Detroit has dropped five straight, the most since a six-game skid from Jan. 4 to Jan 12. The current streak has been equal parts heartbreak and blowout. The Pistons fell to the Heat by just three, and then lost to the Hawks in overtime. Those nail-biters, however, were bookended with a 20-point loss to the Thunder, and, most recently, a pair of 21-point defeats to Philadelphia and Milwaukee.
The streak has dropped the Pistons to 4-18, just a half-game ahead of Charlotte in the Eastern Conference cellar.
Second-year big man Greg Monroe continues to shine for Detroit. The 21-year-old is averaging 15.8 points and 9.5 boards, both team highs. Monroe has scored in double-figures in each of the last eight games and has four straight double-doubles.
Outside of him, though, it’s been a struggle. The Pistons’ second-leading scorer, Ben Gordon, has missed the last six games and is not with the team on its current three-game road trip. Rookie Brandon Knight has shown flashes of both brilliance and youth: After scoring 17 and 20 in back-to-back games last week, he tallied nine and 0 in the last two.
New York is having its own problems. The Knicks have lost three in a row and nine of 10. Carmelo Anthony is reportedly doubtful with a bum ankle.