Pistons Notes: Cunningham, Durant, Garza, Livers, Lee, Rotation

Hoops Rumors

Kevin Durant offered high praise for top pick Cade Cunningham after the Nets’ narrow win over the Pistons on Friday, Omari Sankofa II of the Detroit Free Press relays (Twitter links).

“I love Cade’s game. I think he’s going to be a tough, tough player for a long, long time,” Durant said. “I got to know him when he was in high school so we got to build a little relationship. To play against him in the NBA is sweet.”

Cunningham had a team-high 17 points in the 96-90 loss. He missed the first four games with an ankle sprain.

“We had a lot of conversations about being on this level and what it took,” Durant added. “To see him out here battling through some injuries in the start, but to come out here and play aggressive tonight and hit some big shots, I’m happy for him and looking forward to seeing his career.”

We have more on the Pistons:

  • Cunningham has shot poorly thus far but he’s not hesitant to take big shots and he shrugs off criticism, James Edwards of The Athletic writes. “I know what comes with being the No. 1 pick, the target on your back,” Cunningham said. “People want to see you mess up. I’ve always just been myself. I’ve never changed myself to feel like what people feel I should be like.” Cunningham is shooting 23.2% from the field and 14.3% on 3-point attempts.
  • The team assigned rookies Luka Garza and Isaiah Livers and second-year guard Saben Lee to the Motor City Cruise after Friday’s game, the team’s PR department tweets. The NBA team doesn’t play again until a road game against Houston on Wednesday.
  • Prior to the latest losses, coach Dwane Casey said he didn’t plan on making any major rotation changes in the near future, according to Rod Beard of The Detroit News“We will look at things for 20-game increments to see why our young guys are and to see what we have and see how they react,” Casey said. “They’re our future, our foundation, so there’s no use of flipping the lineup or changing lineups trying to (fix things). Their growth is the most important thing and I think I’ve said it a million times.”

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