Detroit Sports

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Pistons Shaping Up

Could it be possible? Could the Pistons finally be emerging as the same team we saw cause the demolition of the Lakers as we knew them? Could it be simplifying the offense was all that was needed?

"I think it's made a big difference, we cleared out a lot of junk and made things clearer," Hamilton said Tuesday. "We're moving better, getting the ball moving, too. We're on the fast break, which works really good for us. This is what we're supposed to be doing."

I agree.

The Pistons came into the second half of their game against the Nets on Monday behind 10 points. They finished the regulation tied, and went on to win 100-90, fueled by a 13-3 overtime run.

What was the difference in the two halves? They played good ole fashion offensive basketball, while taking care of things on defense.

Rip Hamilton lead the charge with 37 points behind 12-19 shooting, and a couple three pointers. Prince backed him up with 18 points and 7-14 shooting.

So what really got into the Pistons? I don’t think there is one thing to talk about, or one moment, or one game. They did play a good Christmas game against Indiana. Detroit won the game, and looked pretty consistent over the course of the game.

I think what we’re witnessing is a team that is finally coming together, and learning how to shoot better, and transition better. They’re learning how to balance solid defense, and quality shooting.

Tonight the Pistons travel to Washington to face a 15-11 Wizards team. Lead by Gilbert Arenas, the Wizards have been playing well, but have not faired all that well against the better teams of the NBA. They’ve scoring 100 points per game, and giving up 99.

The Pistons could exploit this by sticking to the same play we’ve seen from them the last two games. Good transition, quality shooting, and good defense.

I look to Ben Wallace for the rebounding title. Rip Hamilton will need to take care of scoring. Chauncey’s best interest would be to keep the ball moving. Prince needs to play the perimeter on both ends of the court. Rasheed needs to be that second inside threat, with a viable mid-range shooting threat.

If the Pistons can continue to work on their game, and continue to grow their bench strength, we won’t need to wonder if they are going to beat a team like the Wizards.


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