Detroit Pistons: 3 takeaways from blowout win over Atlanta

Killian Hayes #7 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Killian Hayes #7 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Pistons, Killian Hayes
Killian Hayes #7 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

It has happened folks, the Detroit Pistons are no longer the worst team in the Eastern Conference.

Last night’s win over Atlanta, coupled with another Orlando loss has vaulted the Pistons past the Magic into the second-worst record in the East and the fourth-worst overall.

This drops their odds of getting a top-four pick in the NBA Draft slightly to 48.1 percent and their odds of getting the overall number one pick 12.5 percent.

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With the OKC Thunder tanking as badly as you’ll ever see a team tank (losers of 14 in a row) the Pistons are at real risk of dropping out of the top five, especially with Cleveland giving up as well.

We have to hope that the Lottery Gods favor the Pistons and their efforts, as Detroit has played hard all season, tried to win games and isn’t disgracing the league like some of these teams.

The Detroit Pistons put on one of their better defensive displays last night, holding the Hawks to 14.8 percent shooting from 3-point range and just 38 percent overall.

It’s hard to complain about winning when it is happening behind strong play from the youngsters, which will be the theme of today’s takeaways.

Detroit Pistons: Killian Hayes swiping steals

Killian Hayes has not shot the ball well this season, which is to be expected from a young point guard trying to get comfortable in the league.

His passing has been excellent and he has zip on his passes that you rarely see outside of LeBron James.

But what has been most impressive about Hayes is his defense. He again played smothering on-the-ball defense at times last night, playing like a veteran on that end.

Hayes is averaging 1.1 steals per game on the season but has been even better since his return from injury, swiping 1.6 per game in the last ten he’s played.

Killian’s offense is going to come with time, as he’s already shown some flashes of being able to get into the lane and knock down little floaters, but his defense is already here and this kid could eventually be elite on that end.