Pistons eager to tip off voluntary group workouts in home city bubble

Detroit News

It’s not just the playoff teams that are in a basketball bubble.

The eight teams who didn’t finish the regular season after the NBA season restarted in July are getting an opportunity to work in their home markets with their players, beginning this week.

That includes the Pistons, who are eager to begin the three-week process to ramp up their individual work and catch up on some of the synergy that the other teams in Florida have had with their young players.

The first stage of the mini-bubble is a continuation of the one-on-one work that players have been doing with coaches, but now includes daily COVID-19 testing and restrictions on traveling between their homes and the practice facility.

The two-week second stage begins next week and will have everyone in a hotel and traveling strictly between the practice facility and a local hotel.

Coach Dwane Casey is looking forward to the opportunity to work with his group, which won’t have veterans Derrick Rose or Blake Griffin, nor unrestricted free agents Christian Wood or Langston Galloway.

The mini-camp is voluntary for players but Casey was hopeful that the developing players would attend. He confirmed that Luke Kennard, Bruce Brown, Sekou Doumbouya, Svi Mykhailiuk, Khyri Thomas and two-way players Jordan Bone and Louis King are there, as well as Tony Snell, Thon Maker and Justin Patton.

Each team is allowed five additional players from its G League squad as well, which allows them to have more people available for team drills. Casey said getting back together for five-on-five work will be critical because of the long respite.

“They’re tired of beating up the coaches, so to speak,” Casey said Wednesday. “So, it’s going to be really geared toward playing.”

Rod.Beard@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @detnewsRodBeard

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