After losing to the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday, the Cleveland Cavaliers head to the Motor City to take on the Detroit Pistons. Before losing last three games to the Warriors, Kings, Clippers and the Lakers, the Pistons were one of the hottest teams in the league. Behind Reggie Jackson and Andre Drummond, Detroit was a pick and roll machine and started 5-1. Now, the Pistons are 5-5 and showing some cracks in their armor.
Now, the Pistons are a little cooled off and if everything breaks right, the Cavs have a very good chance to win their ninth game of the season.
Who: Cleveland Cavaliers at Detroit Pistons
When: 7:30 p.m.
Where: The Palace at Auburn Hills - Auburn Hills, Michigan
How to watch: Fox Sports Ohio, NBA League Pass
Enemy Blog: Detroit Bad Boys
Music: EWNESW - Danny Brown
Things to watch for
- Drummond is in the midst of what would be a historically amazing rebounding season if he keeps up his pace all season. And as he this post from Detroit Bad Boys notes, Drummond is outrebounding other big me the way bigs outrebound guards. That's astounding.
- How the Cavs handle Drummond should be worth watching. Timofey Mozgov hasn't been quite as good this season - although his stats are rather weird and indicate that he's been better than eye tests indicate - while Tristan Thompson has rated out as an average rim protector so far this season. At least in terms of rebounding, Drummond is probably a bit much for Mozgov or Thompson to completely dominate and handle. But the Cavs are currently one of the best rebounding teams in the league and at the very least, having to guard Drummond should shed more lights on the pros and cons of Mozgov and Thompson at center. Plus, Drummond is awesome.
- Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy was noticeably blunt when he talked about Reggie Jackson's decision making after the Pistons lost to the Lakers. And understandably so, as Jackson committed key turnovers late in that game that at least somewhat cost Detroit a win. For the season, Jackson hasn't been quite as a good as he was last season - five turnovers a game against four turnovers, still shooting under 45 percent per game, etc. - but he's dangerous player. It's a just a hunch, but if Jackson gets going early, expect to see more Matthew Dellavedova in place of Mo Williams. This is especially true if Kevin Love has a strong offensive performance.
- Suggested Pistons reads: Mike Prada of SB Nation on how these Pistons are different than Stan Van Gundy's Orlando teams, Hardwood Paroxysm's Jeff Siegel on how the Pistons have maximized spacing around Andre Drummond, Ananth Pandian of CBS Sports on how Stanley Johnson fits in Detroit, Mike Payne of Detroit Bad Boys on SVG's shaky blueprint and Bleacher Report's Ian Levy on how Reggie Jackson can prove he's worth $80 million
Fear the Sword's Fearless Prediction
The Cavs should roll here, provided they come out aggressive early and don't try to lull turn everything up a notch in the second half after sitting in cruise control during the first half. With Love leading the way, Cavs 101, Pistons 91.