Early tests, injuries in Pistons vs. Thunder: How to watch

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander #2 of the Oklahoma City Thunder dribbles the ball against Killian Hayes #7 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander #2 of the Oklahoma City Thunder dribbles the ball against Killian Hayes #7 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Pistons will head to Oklahoma City tonight to take on the Thunder in a game between two of the up and coming young teams in the NBA.

The Thunder got where the Pistons wanted to be last season, so they are a good measure of where this team is early in the season.

Don’t look now, but Detroit has a winning record after three games. Some of the more miserable in the fanbase were quick to point out that the two wins came against the Hornets and Bulls, who both stink (they do) but the first step to becoming a good team is regularly beating the bad ones.

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OKC is not a bad team, so this will be a great test for the Pistons, who are playing with renewed confidence under Monty Williams.

Both teams will be shorthanded, but the Detroit Pistons should have the advantage when it comes to quality depth.

Pistons vs. Thunder: Injury updates

According to the official NBA injury report, the Pistons will still be missing Isaiah Livers, Bojan Bogdanovic and Monte Morris, all of whom are expected to be out for several more weeks. James Wiseman is listed as “probable” with a sprained digit, which is odd considering he’s yet to play this season.

Kenrich Williams and Jaylin Williams will be out for the Thunder, though they still haven’t submitted their official report, so check back closer to game time.

How to watch Pistons vs. Thunder

Tonight’s game in OKC will tip off at 8:00 PM ET and you can watch on BSDET EXTRA or listen on ALT 98.7 FM. As always, if you have the NBA League Pass and live out of market, you can stream it there, otherwise you can try a free trial at FUBOtv.

Early tests for the Pistons against Thunder

Can the Pistons contain Shai Gilgeous-Alexander?

Detroit’s overall defense against the Bulls was great, but they did let Zach LaVine go off for 51 points. He was getting wherever he wanted in the mid-range, shooting over screens that Detroit kept going under and generally making it look pretty easy. SGA can also carve up a defense, so it will be interesting to see if Monty Williams goes with Ausar Thompson early, as he shut LaVine down late in the game after he was finally switched onto him.

Can the Pistons out-muscle OKC?

Detroit has been playing physical basketball on the defensive end, dominating the boards and getting a lot of points in the paint off putbacks and offensive rebounds. They will once again be the bigger, stronger team tonight, so they need to impose their will with Jalen Duren and Isaiah Stewart vs. Chet Holmgren and Jalen Williams. OKC is on the second game of a back-to-back, so Detroit needs to play physically, keep coming at them and hopefully wear them down as they did against the Bulls.

Can the Pistons’ bench continue to roll?

Alec Burks has been outstanding off the bench and both Jaden Ivey and Marvin Bagley III have provided big lifts as well. Even though Detroit is missing three players, they have more quality depth on the bench and this is an area where they should be able to gain some ground. This would be a great game for Jaden Ivey to go off and for Marvin Bagley III to have a monster game against OKC’s backup bigs.

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