Detroit Pistons: 10 potential rivalry games to circle on the calendar
February 4 vs. Orlando Magic
This mini-rivalry started to kick off over the last few seasons, as both teams have been battling each other for the bottom of the conference. It got a heated last year with a little dust-up near the Pistons’ bench that resulted in some WWE-style punches being delivered (they were about as real). Whatever you think about Killian Hayes’ alleged knockout, these are two teams on the rise at the same time and they don’t like each other, which should make for some good games.
March 11 vs. Charlotte Hornets
The two worst teams in the East last season will both look to climb out of the cellar behind their young cores. I put this late matchup in here because hopefully both teams will be fighting for the play-in and there will be something at stake. High-stakes games are what build rivalries, so even though Detroit vs. Charlotte will not be considered a marquee matchup, it could be meaningful for their young rosters. This has the potential to be the start of a future rivalry if the teams are near one another in the standings.
April 4 vs Chicago Bulls
Detroit Pistons vs. Chicago Bulls is arguably the 2nd greatest rivalry in NBA history behind the Lakers vs. Celtics. The beef between Isiah Thomas and Michael Jordan continues to this day. But it’s been a bloodbath for Detroit over the last four years, as they have failed to beat the Bulls in 15 games, their longest streak of futility. This has to change if the Pistons ever want to emerge in the Central. It’s hard to see the Bulls being better next season, as they didn’t make any impact additions, so this could be the year when the Pistons finally overtake them in the standings and hopefully leave them in the rearview mirror.