Jazz turn up second half defense, Pistons blow 15-point lead in loss

Utah Jazz90Final

Recap | Box Score87Detroit Pistons

Jason Maxiell, PF 26 MIN | 2-5 FG | 3-4 FT | 6 REB | 3 AST | 7 PTS | +10Maxiell was pretty average, although he did block three shots in 26 minutes. The team had several defensive problems up front. Although Maxiell didn’t play great defensively, he was far from the main culprit.
Tayshaun Prince, SF 33 MIN | 3-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 3 AST | 8 PTS | +1Like Maxiell, Prince was pretty painfully average tonight. He didn’t have an awful game, but he missed a couple of short jumpers in the second half that he typically makes.
Kyle Singler, SF 20 MIN | 2-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 4 PTS | +2At the risk of being repetitive, Singler was also about as average as it gets tonight. His defense wasn’t great, wasn’t awful. Offensively, he wasn’t much of a factor, although he did make both of this shot attempts.
Greg Monroe, C 32 MIN | 6-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 11 REB | 3 AST | 12 PTS | 0Monroe did some things OK — he shot well, he rebounded, he got on the offensive glass. And although Al Jefferson, in particular, bullied anyone Detroit put on him, Monroe at the very least tried to be physical defensively. But his seven turnovers were killers. I don’t blame him for all of them — in the third quarter, Utah just collapsed basically all of their defenders on Monroe every time he touched the ball inside because they weren’t scared of the perimeter shooters Detroit had on the floor. Monroe made a few sloppy passes, but I would say three or four of those turnovers weren’t his fault.
Brandon Knight, PG 35 MIN | 7-16 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 16 PTS | -1Knight only had one assist, but he also only had two turnovers. He missed a couple of open 3-pointers, but tonight, he was the best of a very mediocre starting lineup. I would’ve given Knight a B if he didn’t take one of the stupidest shots of the season so far, launching a 3-pointer from like five feet behind the 3-point line with nine seconds still remaining on the shot clock in the third quarter.
Charlie Villanueva, PF 16 MIN | 1-5 FG | 1-3 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 4 PTS | -11Villanueva didn’t shoot well and, unlike in most of the other games he’s played since re-entering the rotation, he didn’t do much else to help the team when he was on the court.
Austin Daye, PF 15 MIN | 1-3 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 5 PTS | -4Daye also didn’t shoot particularly well, but he did block two shots. His length makes him a very interesting player off the bench when he’s confident — he can’t guard perimeter players regularly, but those long arms allow him to block shots and recover even on the times he gets beat off the dribble.
Andre Drummond, C 21 MIN | 4-5 FG | 1-4 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 9 PTS | -5This was Drummond’s worst game in quite some time. He still contributed — including a great leaping steal while back-pedaling that I’m still not sure how he caught, followed by a dive to the floor and a timeout call to save the possession for the Pistons — but when Jefferson started abusing the Pistons inside in the second half, not even Drummond could, the team’s best interior defender, could do much to slow him down.
Will Bynum, PG 19 MIN | 6-6 FG | 1-2 FT | 0 REB | 4 AST | 13 PTS | 0With the Pistons down by nine, Bynum scored six points in the final two minutes to, once again, propel the Pistons back into a game that looked to be over. I was more impressed by Bynum’s three steals and zero turnovers, however.
Rodney Stuckey, PG 22 MIN | 2-6 FG | 3-4 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 9 PTS | -7File Stuckey among the ‘painfully average’ group listed above in the starting lineup. He didn’t do anything — other than a really awkward looking turnaround jumper attempt where he had a man in his face and didn’t even look like he could see the rim when he turned — that qualifies as awful, but he didn’t really do much positive in this game either.
Lawrence FrankThe Pistons looked great early, but with the offense sputtering after Utah got way more aggressive on defense in the third quarter, Frank was late to go back to his bench. The Jazz were trapping Monroe, and I thought if Frank had put Villanueva or Daye (or both) into the game, it may have stopped Utah from being able to send so many defenders at Monroe. The fact that several of his players were kind of no-shows tonight didn’t really help matters either though.