Pistons at Jazz: the Tank Bowl

Essentials

  • Teams: Detroit Pistons (25-44) at Utah Jazz (23-47)
  • Date: March 24, 2014
  • Time: 9:00 p.m.
  • Television: FSD

What to look for

The Detroit Pistons have failed so far this season. The only way they can remedy this, is by continuing to drop in the standings.

It appears as though Detroit will miss the playoffs, and they will head into the offseason with more questions than answers. If they get a top pick in the draft, they could contemplate trading it for an above-average player provided that there is a market for such a deal.

However, the front office hardly inspires confidence in terms of building an adequate roster, which makes it far more likely for the Pistons to keep the pick. Before the NBA draft arrives, the Pistons must deal with this formality called “the regular season”.

It’s in Detroit’s best interests to lose, but athletes are hardly conditioned as such.

What’s more, going into Salt Lake City for a bout with the Utah Jazz is a rather odd proposition. Utah has historically been a difficult opponent at home, but they too are in the same boat as Detroit. Interestingly enough, the Jazz embraced the tanking idea fairly early on in 2013-14, while the Pistons recently joined the party.

Neither team will be confused with the Philadelphia 76ers (losers of 24 straight contests heading into tonight’s match with the San Antonio Spurs), but they still operate within the lower depths of their respective conferences.

Detroit has lost five straight games, and eight of their last 10. On the flip side, Utah recently ended a six-game losing streak, and owns the same record as tonight’s opponent over the last 10 contests.

Someone has to win tonight’s game, but I’m just not sure which team that will be, and what the added value of a victory will be.

That’s what tanking will do for you…

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