Brooklyn is favored by 7 points over the Pistons at home.
Both teams come into this one looking to break a stigma of negativity and poor play. It has been a tough season for both squads who currently have a combined record of 36-57. The Nets and the Pistons are both coming off bad losses to divisional rivals, so this could be a good bounce-back game for either team.
Detroit is once again having a mediocre season. They made the playoffs last season, but they did so as the eighth seed and with a record of 41-41, finishing just behind the Nets. In fact, Detroit has made the playoffs only twice since 2009-2010, and they have only finished the year with a winning record once during that time. Over the least ten years, the Pistons have had six different people coach the team. The Pistons continue to be a role model of inconsistency, and this season is no different. In Dwayne Casey’s second year with the team, Detroit currently sits ahead of only eight teams in the NBA standings. There is still hope for this season though, as the Pistons are only 3.5 games back from the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference playoff picture. This season is not a lost cause, but it could be going much better.
As for the Nets, their downward spiral continues. On the downside, Brooklyn has only one win in their last seven games. The single bright spot about that stretch is the fact that their lone win came against the Pistons just four days ago, so the Nets could certainly be on the end of another win tonight, which would be their 20th of the year. It was in that game that Kyrie Irving scored a season high 45 points. Brooklyn finished that one on a 15-5 run in overtime which led to the 121-111 win.
The Nets are expected to have Kyrie Irving back in this one. He sat out the last game the Nets played, which ended up being a 110-97 loss against the Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Kyrie missed that game because he was mourning the passing of his friend Kobe Bryant and Gigi. I expect Kyrie to be electric in this game though. As I mentioned before, he had a season high in points the last time Brooklyn faced off against Detroit. The first time these teams played, the Pistons ended up winning that game at home 113-109, but that game was all the way back in November, and these squads have both changed a lot since that time.
This is going to be a big game for Kyrie. He is going to want to go out there and make Kobe Bryant proud as so many NBA players have done over the last few days. On top of that, Tony Snell will miss this game due to injury, and Andre Drummond is questionable to play due to a sprain in his left wrist. With a somewhat hobbled Drummond, the Pistons could be in for a rough outing. Detroit is an unimpressive 15-29 this season when Andre Drummond plays. If he is not at his best, then I expect this to be a long night for Detroit. Factor in a highly motivated Kyrie Irving, who wants to put on a show for the world after the passing of his dear friend Kobe Bryant, and I think this is a perfect storm for a Nets victory. I like Brooklyn to win and cover the 7 point spread which will give the Nets their second victory over the Pistons in their last three games.