Well, I’m glad that’s over.
Your Detroit Pistons lost 130-106 to the New York Knicks after giving up 72 points in the first half of play, and going into halftime down 20 points. The Pistons made a 21-6 run in the third quarter and closed the gap to 12 points, but the bench lineups, in particular, struggled to make anything happen on either end, and the deficit ballooned back above 20 points in the fourth, and that was the ballgame.
Saddiq Bey and Bojan Bogdanovic were bright spots for the Pistons offensively; Saddiq put up 26 points on 15 shots, including 4-8 from downtown (nice to see after a quiet first game against Orlando) and Bojan scored 18 points on 9 shots, getting several transition baskets where the Knicks just never stopped the ball. Cade Cunningham had a productive but inefficient night (15 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, 4 turnovers, 16 shots), and Jaden Ivey had a near double-double with 17 points and 9 assists.
Giving up 130 points should let you know how bad the defense was, though. The Knicks flew up and down the court in transition, beating the Pistons back down the floor for easy baskets, or taking advantage of live ball turnovers to get out and run the floor.. When they weren’t doing that, the Knicks were shooting 10-15 from downtown in the first half, getting open shots off defensive miscues from the young Pistons.
The all-bench lineups were awful:
#Pistons bench brigade tonight offensively:
Killian Hayes: 0-5 FG
Hamidou Diallo: 1-5 FG
Kevin Knox: 1-6 FG
Cory Joseph: 0-1 FG
— Aaron Johnson (@AJohnsonNBA) October 22, 2022
Hard to make a dent in a lead with that kind of “production” off the bench.
Kevin Knox and Killian Hayes, in particular, need to contribute more offensively in their roles for this team to have a chance to compete more often. Knox, of course, is a borderline rotation guy playing because of injuries to Alec Burks and Isaiah Livers; Killian Hayes has no such excuses. Killian has 10 assists and 1 turnover in two games this season, and none if it matters if he can’t put the ball through the rim on his own.
Okay, okay something nice: The Pistons had 26 assists on 39 shots, and have done a good job of moving the ball through their first two games. Jaden Ivey looks like a legitimate weapon offensively and has been a highlight factory in his two games:
End of niceties. It was a bad night for the Pistons. Now, Detroit has to get on a plane, fly to Indiana, and prepare to give a better effort on both ends of the floor against the Pacers (who out-tanked the San Antonio Spurs tonight, losing despite 26 points off the bench from Bennedict Mathurin) on a back-to-back.
No rest for the kids. See y’all tomorrow.