You thought the Pistons missed the playoffs? Not at PistonPowered.
We’re honoring the 10th anniversary of the 2004 NBA championship team by examining each postseason game on the corresponding 2014 date. We’ll look back at Detroit’s performances, detail our memories of that time and provide insight from the players and coaches who were Goin’ to Work every single night.
So, stick with us this “offseason.” I have a hunch these Pistons will be playing into June.
|Chauncey Billups, PG 40 MIN | 9-16 FG | 7-7 FT | 4 REB | 13 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 28 PTSBillups and Hamilton together scored 56 of Detroit’s 90 points when at least one was on the floor and assisted on another 25 of them (besides the 16 points worth of assists to each other). When both sat, the Nets outscored the Pistons 11-5.|
|Richard Hamilton, SG 37 MIN | 9-17 FG | 10-11 FT | 4 REB | 5 AST | 4 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 28 PTSHamilton and Billups were completely in sync in this game. They’re outscored the Nets’ backcourt 56-14 while hitting 18-33 compared to 5-22.|| |
|Tayshaun Prince, SF 35 MIN | 0-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 2 PTSPrince finally had a bad playoff game. Fortunately, it happened when the backcourt had the game locked up.|| |
|Rasheed Wallace, PF 40 MIN | 6-14 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 0 TO | 15 PTSLast postseason, Kenyon Martin averaged 19 points, 9 boards, 3 dimes, 2 blocks, and 2 steals against Detroit. If Rasheed can hold his own against Martin, that bodes well for Detroit’s hopes to win this series.|| |
|Ben Wallace, C 38 MIN | 4-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 11 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 4 BLK | 2 TO | 8 PTSWith Ben out of the game, the Nets were on pace to score 99 points. That number dropped to 75 points when he did play.|
|Corliss Williamson, PF 14 MIN | 5-8 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 11 PTSWilliamson shot well. He coughed it up too much, but at least they were all dead ball turnovers.|| |
|Lindsey Hunter, PG 13 MIN | 0-2 FG | 1-2 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 1 PTSHunter immediately put Kerry Kittles on the line upon checking in. And Lucious Harris was 2-3 while covered by Hunter. Poor game on both ends.|
|Mehmet Okur, C 6 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTSMemo barely played but he was solid in his couple minutes.|
|Mike James, PG 6 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTSJames held up defensively.|
|Elden Campbell, C 5 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTSNew Jersey’s front court shot 3-3 with Campbell in the game. That’s probably why he didn’t play in the second half.|
|Darvin Ham, SF 6 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTSHam had his normal impact on the box score.|
|Darko Milicic, C 1 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTSSo far, Milicic over Carmelo Anthony is looking like a pretty major draft blunder.|
|Larry Brown, Head Coach |
Another good game. Brown and the Pistons held serve at home and are now ready to try to take a big series lead.
From the frontlines
After getting swept by the Nets last season, the Pistons certainly didn’t expect to cruise in the rematch.
But 22- and 15-point wins have a way of altering the outlook.
At that point, did Chauncey Billups think it was going to be easier to beat New Jersey than he expected?
“I thought it was,” Billups said. “I thought it was going to be a five-game series for us. We’d go there and maybe win one then close it out at home. That’s what I thought after winning the first two.”
This just seems a little too easy, doesn’t it?
I mean, essentially this same New Jersey team dominated the Pistons last season, sweeping them from the playoffs. But now, thanks to an enormous second-half surge, the Pistons stand just two wins from their second straight Eastern Conference finals.
Detroit out-scored the Nets 61-34 in the second half, and after a suffocating defensive performance in Game 1, followed it up with a mediocre (by comparison) showing in Game 2.
The Pistons’ offense wasn’t necessarily great in either win thus far, but the fact that the defense was so otherworldly made up for it. Can they really sustain this elite defense in Game 3 in New Jersey on May 9?