Detroit Pistons-Celtics: Good, Bad and Ugly

Detroit Pistons forward Saddiq Bey (41) shoots against Boston Celtics forward Grant Williams (12) at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports
Detroit Pistons forward Saddiq Bey (41) shoots against Boston Celtics forward Grant Williams (12) at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports /

Led by rookie Saddiq Bey’s 30 points, the Detroit Pistons defeated the Boston Celtics, 108-102, at TD Garden for their second win of the season over Boston (really).

It is a crazy year for the NBA in general but the Detroit Pistons are crazy-plus. They only beat good teams.

Detroit is 7-19 on the season. All of its wins are against teams with legitimate chances to reach their respective conference finals.

The Pistons have now beaten the Celtics two out of three times this year (really).

Boston was without Kemba Walker but they had Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, so the Celtics had lots of firepower. The Pistons, after a lousy effort against Indiana on Thursday, got on a plane and had to play Boston the next day.

And Detroit was quite shorthanded. Mason Plumlee was out with bursitis in his elbow, fellow center Jahlil Okafor is out for a while with knee surgery and forward Sekou Doumbouya was out with a concussion.. That left rookie Isaiah Stewart as the Pistons only real center.

Here are the Good, the Bad and Ugly of the Detroit Pistons win

Detroit Pistons: The Good

Saddiq Bey: The Boston Celtics were looking for a wing who could shoot in this year’s NBA Draft. With the 14th pick, they selected Aaron Nesmith, instead of Saddiq Bey, who fell to the Pistons at 19. Not smart.

Bey might have remembered that slight, as he shot a career-high 30 points, going an NBA record for a rookie 7-for-7 on three-pointers.

It was not just that the Villanova product was hitting shots, Saddiq ‘Trey’ made them in the clutch. Here is the dagger that sealed the Celtics win:

Bey has looked good, and then not so good, so far in his rookie season. That is to be expected. We will see if this is a breakout game for him. He also chipped in with 12 rebounds, a needed contribution with the Pistons so shorthanded at center.

Delon Wright: He is growing into the starting point guard position. Wright had another good outing, scoring 22 points on 7 for 9 shooting, along with seven assists and six assists.

In crunch time, Wright ran the show superbly, not getting rattled by the tight Boston defense. Remember, he previously played for coach Dwane Casey in Toronto, so he knows the system better than most of the players.

Josh Jackson: The game started out awful for the Pistons, as the Celtics took a 12-2 lead. Jackson changed the game’s momentum when he entered the contest. By the end of the period, Detroit held a 27-23 lead.

Jackson finished with 14 points and five rebounds and played clutch defense on Jayson Tatum down the stretch.

Related Story. Has Josh Jackson finally turned the corner?. light

Detroit Pistons: The Bad

Celtics three-point shooting: Boston does not have a real inside game, but they usually make up that with great outside shooting. Not this time. Boston only made 8 of 27 three-pointers (29.6%) and never got it going offensively the whole game.

Detroit Pistons: The Ugly

Celtics mental preparation. Detroit had already beaten the Celtics once this year, and it took a buzzer-beater by Jayson Tatum not to lose to them again, so they should not have taken them lightly. Yet, after a fast start, the Pistons really controlled things most of the way.

C’mon Celtics, you are playing a team which has one center, who is a rookie, and at guard start 33-year-old Wayne Ellington and play Dennis Smith Jr. (!) for goodness sake. Detroit also had to hop on a plane after playing (badly) the night before.

If the Celtics want to do anything this season, you need to beat teams like Detroit, but they did not.

Analyzing Dennis Smith Jr.’s debut with Detroit Pistons. dark. Next

In his second game, Smith Jr. had five assists and two rebounds in 13 minutes of action.

Next up for the Pistons in a Sunday night home game with Zion Williamson,  Lonzo Ball and the New Orleans Pelicans.