Detroit Pistons vs. Golden State Warriors 2019-20 season preview

Detroit Pistons Blake Griffin. (Photo by Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images)
Detroit Pistons Blake Griffin. (Photo by Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Detroit Pistons
Detroit Pistons Blake Griffin. (Photo by Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Detroit Pistons have been able to hold their own against the Golden State Warriors over the last few seasons. Here’s how things match up this season.

Last season, the Detroit Pistons were looking to return to the playoffs for the first time since 2016. Meanwhile, the Golden State Warriors were gearing up for a fifth straight Finals appearance and a third consecutive championship after their high-profile signing of DeMarcus Cousins.

While the Warriors ultimately fell short in their three-peat pursuit after falling to the Toronto Raptors in six games in the NBA Finals, the Pistons did return to the playoffs as the eight seed in the Eastern Conference but were quickly swept by the Milwaukee Bucks.

For the Warriors, untimely injuries to stars Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson meant that five straight Finals appearances would have to count as meeting expectations. While the Pistons at times showed glimpses of potential for securing a higher seed, the eighth seed (clinched on the final game of the year) was enough to satisfy the win-now factions of the franchise’s fan base.

The history between the two franchises is relatively banal. The meteoric rise of the Warriors coinciding with one of the Pistons’ most unsuccessful decades ever has meant little in the way of competition. However, the Warriors’ one visit to Detroit per year gives fans a chance to see Saginaw-native Draymond Green, and the chance to take on a dynasty is always motivating.

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In fact, the Pistons have had relative success against the Warriors, splitting the season series three out of the last four years, which includes an 18-point win over the Warriors in their record-setting 73-9 season in 2015-16.

Both teams have notably different rosters after this past offseason. While the Pistons added veteran presences in Derrick Rose and Markieff Morris and expanded depth at the wing position, the Warriors lost Kevin Durant in a trade with Brooklyn (which brought in guard D’Angelo Russell) and will be without Thompson who continues to recover from his Anterior Cruciate Ligament tear last season.

The Pistons have a lot of hope after a surprisingly eventful offseason given limited cap space. The Warriors have all eyes on them as they try to maintain their dominance.

What will these changes mean for their head-to-head match-ups this year?