The Detroit Pistons problem is not just a lack of talent

Charlotte Hornets v Detroit Pistons
Charlotte Hornets v Detroit Pistons / Nic Antaya/GettyImages

The Detroit Pistons are in familiar territory with 10 games left in the 2023-23 season. They are 12-60, going through the motions with a dysfunctional and injured roster.

There is plenty of blame to go around, from the GM and front office that built an uncompetitive roster, to a lackluster coaching performance from Monty Williams, to a lack of individual improvement in certain areas from key players.

But one of the biggest problems not being discussed is injuries, as the Pistons are once again limping into the home stretch with half of their roster on the injured list.

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Over the last few seasons, we've seen some dubious injuries that were definitely tank related, as the Pistons were sopping up losses to maximize their draft odds.

But they aren't supposed to be tanking this year (they are just bad) and have still piled up the injuries, which has to be a concern.

Detroit Pistons injuries: No Iron Men here

For the second straight season, the Pistons will finish with (at most) two players who play at least 70 games. Jaden Ivey has played 68 games already and will likely hit that mark, and Marcus Sasser has played 63, so needs to play in just seven of the final 10 games.

No one else is even eligible, as Cade Cunningham has only played 59 games, Jalen Duren 54, and both Ausar Thompson and Isaiah Stewart have been ruled out for the season after playing 63 and 46 games, respectively.

Last season was the same, as the Pistons were led in games played by Killian Hayes with 76 and Jaden Ivey with 74. Cunningham played 12 games, Duren 67 and Isaiah Stewart just 50.

That's a lot of games missed by the guys who are supposed to be the foundation of your team. The Pistons were well out of it before this slew of injuries set in, so it's not like injuries caused their 12-60 record, but they haven't helped and the Pistons have to be concerned that they can't count on 70 games from any of their key guys other than Ivey.

The Detroit Pistons have to get more games from their best players or else we get what we've seen for the past two games, which is a roster that barely resembles an NBA team.

Injuries happen, so there is no easy answer. There is also no reason to push guys to play meaningless games. But these injuries are costing young players valuable developmental minutes and putting an unwatchable product on the floor for fans.