Pistons look for redemption in rematch with Pacers

Essentials

  • Teams: Indiana Pacers at Detroit Pistons
  • Date: Dec. 31,  2011
  • Time: 6 p.m.
  • Television: Fox Sports Detroit Plus, NBA League Pass

Records

  • Pistons: 0-3
  • Pacers: 3-0

Probable starters

Pistons:

Pacers:

  • Darren Collison
  • Paul George
  • Danny Granger
  • David West
  • Roy Hibbert

Las Vegas projection

Spread: Pistons +4

Over/under: 186

Score: Pacers win, 95-91

Three things to watch

1. Greg Monroe

Monroe had his best offensive showing of the season against Boston. If the Pistons are going to avenge their season-opening blowout loss to Indiana, Monroe will have to have his best defensive performance against Indiana’s big, deep and talented frontcourt.

2. The undefeated Pacers

Indiana comes into this game 3-0 with a good chance at a 4-0 start. Much has been made of Detroit’s tough schedule to start the season (see below). I know Indiana has improved from last season, but four games to start the season against Detroit (twice), Toronto and Cleveland doesn’t exactly tell us much about the Pacers yet.

3. 0-10 watch

After an 0-3 start, the Pistons next seven games are:

  • vs. Pacers
  • vs. Magic
  • vs. Bulls
  • at 76ers
  • vs. Knicks
  • at Bulls
  • vs. Maviercks

Tonight starts a three-game homestand for the Pistons. Although all three opponents — Indiana, Orlando and Chicago — are tough, this stretch probably represents their best chance to avoid a catastrophically bad start. Indiana has played a weak schedule and Orlando and Chicago will be on the second night of a back-to-backs.

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