Game Recap/Notes: Game #81. Pistons 93 - Heat 99. 43-38. Onto the Cavs.

I have an irrational fear of Joe Johnson. Except that it is not irrational. Its totally rational. He just single handedly downed the Pistons. It happens. Pistons are the 8th seed and will play the Cavs. Which means no games will be on NBA TV which is good.

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Box score.

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Steve Blake: Well, if there is one positive to take from this game, it is that when he needs to, SVG knows how to freaking hide Steve Blake. The Pistons managed to hide Blake from the ball on defense allowing them to retain their defensive integrity and largely used him as an off ball shooter on offense, which is a role he can actually be pretty decent at. Playing with other guys who were capable of taking the majority of ball handling duties was a big positive for him. Because the one thing that is undeniable is that Blake is in damn near constant motion on offense, and if you are any threat as a shooter (which he is) the simple act of running hard around the court helps the offense. So in the end, he does still suck, but playing alongside strong players and getting to run pick and rolls with Andre proved that he could be hidden on defense, and be a part of a competent offense. And FWIW, in a role like that, he is not so bad on offense. He is basically like Reggie Bullock (who I'm a big fan of) the issue is that he still can't defend anyone. But regardless, through him playing one of his better games and clever scheming by SVG (or bad scheming by Spoelstra, I don't know for sure lol) he managed to not kill the Pistons. Which is all you can really ask for from him.

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KCP: Pretty solid game for KCP. His offense was passable, he got a few extra shots without Reggie on the floor and finished with 17 points on 18 equivalents, and his defense was its usual excellence by holding Dwyane Wade to a pretty poor game and ending up with 3 steals to show for it. It is a bit upsetting that he could not manage to get a single assist when there are some to be had with Reggie out of the game, but still. Pretty solid game for KCP.

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Tobias Harris: Meh. 16 points on 18 equivalents and a couple assists. His shots were high difficulty, but this is a game where you really look for him to step up with Reggie out. He did manage to make a few nice defensive plays ending with a couple blocks which was nice to see. But still, they needed more out of him tonight and they did not get it. The Heat were keyed into Harris and he had to force some bad shots. Still though, its not like it was a horrible game for him, he did ok, just wish he had done better is all.

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Greater Morris: 16 points on 16 equivalents, a couple assists. One of Mobias had to have a really nice game, and they didn't. Neither was bad but one of them had to be better. Morris did do his thing though getting some really hard shots in the midrange to fall and had a (at the time) clutch put back and-1 towards the end of the game. HOWEVA, for the 2nd time this season, he got absolutely torched down the stretch. (Remember the Paul George game?) And he got torched. There was not a lot he could've done differently to stop Joe Johnson, but it still happened to him so he gets the blame there. Still though, not a horrible game, just needed some more.

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Andre Drummond: I loved Andre in this game. He did not succeed in finishing enough of his looks, but he generally took Whiteside to pound town for 4 quarters, and that was awesome to see. Ending with 18 boards, and he fought through a lot of hard opposition from Whiteside and company to get a lot of them. Other than (a admittedly killer) offensive board that Whiteside grabbed with about a minute left, Whiteside struggled to really keep Andre off the boards. Obviously some of Andre's offensive issues were Whiteside, and some was Reggie being out, but I still feel like he normally has at least a couple more buckets. Still, I love that a game after people were making a big deal about him moping he came out and played harder than pretty much anyone else on the floor. We want him to be like this for the playoffs.

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Spencer Dinwiddie: 6 points on 7 equivalents, 3 assists on 0 turnovers. So a perfectly nice game for Dinwiddie. (Like I pointed out before the season) He does have a knack for getting to the line, shooting 4 FTs in just 16 minutes, but he would have helped himself out if he had hit a couple more of them lol. His defense was a little bit scary though. His length does legit bother people, that is clear. But his inability to navigate screens was a little absurd. It is not the end of the world, because there are a lot of 2nd year players who have been in the rotation their whole careers that struggle to navigate screens still. But holy crap he got murdered on some screens. Still though, it kind of makes me angry to see him play and look like a totally serviceable player when SVG has refused to give him a shot all season. And he did absolutely look very solid on offense.

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Aron Baynes: 5 points on 5 equivalents, 3 boards. Just kind of did his thing, if not as much as we would like. Honestly that is all I've got for Meat tonight lol. He just kind of did his thing, nothing special, just another day at the office.

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Stanley Johnson: The extra rest seems to have done some good for Stanley, he made several really nice defensive plays, and ended the game with 5 points, 5 boards, a steal, and an assist. He only played 14 minutes, but he played hard and with his athleticism, when he is playing full tilt he is a seriously disruptive defensive force. SVG said the Pistons would need his defense in the playoffs, and that is absolutely true, hopefully he can find his offense back before they start though.

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Reggie Bullock: 2 points, an assist. Nice to see SVG go to a 10 man rotation and let both Stanley and Bullock play in the same game. Man though, this dude is such a high IQ player, it is fun. I think the Pistons would do well to keep him in the rotation for the playoffs.

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Anthony Tolliver: Hit a couple 3s, drove hard to the rack and drew a foul, 7 points on 4 equivalents. Nice game for Tolly.

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General: Reggie better have a fake injury because if he is actually hurt the Pistons are going to get roasted. The Pistons are now locked into the Cavs in the playoffs, so we all get to watch playoff LeBron. Yay.

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Programing note: The Pistons play tomorrow and neither team is playing for anything. So I'm not going to bother doing a scouting report (I work in the morning) so here is the overview. DON'T GET ANYONE HURT OR WORN OUT REST UP HOLY CRAP PLAYOFFS. Yep. Also, I did a Pistons only award ballotto try and give us something to talk about till the playoffs start. Go give out your Pistons awards and do some pointless arguing. It'll be fun.

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What do you think? Pistons in 6?

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Other Thing: So some of ya'll said I should do a gofund me, so I have created a gofund me. I made one. Here it is.So if you wanna help a dude out then that's where you can go. If you don't want to, I still love you. If you don't know what I'm talking about, then go to the end of this post hereand read that. The goal is at $1000 because I meant to do 10 dollars and was trying to eat some pizza at the same time and I don't know how to change it lol. There is no real goal. No matter what I'll get some posts up, more funding means more likely I get more up while I'm gone. Ya'll are super cool.