20132:57 pm
      by Brady Fredericksen

      Reply

      The only way their big lineup is going to work is if he’s a legit threat to make and take shots from deep(ish), so it’s kind of a necessity. Him bringing the ball up court a decent amount is what was odd to see.

      • Oct 21, 20136:51 pm
        by joe

        Reply

        I don’t mind J Smith taking 3′s, I would just like for him to take a page out of Lebron book at the end of the game and put pressure on the other team defense by threaten to go 2 the whole.

    • Oct 21, 20133:13 pm
      by Some Dude

      Reply

      You can’t just judge one game. And Smith shot selection has somewhat improved, I’ve seen 4 games so far. He’s shooting 44% overall, and 43% from 3pt land so far. That’s acceptable. He’s are best player, and should be our main offensive player. That doesn’t mean he has to have the most points, but the offense will go through him.

  • Oct 21, 20137:46 pm
    by Keith

    Reply

    Let’s just hope the defense is lights out once the regular season starts. Because the currently incarnation of this team is going to be a sorry sight on offense most nights.

    • Oct 22, 20132:39 am
      by gmehl

      Reply

      Might be keeping that 1st rounder after all… sorry Charlotte :-)

      • Oct 22, 201310:12 am
        by tarsier

        Reply

        The Pistons aren’t going to have a bottom 8 record. To keep their pick, they’ll have to do a miserable job this season, miss the playoffs, then get incredibly lucky and jump to the top 3 in the lottery.

        • Oct 22, 201310:32 am
          by I HATE FRANK

          Reply

          Im not even concerned…

          Brandon Jenning we all agree is different level of PG we’ve had in Detroit, its not even a far stetch to say that Jenning is the best PG we’ve had in Detroit since Zeke…

          I know Billups was great…. Jenning is faster, quicker, and has better court vision than Billups had…. Billups was stronger, and more savy and had enough talent around him to hide his weaknesses….

          Anyway back on topic…Jennings on this current roster is simply another level of talent…

          Siva might be as athletic as Jennings just can shoot or break down his man like Jennings…

          Bynum physically just as gifted as Jennings, but he can kill you with his pull up off the pick n roll like Jennings

          and Billups just isnt what he use to be…

          People are saying they dont want Jennings shooting, Im saying he gonna have to shoot….In Detroit Billups only shot over 44% twice and only averaged 7 ast twice….but yet were a legit play-off team….

          Im saying jennings can be who he is and we’ll still be a very good team….but if he takes his game to another level…we’ll be a scarey team

          • Oct 22, 201310:56 am
            by tarsier

            Billups was way better in his prime than anything Jennings has showed so far. And how do you figure Jennings has better court vision?

          • Oct 22, 20131:07 pm
            by oats

            Jennings hasn’t outplayed Stuckey from 3 years ago yet. That’s Jennings last year, which was his best season as a passer. Look at the per 36 numbers. They are pretty darn close. Then notice the true shooting shooting percentage. Stuckey shot .544 while Jennings shot .510. I’d also say that Stuckey is the better defender of the two. It’s darn close, but I’d give the edge to Stuckey.

          • Oct 22, 20139:20 pm
            by Max

            Jennings is a lot better at making flashy passes in terms of vision and routinely throws passes Billups would never attempt.  Billups was much more a general though and understood how to control the tempo of a game.  I think Jennings is potentially better than Billups but has a lot to prove.  

  • Oct 22, 201310:32 am
    by Schmidt

    Reply

    I’ve been watching Bill Simmons and Jalen Rose’s NBA previews on YouTube. They are both pretty high on the Pistons, picking them as the 6 seed. However, Simmons floated a possible trade. Let’s say that this experiment with Smith, Monroe and Drummond doesn’t work out. They just can’t space the floor. Let’s say that Eric Gordon comes back healthy and plays well. Would you trade Monroe for Gordon/Ryan Anderson? Think of Ryan Anderson playing with Dwight. He would be a huge floor spacer and open things up for Smith to get to the basket. I kind of like it, again, only if things don’t pan out for the Pistons. Could be a deadline deal.

    • Oct 22, 201310:34 am
      by Schmidt

      Reply

      What I meant was- Remember Ryan Anderson playing with Dwight? It could be a similar situation playing with Drummond.

    • Oct 22, 201310:59 am
      by tarsier

      Reply

      Just as long as you recognize that trade would essentially be Monroe+next year’s FA for Anderson+Gordon. It could still be worth it, but you have to factor that in.

      The thing is that Gordon would have to get back to playing like he did in LA to make that worth considering. If he does so, are the Pelicans still ok with this deal? 

      • Oct 22, 20131:15 pm
        by oats

        Reply

        Right, Gordon hasn’t just missed games. Eric Gordon has lost his 3 point shot too. There is no way I would consider moving Monroe for Anderson and an oft injured SG that can’t actually shoot, especially considering how big that contract is.

      • Oct 22, 20139:27 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        I think the Pelicans would jump at that trade either way cause Gordon would still be a risk and they have Holiday and Evans under contract.   Monroe is also a more perfect fit with with Anthony Davis than he is with Drummond.  

  • [...] talented, and young frontcourts in all of the NBA.  As Brady Frederickson, also of Piston Power, assessed of his recent 14 point/15 rebound/2 block effort: “Drummond had what’s become a pretty standard [...]

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