Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Pistons look good for another run

The Detroit Pistons may have been thumped (embarrassed would be a better word) by the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday, but there is no doubt they are going to be the team to beat in the East. What a different start to the season this has been for Flip Saunders, who was unceremoniously dumped by the Timberwolves midway through the last. Saunders in place of Larry Brown is pretty much the only major roster change for the Pistons this season, and so they make another championship run with their nucleus of the two Wallaces, Billups, Hamilton and Prince intact. That line up, when healthy and in the mood (particularly for Rasheed Wallace), is one of the more formidable defensive formations the league has seen in the post-Jordan era. Add Antonio McDyess and Lindsay Hunter coming off the bench, and it’s easy to understand why Detroit has been able to keep opponents down to an average of 87 ppg, before the Dallas game that is. With Miami stuttering a bit (not unsurprisingly, given the situation), Detroit will take some catching up. A stark contrast to the buoyant start Detroit made has been the lackluster form of the Rockets, who lost both games in the one of the toughest home stands, back-to-back games against the Spurs and Pistons. The Rockets are too dependent on McGrady and Yao Ming even with the savvy veterans Wesley, Barry and Juwan Howard. And Yao, on his part, is in constant foul trouble and in fact fouled out of the Detroit game. When McGrady is not on the floor, the Rockets look pretty bland and seem to lack any spark. As for the Spurs, some strong words from Greg Pop Popovich may have done the trick, as they start on a streak. The Spurs are too good to be around the .500 mark and are now deservingly leading the South-West, where the Mavs are breathing down, despite having lost Finley to the Spurs. Since acquiring Erick Dampier, the Mavs’ defense has been transformed; and has also been bolstered by Dirk Nowitzki’s improving defensive prowess. What of my team, the Timberwolves, and my homeboy, KG? Well, as usual, they are formidable in the familiar environs of the Target Center, but are struggling on the road. I haven’t been able to catch a Wolves game so far this season, and it’ll be interesting to see how they go about under new boss Dwayne Casey (I know precious little about him). It’s been a while since I actually lived up there in the Tundra, but I’ll keep track of their play-off march (oh yes, I believe they will ;) ). - NK


Blogger Chick Pea said...

i love my pistons.. love them.. bet on them this past year.. lost a bet, but gained a traveling visit from a friend :)

love sports.. going to the rosebowl to see the trojans win! :) cheers!

7:37 AM  

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