3 things we may have underestimated about the Detroit Pistons
Isaiah Stewart’s overall impact
We spent most of the offseason debating whether Beef Stew could shoot well enough to be a starting power forward while ignoring all of the other things he brings to the table.
I’ve been a stauch Stewart supporter from the beginning. He is the type of player you need to change a culture, as he hustles, brings energy every night and is a great communicator on the defensive end. I feel somewhat vindicated after just two games, as Stewart has arguably been the most important player in both of them.
He’s not just bringing it on the defensive end, though he had plenty of great plays there last night, especially in the 4th quarter when he willed the Pistons to victory:
Stewart made two huge 3-point shots in the 4th quarter to help stave off the Hornets, and when the shot wasn’t there, he took it to the rim for a layup. He got into Charlotte’s heads, made them lose composure and put the team on his wide shoulders down the stretch.
The shooting has been fine, and to be honest, it’s not a big concern if he is going to play defense like this and make big plays when the team needs him.
This isn’t Isaiah Stewart’s team (that’s for Cade) but he is its heart and the other guys feed off his energy and listen to him when he talks.
It’s just one game, and the Pistons could very well come out tonight and stink against the Bulls, but the coaching is getting through, their bigs are producing and this team has a vibe around it unlike anything I’ve felt in four years. Now they just need to show they can bring that same level of intensity night after night.