The Pistons (2-3) head off to Orlando, Florida, to take on the Magic on Sunday in the Pistons final preseason road game of the year. This game will give us our first look at Rookie of the Year candidate Victor Oladipo. The Magic come into this contest with the Pistons with a preseason record of (1-4). Detroit, like Orlando, has struggled a bit throughout the start of the preseason, but look to get back on track against the Magic.
Detroit will also be reunited with veteran big man Jason Maxiell, who prior to the offseason played his entire career in the Motor City after being drafted out of Cincinnati.
The Orlando Magic, coming off a six point loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, will look to move past their contest versus the Grizzlies and try to put one more win in the W column against Detroit.
In the Magic’s previous contest against the Grizzlies, rookie guard Victor Oladipo put up a game high 22 points, while sophomore big man Kyle O’Quinn notched 12 points for Orlando in the loss. O’Quinn also produced 5 boards and 2 blocks off the pine for Orlando, giving some production while Nikola Vucevic sat on the bench for periods of time.
Orlando big man Nikola Vucevic also played extremely well in the loss to Memphis. Vucevic dropped 13 points, along with hauling down 11 boards, in just 26 minutes. Numbers are also impressive because of his opponent, Defensive Player of the Year Marc Gasol.
At the other end, the Pistons try to get back to their winning ways as they finish off their 4-game road trip. Coming off a loss to the Cavaliers in Cleveland on Thursday night, the Pistons try to get back to .500 before their two game home stand to end the preseason.
Other than Greg Monroe (16 points, 8 boards), nobody in Piston red, white, and blue, played well in Cleveland. Josh Smith had another sub par outing, only scoring 12 points and grabbing 4 rebounds during 32 minutes.
The Pistons are scheduled to tip-off against the Magic at 6:00 p.m. eastern time, in their preseason road finale. The Magic played a roster 11 men deep against the Grizzlies on Friday, expect the same from them on Sunday as well. With several key players resting up for the season, the Magic will throw-out a roster of mainly role players.
Chauncey Billups who played against the Cavaliers, may be in the lineup as well on Sunday, as no update on him has been given as of yet.
– Television: NONE
– Radio: WXYT 1270 AM (Detroit)
HC: Maurice Cheeks
PG: Peyton Siva
SG: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
SF: Josh Smith
PF: Greg Monroe:
C: Andre Drummond
HC: Jacque Vaughn
PG: Jameer Nelson
SG: Aaron Afflalo
SF: Mo Harkless
PF: Jason Maxiell
C: Nikola Vucevic
– Brandon Jennings: OUT (Jaw)
– Rodney Stuckey: OUT (Thumb)
– Luigi Datome: QUESTIONABLE (Hamstring)
– Chauncey Billups: PROBABLE (Rest)
– Will Bynum (Food Poisoning)
– Glen Davis: OUT (Left Foot)
– Doron Lamb: QUESTIONABLE (Right Ankle)
PREDICTION: 100-89 DETROIT
– With back-to-back bad losses against Central Division opponents, you have to believe Head Coach Maurice Cheeks will be on the Pistons to steal a game on the road before they head back to the Palace. I expect somewhat of a breakout outing from Josh Smith on Sunday, as he has yet to show Piston fans anything over the top this preseason. Other than some sub par outings, Smith will look to be aggressive against a younger player in Mo Harkless at small forward. Expect the Pistons to pull this one out against Orlando.
– Josh Smith Prediction: 16 points, 11 boards, 3 assists