Pistons get a taste of the East's best for the second straight game

Essentials

Teams: Detroit Pistons at Boston Celtics

Date: April 3,  2011

Time: 6 p.m.

Television: Fox Sports Detroit

Records

Pistons: 26-49

Boston: 52-23

Probable starters

Pistons:

Celtics:

  • Rajon Rondo
  • Ray Allen
  • Paul Pierce
  • Kevin Garnett
  • Glen Davis

Las Vegas projection

Spread: Pistons +11

Over/under: 185

Score: Celtics win, 98-87

Three things to watch

1. Will the Pistons put up a fight?

The Pistons hung around with the best team in the East Friday, although never really felt like a threat to overtake Chicago in that game. They’ll get a crack at the East’s second best team tonight. Detroit has two double digit losses to Boston this season, but the Celtics are playing with a banged up frontcourt with injuries to Shaquille O’Neal, Nenad Krstic and Jermaine O’Neal still recovering after a lengthy absence.

2. A peak at Troy Murphy

Former Net Troy Murphy was almost a Piston. Instead, he was eventually bought out of his contract and signed with the Celtics. He hasn’t helped much so far, playing only about 10 minutes a game, but his shooting percentages are creeping up from the terrible levels he was at in New Jersey. Playing a non-playoff team with a weak frontcourt like the Pistons could give Boston a chance to give Murphy an extended look, hoping he can find his 3-point shot and continue getting into game shape before the playoffs start.

3. All eyes on the court

Friday’s Dennis Rodman festivities provided a nice reprieve from the on-court struggles of the Pistons. Now, the focus shifts right back to how poorly the team has played. The Pistons have played poorly against the Celtics, poorly against good teams and poorly on the road this season. The players and coaches would undoubtedly like to close the season strong, so going into Boston against a team that isn’t completely healthy and could be thinking ahead to the playoffs should give the Pistons a chance to play competitively. We’ll see if they take advantage.

Pregame Reading

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