This problem is costing Cade Cunningham and the Detroit Pistons

Cade Cunningham #2 of the Detroit Pistons walks to the locker room after receiving his second technical foul of the game (Photo by Mike Mulholland/Getty Images)
Cade Cunningham #2 of the Detroit Pistons walks to the locker room after receiving his second technical foul of the game (Photo by Mike Mulholland/Getty Images) /

Cade Cunningham has flashed signs of superstardom this season for the Detroit Pistons, but he has also had a recurring problem.

It popped up again last night, as Cade picked up two quick fouls and had to be sent to the bench in favor of Killian Hayes.

It happened the game before against Boston as well, as Cunningham was rolling and looked like he was on his way to a career high before having to hit the bench with foul trouble.

Firstly, I have to say that I don’t think I’ve ever seen a player get fewer calls than Cade Cunningham. I don’t know if it’s because he’s barking at the refs too much and has gotten a reputation, or if he is just a rookie trying to earn respect, but Cade doesn’t get a lot of calls on either end.

Related Story. Cade Cunningham's Rookie of the Year watch. light

However, he also makes some really foolish fouls, reaches in too much and is sometimes over-aggressive trying to block shots.

Cunningham has had 10 games with four fouls, six games with five fouls and has fouled out three times this season. If you are counting, that is 21 games in which Cade Cunningham has been in foul trouble, which is costing him in a couple of ways.

Cade Cunningham can’t contribute if he’s not on the floor for the Detroit Pistons

When Cade has to hit the bench for the Detroit Pistons, the offense suffers and so do his overall numbers. The other day against Boston was a perfect example, as Cade scored 25 points in just 27 minutes and might have dropped 40 if he had not had to spend a lot of the second half on the bench.

Cade was able to rack up 19 points last night, most of them coming later in the game after he had to sit for much of the first half and 3rd quarter with foul trouble. These missed minutes add up and will negatively affect Cunningham’s chances of winning Rookie of the Year.

Foul trouble changes Cade Cunningham’s game

Last night we saw Cunningham have to play less aggressively on both ends in the second half, which is what happens when you are in foul trouble.

Cade is at his best when he is bullying defenders in the paint, using his body to stay in front of guys and going aggressively after blocks and steals, things he cannot do if he is teetering on the brink of fouling out of the game.

Cade is a high-IQ player, but he has to stop picking up fouls that don’t make any sense, particularly the reach-ins on the opposite end of the court, something he has done several times over the last two games.

This is a work in progress, as Cade is probably used to getting the benefit of the doubt on a lot of these types of plays, a luxury he is not getting so far in the NBA.

He’ll eventually start getting the star treatment, but until then, Cade needs to reduce the stupid fouls so that he can stay in the game and stay aggressive.

Next. Cade Cunningham is climbing the Pistons' all-time rookie list. dark