Detroit Pistons: The Pistons’ best lineup will surprise you

Saddiq Bey #41 and Josh Jackson #20 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
Saddiq Bey #41 and Josh Jackson #20 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Pistons used a ton of different lineup combinations this season, which makes it tough to gauge what their best five-man unit might be.

They used seven different lineups that played at least 50 minutes together, though none of them got a lot of run as a group.

The Pistons’ most-used lineup of Blake Griffin, Wayne Ellington, Mason Plumlee, Jerami Grant and Delon Wright only played 178 minutes together, which is not much for a team’s starting five.

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To put it into perspective, the New Orleans Pelicans’ regular starting five played over 600 minutes as a unit, so the sample sizes for the Pistons are rather small.

That starting lineup had a -2.7 net rating, which means they allowed more points than they scored. Net rating is not a perfect statistic to measure team success but it will give fans some idea of how certain five-man groups played together.

Of the lineups that played at least 50 minutes together, the Pistons’ worst lineup was Ellington, Plumlee, Grant, Wright and Saddiq Bey, which had a -18.5 net rating after playing 88 minutes together, second-most on the team.

But which five players made up the Detroit Pistons’ best lineup?

Detroit Pistons: The Pistons’ best lineup

The Detroit Pistons’ best five man unit might surprise you, as it is made up of Plumlee, Grant, Wright, Bey and Josh Jackson.

This unit played 53 minutes together over 13 games and had a net rating of +16.3, which is pretty good.

There are a few things that are interesting about this lineup. The first is that it didn’t include Blake Griffin, which is not all that surprising considering he was awful for the Pistons.

The second is that this unit might be very close to next season’s starting five depending on what happens in the NBA Draft.

Wright is gone, but if you replace him with Killian Hayes, then you could have the Pistons’ opening night starting five with Killian, Jackson, Bey, Grant and Plumlee.

Hayes should be able to replicate Wright’s production while providing better defense, so it’s encouraging to know that the Pistons’ best lineup this season is one they can use in the future even more effectively.

Of course, if the Pistons end up taking a guard in the NBA Draft, then Jackson might come off the bench, but either way, the Pistons are set up to make a big leap next season and possibly even get into the playoffs.

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