The Pistons came into a team that was off a back to back. And despite for a second game in as many nights, the Wizards came out with more energy. However, as the game went on and Cade Cunningham and Marvin Bagley found their rhythm, the Pistons gained control. But when the game’s final buzzer expired, Detroit fell just short, losing to the Washington Wizards 100-97. Marvin Bagley had his best game in a Pistons uniform, finishing with 25 points and 5 rebounds. He was 0-3 from the field beyond the arc, but his presence is ultimately felt in the paint and above the rim.
Cade Cunningham had 22 points on zero free throw shots. He is able to score in multiple levels, and made clutch shots in the mid range late. Even though he had is emotion show throughout the evening, he was able to still produce. Cunningham also finished with 9 assists and 7 rebounds. And there was also the play of Killian Hayes who has continued to get more aggressive with his offensive game. Hayes finished with 3 blocks 2 steals and 4 assists as well, truly leaving his impact on the entire team.
Pistons saw surge from Marvin Bagley, struggles from Saddiq Bey
Even though the Pistons were able to get great play out of Marvin Bagley, it was the guys that Detroit missed that made the difference. Jerami Grant left the game eight minutes in with a calf strain. With just 9 games remaining, it looks likely that Jerami Grant’s season could be over. Hamidou Diallo’s season was just confirmed to be done with the finger injury he suffered. And Saddiq Bey, although on the court, struggled to score all night. Bey was 1-8 from beyond the arc. And he had yet another night where he couldn’t buy a basket. It seems his nights are all or nothing from time to time. And it’s games like these that need to become less and less common.
Detroit did see the return of Frank Jackson who has missed significant time. And even though he was in the line up, it will take time to get his rhythm back. Jackson went 0-6 from the field and only played 15 minutes of action. And despite being a constant veteran off the bench all year, Rodney McGruder had his worst game in a uniform for the Pistons, going 1-12 from the field. As a whole, Detroit shot an abysmal 6-32 from the field. Their offense came primarily from inside, and if they were able to hit their shots, there’s no question this game could’ve gone differently.
Detroit will host the Knicks on Sunday
As the Pistons head into the final days of their season, it’s now about focusing on improvement down the stretch. For guys like Cade Cunningham and Saddiq Bey, it’s about finishing the season strong. For players lower in the depth chart, it’s about proving to the organization that they belong in the future plans. For players like Marvin Bagley, it’s finishing the year showcasing what you can do, and preparing to work on expanding his game in the offseason. Perhaps even staying in Detroit, maybe even working with someone like Ashton The Trainer, would be a good idea.
The Pistons will host a Knicks team that is on the outside looking in on the playoff picture. And with a disappointing season for them is winding down, they will look to gain momentum going into their summer. And it’s a summer that will be much earlier than the Knicks organization expected. Cade Cunningham will look to close out his rookie of the year campaign strong, Killian Hayes will look to have a strong end to his year, and Saddiq will definitely shoot for more scoring frenzies. This team is still motivated, and there are still plenty of reasons to tune in.
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Featured Image Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
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