The Detroit Pistons are once again hoping to have one of the top rookies in the league with 5th pick Jaden Ivey.
Cade Cunningham made first team All-Rookie last season, and both Saddiq Bey and Isaiah Stewart were on the All-Rookie team the year before, so Troy Weaver has drafted well so far in his tenure in the Pistons’ front office.
Jaden Ivey was one of the players the Detroit Pistons had at the top of the their big board and were somewhat surprised when he fell into their laps.
They see him as the perfect fit with Cade Cunningham and hope they have the backcourt that is going to lead them into a new era of sustained success.
Ivey hopes to show that he is the best player in his draft class, but to do that, he will have to shine in specific matchups with other top rookies. Here are some of the most important rookie tests he will face next season.
When does the Detroit Pistons’ regular season start?
Detroit starts their regular season on October 19th against the Orlando Magic, a game that will have some compelling subplots. The Magic feature #1 pick Paolo Banchero, and I am sure Ivey would love to get off to a hot start against the guy who went first in his draft.
But the two of them won’t be defending each other and people will probably spend more time comparing Cade to Paolo since they both went first in their respective drafts.
I’d say the same about Chet Holmgren and the Thunder, and Jabari Smith and the Rockets, as there will be other storylines that dominate the narratives for those games that likely won’t involve Jaden Ivey.
But there are five other teams where Ivey and his matchups will be the focus and give him a chance to show he deserves to be the Rookie of the Year.
Jaden Ivey’s biggest rookie battles
The Washington Wizards and Johnny Davis
- October 25th
- February 1st
- March 14th
The Pistons won’t have to wait long to face the Wizards, as the two teams play in the 4th game of the season.
This will put Jaden Ivey against Johnny Davis, a foe he is well familiar with since they both played in the Big 10 last season.
Davis got the better of Ivey, beating his Boiler Makers twice last season and putting up 37 points in one of the wins. I have a feeling both of these guys are going to enter next season with a chip on their shoulders, which should lead to a great early matchup of top guards from the draft.