The Pistons are getting some love from the national media, and many think they are on the verge of finally climbing out of the cellar and contending in the Eastern Conference again.
But it’s not going to be easy, as there are some strong teams at the top of the East, and most of the teams at the bottom got better this offseason too.
So how high can the Detroit Pistons climb in the Eastern Conference?
Detroit Pistons: The contenders of the Eastern Conference
There are four teams in the East that are almost certain to be in the mix for top seeds next season unless they suffer major injuries:
- Boston Celtics: Made it to the Finals last season and will be looking to get back behind superstar Jayson Tatum. The addition of Malcolm Brogdon will help.
- Philadelphia 76ers: As long as MVP-candidate Joel Embiid is healthy, the 76ers will be contenders, especially if James Harden actually tries.
- Milwaukee Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo would make any team a contender, but can they stay healthy enough around him? Either way, they’ll be near the top as long as Giannis is there and in his prime.
- Miami Heat: Could the Heat drop off next season? Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry aren’t going to last forever, but they might still have a big move up their sleeve.
The Wildcards of the East
There are two teams that could make a jump in the standings, but it’s hard to say how their offseasons will affect their place in the standings:
- Brooklyn Nets: Will they trade Kevin Durant? If not, they will be hunting a top seed, but if they do, the Nets could drop into the cellar and have to rebuild.
- Atlanta Hawks: Will the addition of Dejounte Murray be enough to push them up in the standings? I do question how well he will fit with Trae Young and there could be some growing pains, but the Hawks should be in the mix for a playoff spot.