The Pistons and Warriors have a lot in common this season. It has nothing to do with record or personnel, but injuries. Just like the Pistons, the Warriors are missing their face of the franchise, Steph Curry, and are dealing with a multitude of injuries to their role players.
Granted, the Warriors have a lot more talent on their roster that is currently on the shelf, but both teams find themselves in a worse spot than people thought they would be in because of their injuries.
Even without Curry, playing the Warriors in San Francisco will be a more daunting task than the last time these teams faced off at Little Caesars Arena and the Pistons came out victorious.
Where: Chase Center in San Francisco, CA
When: Wednesday, Jan. 4 at 10 pm EST
Watch: Bally Sports Detroit
Odds: Pistons (+7.5)
The Warriors haven’t really missed a beat since Steph Curry went down a few weeks ago and it is mainly due to Jordan Poole. The Warriors are currently on a 5 game winning streak, and Poole has led them in scoring during that streak.
Jordan Poole reached a level people didn’t think he would reach last season, and he continues to build off of that this season. It looked like the Warriors window could start to come to a close, but guys like Poole have extended their window even longer.
Klay Thompson looked rusty at times last season as he worked his way back from missing a couple seasons with injuries. His scoring numbers have hung around his career averages, but he has not shot the ball as well as he did before the injury. During the Warriors 5 game winning streak, Thompson has been just as dominant scoring the ball as Jordan Poole.
He is coming off a 54 point game in an overtime win against Atlanta where he hit 10 threes, but has also had a couple of 30 points games during this streak. With the way Jordan Poole and Thompson have been playing recently, this is a nightmare matchup for the Pistons’ backcourt.
One thing the Pistons have going for them is the return of Killian Hayes from his 3 game suspension. He is the Pistons best backcourt defender and it will be sorely needed. He has his work cut out for him trying to slow down Thompson and Poole, but he has the best shot of doing it out of anybody on the Pistons roster.
With Andrew Wiggins also out with an injury for the Warriors, they really are the Poole and Thompson show right now and that recipe has worked for them.
It is going to take a strong effort from the Pistons frontcourt to win this one, and they were dealt a blow with the injury to Marvin Bagley. Bagley will miss the next 6-8 weeks with surgery on broken fingers. His size and post scoring off the bench would have been a huge help against the Warriors smaller frontline.
The Warriors are still finding their stride after a poor start to the season, and even though they are without Steph Curry, this is not the same team that the Pistons beat earlier this season. Even the Pistons are not the same team without Cade Cunningham, but Championship teams find ways to win without their best players and that is exactly what the Warriors are doing.
Detroit Pistons (10-30): Killian Hayes, Jaden Ivey, Bojan Bogdanovic, Isaiah Stewart, Jalen Duren
Golden State Warriors (20-18): Jordan Poole, Klay Thompson, Donte DiVincenzo, Draymond Green, Kevon Looney
Should the Pistons try to add another big with the injury to Marvin Bagley or just give his minutes to Nerlens Noel?