Game Recap/Notes: Game #24. Pistons 107 - 76ers 95. 13-11.

Bench blew a couple huge leads but that is not a huge surprise. The starters dominated very easily, and outside of a short period in the 2nd quarter where the Sixers crawled within 4, it was not every really in doubt. (and the reality is that it was not very much in doubt then either.) So yeah, would have been nice if the bench had showed a wee bit more competency but in the end, it is hard to complain about the game. Also, the Sixers freaking suck. Assume that all comments here are made with the against the Sixers qualifier.

Box score.

Reggie Jackson: Not a huge numbers night for Jackson, 21 points on 21 shot equivalents, 4 assists and 3 turnovers. But the reality is that it was a very nice game for him. He had a little stretch at the end of the game where he committed a couple turnovers/missed some easy shots because he was clearly in cruise control. But most of the game it was pretty clear that he could get a look whenever he wanted. I don't have a lot of doubt that if this game had been closer Reggie would have gone off for a huge game. (largely based on the fact that in the first half, when the game was still in some question, Jackson had spectacular numbers) Even though he did get a bit sloppy towards the end, this was a good game for Jackson. Scored in a good variety of ways and kept the ball moving (even if he did not end up with a don of assists.

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KCP: Offensively, he was very "meh" which is actually an improvement because he did not actively hurt the Pistons offense. However he was spectacular on defense. He was a big piece of the fact that for several stretches the Sixers were having trouble converting simple-ass passes. And once again, his offense was not horrible by any stretch. 13 points on 13 equivalents and 2 assists. This is the KCP I am totally ok with. When he is locked in on defense he does not need to be all that good on offense, he just needs to do enough that he does not submarine the offense. And I cannot stress enough how brilliant his defensive performance was tonight. Good game overall. One thing though. Even though he hit it, I really wish he would not pull up for transition 3s.

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Greater Morris: Had a sort of low key awesome game. 21 points on just 11 equivalents, as well as 8 boards, a steal, and a block. He appears to be charging out of his early season shooting slump from range which is super good to see. Also, he had 4 assists as well. His passing has remained as easily the most surprising thing from him for me. He really makes smart passes, even if he does not always hit them. He was drawing double teams (and one triple team though I'm not sure that was on purpose) and made really nice plays out of them. His decision making is generally very good. He was also part of the starters stifling defense and gave issues for the Sixers in doing basic NBA things like, passing. Excellent game for Morris.

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Ersan Ilyasova: Another sort of low key very nice game. 15 points on 13 equivilents, as well as 8 boards and 2 assists. He got lots of open looks and he capitalized on them. His defense was actually super helpful tonight as well, and not just in the charge drawing department. (which is something that I am not sure has been true in any other games this year) He had 2 steals and was yet another long armed dude who got all up in the passing lanes of the Sixers and there was no good post player for him to have to guard and give him any troubles. HOWEVA. Those Charges tho. It is literally to the point that it is comical to watch guys run into Ersan when he is so clearly ready for them. And then they look so surprised when a charge is called. Like watching on TV you can see it coming a from a long ways away but they fall for it damn near every time. It is hilarious and made this game much more entertaining. (he was not the only one doing this tonight either.)

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Andre Drummond: Really nice game for Andre tonight, but I'm going to start off with the negative. Why on earth does he just not guard guys away from the basket. Not that Okafor is some awesome shooter, but he can hit that shot if you play off him that far. And it is bizzare because I think Andre is absolutely quick enough that he can get out on guys and stick with them without too much trouble. I am curious to know how much of his sitting in the paint is Andre and how much is SVG though. But either way, it is stupid. He has given up a lot of easy buckets this year like that. Now that that's out of the way though, the like, 2 times Okafor tried to go inside Andre ate him up, and also scored very easily over Okafor. Throw in a dominant defensive performance in the paint that featured 4(!) blocks and 2 steals. (to keep his streak of games with a steal alive btw) and you have a excellent all around night for the big man. And FWIW, it is kind of funny how Andre makes some traditional stats almost useless. He scored 18 points on 17 shots (20 equivalents) but 5 (I think) came on a single trip where he got rejected repeatedly by Noel, but Andre kept gettting the ball back. He has several trips per game like that where he misses several shots but just gets the rebound and ends up with like 4 or 5 shots on one trip. And after that trip Blaha mentioned that the Pistons had missed 7 shots in a row, but it was funny because those 7 were on just 2 trips. Either way, really nice night for Andre. And a big thing that is easy to overlook, is that Andre is making really good passes when he does pass. It's overlooked because he just does not pass all that often, but when he does they are generally good passes. Nice game for Drum Drum though.

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Stanley Johnson: Did not do a ton, scored 4 points on 6 shots. And the Sixers offense is so bad that he did not get to do a lot on defense. But once again, with a rookie, when he is able to not do anything that stands out as really bad, that is a win.

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Tolly: Also did very little. 1/3 from the field, and yeah, not much else. He is getting a little bit trigger shy though, which he cannot afford to be. When he gets a look, he has to fire away, because his shooting is his only real asset on the court. Either way, it was a not very good night for him.

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Steve Blake: Yeah he kind of sucks still. Could not really defend anyone, and did not make much of a dent on offense. Big gripe here though with SVG. IF (emphasis on IF) Steve Blake is actually better than Dinwiddie and Blake is easily the 2nd best PG right now and is the guy you want to have him be an important and positive part of the team. THEN WHY THE HECK DOES HE CLOSE OUT THE END OF THE GAME WITH THE BENCH MOB. He is 36. That's old as dirt. If he really is so much better than Dinwiddie then why on earth would you risk injuring him in garbage minutes. Makes no sense to me there. Anyways, a very bad night for Blake.

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Aron Baynes: Stat line looks nice. 3/4 from the field, with 2 boards, a block and an assist. But that would be incorrect. His defense was, um, not good. Okafor made mince meat of Baynes. (which is a hard mathup for Baynes but still) Bad night for him as well.

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Darrun Hilliard: To be clear, I am very glad that he is getting playing time. I've been very vocal that someone else needs to get a few minutes at SG. HOWEVA, I'm not so sure about Hilliard right now. Every time he hits the floor he is trigger happy, but the problem is that he never really hits them. And he is absolutely lost on defense. The defense is understandable because he is a rookie. But if he is going to be that bad on defense/shoot so damn much on offense, he has to hit like, a couple of shots. But I'd rather have him come on and miss jumpers for a couple minutes and not kill KCP though. Also, Bullock played but he did nothing.

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General: The bench sucks. It was so bad that there is no way that any of them can claim to have had anything other than a really bad game. That was ugly. Okafor is a legit talent and I actually think that when all is said and done people will wonder why he fell to #3 (although that is admittedly just a hunch and not really based on anything real) and outside of the one sequence where he blocked Andre like 4 times he did not look very good. It was also a little bit sad to see Covington, because the Pistons should have had him. I'm curious if Hilliard/Bullock keep up being so horrible if Covington would be a trade option. (not saying he would be "the missing piece" or anything. Just looks to be the swiss army knife type that would be super useful on the Pistons bench.) But anyways, the Sixers are horrible. And while I am not one of the people who is in some way offended by the Sixers, I give props to any Sixers fans who stick with this team. They are so bad. And I would hate it. (and as a fan of most sports teams in Michigan I have been through some really bad times.) Either way, the bench sucks but thats nothing new. Solid win, much harder game tomorrow night.

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What do you think? Think I'm stupid? Let me know! We all get smarter!

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Also you should totally follow me on twitter.

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P.S. I've gotten a couple questions a from a few people.

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  • What are shot equivalents? Shot equivalents includes FT. And while technically there is a formula that takes into account and-1s but for my purposes, each FT attempted=.5 a shot equivalent. Just gives a more accurate representation of how efficient a guy is. So like, James Harden might score 30 points on just 13 shots which sounds straight crazy. But then you find out he shot 10 free throws. So he actually scored those 30 points on more like 17 shots. (which is still super good obvoiusly but it's not quite as crazy.)

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  • What is on my twitter? I basically am using it right now as my in game notes. I take notes during the game anyways and I basically just tweet them now. And I don't really use it outside of that right now. So if you want a sort of stream of consciousness/random observations on the Pistons game that is going on then you'd probably like it. If it would annoy you to have your feed taken over on many nights by random shit from a Pistons game then you would probably not like it.