Inside Look: Motor City visits Bluff City

On Wednesday, the Detroit pistons (16-19) come to town with a dynamic frontcourt presence of Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond, who will present an issue to the foul prone Grizzly rookie Jaren Jackson Jr.

To help us get an insider’s perspective on the matchup, I reached out to @TravisGibbs75 of @PistonPowered to help answer this week’s burning questions.

Like the Grizzlies, the Pistons are sitting right around that .500 mark and in fringe playoff position. That being said, what areas do the Pistons excel in that might push them into the top 8 in the East?

The Detroit Pistons probably have the best front court duo in the eastern conference between Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond. Those two will be the reason they either make the playoffs or not this season. The team excels when these two excel.

Who do you think the winner was in last year’s Clippers/Pistons trade involving mainly Blake Griffin and Tobias Harris? Also, do you think Blake will be a franchise cornerstone or will Detroit need to retool in a few years?

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Detroit’s record may not show that they are the winners of the trade, but they got the better player by far. Blake is having a career year in terms of points per game (24.8) and has evolved his game by expanding his range and ball-handling ability. It’s hard to say whether or not he will be a franchise cornerstone. I believe he will be in Detroit for the extent of his deal because it’s hard to move a contract like that.

How is our boy, former Memphis Grizzly, Jon Leuer doing?

Leuer hasn’t been able to find a role with the team this season. It wasn’t until the start of December when he started finally seeing the floor. With Zaza Pachulia out last night as the back-up center, Leuer logged some minutes against Milwaukee and ended up getting dunked on by Giannis Antetokounmpo. I think he’s a much better offensive option for the second unit but Casey prefers Pachulia’s grittiness.

What rotational players have separated themselves and made an impact on the Pistons?

No one has really been able to separate themselves that much. Langston Galloway and Luke Kennard have been inconsistent shooting the basketball this season. Stanley Johnson had a great stretch of games after getting moved to the bench and has slowly fizzled out. Ish Smith is out with an injury.

What will be a few keys to the game when Memphis and Detroit square up against each other?

The biggest key for Detroit will be the supporting cast. That’s been one of their deciding factors on whether or not they win games. They need to get production from people not named Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond. Dwane Casey hasn’t been able to get that from anyone.


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Feature Image: [The Big Lead]

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