The Pistons won 27 games a season ago (24th in the league) with a new head coach and a slew of injuries. The team has already lost one of their best players, Jonas Jerebko, for most, if not all, of the new season, but overall the team is much healthier and ready to prove the doubters wrong.â†µ
That's not stopping the so called "experts" from projecting the Pistons to fall even further in 2010-2011. Marc Stein puts out the weekly NBA power rankings for ESPN.com and has Detroit ranked dead last heading into this week's opening games. Here's the coinciding blurb:â†µ
Jonas Jerebko went down early. T-Mac's comeback hasn't even started yet. And the sale of the team is still pending. Add it all up and October ranks as another month that was far too Lions-like for the formerly mighty Pistons.â†µ
The Pistons probably won't be a playoff team (and not one ESPN "expert" is picking the Pistons to be), but to even suggest they're going to slump to the cellar of the NBA is nuts. Even before a game has been played, this team isn't the worst in the NBA. I don't see the real logic in that.â†µ
On the outside, these "experts" see one of the 27-win team's best players go down early and automatically conclude they'll be worse as a result. Seems easy enough to deduct, right? What they don't understand is the other variables at play. The Pistons are a relatively young team with another year of experience, John Kuester has a year under his belt, the rest of the team is much healthier and a non-factor last year, Austin Daye, looks like he's going to be a huge impact. As great, and a surprise, as Jerebko was last year, the other factors probably tip the scales in the other direction. At worst, this team could meet last year's disappointment, but that won't put them at the bare bottom.