Friday, March 24, 2023
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NBA Preview: Portland Trail Blazers (30-34) at Detroit Pistons (15-49)

The Detroit Pistons begin a five-game homestand with a long losing streak.

Prior to their game against the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday night, the Detroit Pistons had lost seven straight.

On Saturday, Detroit was hammered by Cleveland by 114-90 and committed 24 turnovers. After falling nine points behind at the half, the Pistons were outscored 42-22 in the third quarter.

The fact that Casey’s starting five and rotation have been constantly changing due to injuries and roster additions and deletions has not helped matters.

Bojan Bogdanovic, the team’s leading scorer, missed Saturday because of a sore Achilles. Isaiah Stewart, power forward, and Jalen Duren, center, both missed time with injuries to their right hips, necessitating Casey’s creation of a brand-new frontcourt lineup. Watch Killian Hayes passed on the game in the second from last quarter because of a hand injury.

Marvin Bagley III, who led the Pistons with 20 points, 13 rebounds, and three blocks, was a bright spot. Since returning from a hand injury that kept him out for nearly two months, Bagley has been averaging 17.5 points and 13.0 rebounds in four games.

The Trail Blazers will play the third game of a six-game road trip and the tail end of a back-to-back. On Sunday, Portland defeated Orlando 122-119 to end a three-game losing streak.

Damian Lillard led the Trail Blazers with 41 points, his 14th game this season with 40 or more points. Over the past five games, he has scored 42.2 points on average.

In the final minute of the game against Orlando, Nassir Little hit the winning 3-pointer, and the Trail Blazers won the game with free throws.

Jerami Grant, a former Piston, scored 20, grabbed six rebounds, and provided seven assists. On Jan. 2, the Trail Blazers defeated the Pistons 135-106, and Grant scored 36 points in 28 minutes.

Portland played without starters Jusuf Nurkic (left calf strain) and Anfernee Simons (right lower leg sprain) on Sunday.

Billups will coach on Monday against the team he led to the 2004 and 2005 NBA Finals.

5-Hour Energy

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