In a recent interview, Detroit native and current Detroit Piston Josh Jackson defined Detroit sports. The former top pick told Keith Langlois,
“You see our record, but teams coming in, they know no matter who’s out, when you play the Pistons you’re going to have to come play,”
Jackson’s statement will likely be looked at laughingly by the national media. The Pistons are a 16-win team cemented at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. But, to Detroit fans, what Jackson said means the world to us.
Jackson Knows Detroit Toughness
As I mentioned, Josh Jackson is from the city. He watched the massively successful Pistons teams in the mid-2000s. The likes of Chauncey, Rip, Tay, Sheed, and Ben were all about going at it every game. They wore teams out. They hustled. Those Pistons not only saw success but had an entire city fully behind them. Josh Jackson no doubt saw all of that as he grew in basketball. He has also had to experience that grit in his own career.
Josh Jackson was a top recruit. He moved to California to play high school ball his junior and senior year. Jackson eventually starred at Kansas. After a one-and-done year, he was drafted fourth overall by the Suns. The emergence of Devin Booker combined with struggles on Jackson’s end saw him traded two years later. Josh Jackson, De’Anthony Melton, and two second-rounders were shipped to the Grizzlies for a near-40 Kyle Korver and a bench PG.
After this, Jackson found himself in the G-League. He made the most of his opportunity and was named to the Midseason All-NBA G League Team for the Memphis Hustle. Jackson then signed with the Pistons for his full NBA comeback. He continues to hustle and reprove himself on a rebuilding Pistons team in his city.
Goin’ To Work Mentality
What Jackson said means a lot for this team. Detroit is trying to rebuild that “Goin To Work” culture the franchise has not seen since 2008. There is no doubt the current roster knows their situation. However, they refuse to embrace the mentality that too often comes with being a losing team. Their approach to each game shows the foundation that is being laid for years to come, especially with leaders like Jackson in the locker room.