There are five minutes left on the clock. After a pass from Killian Hayes, Isaiah Stewart scores under the circle and gives the Pistons their first advantage since the start of the game.
On his bench, JB Bickerstaff pouts, and feels that his team is losing ground. The Cavaliers suffer from the beautiful defense of Detroit and they no longer find easy positions in attack. The band of Dwayne Casey is drooling, and Cade Cunningham proves it by going to snatch an offensive rebound which he transforms into a 3-point basket (102-98). Unleashed, the first choice of the Draft gives a layer, and the Pistons sign a 20-2 to take off two minutes from the end (109-100).
The Little Caesar’s Arena is in fusion, and the young Pistons are crazy, and they will not let go to finally win 115-105. Killian Hayes can throw the ball into the stands at the buzzer, his Pistons have managed the perfect hold-up in front of a conquered audience.
WHAT YOU MUST REMEMBER
– A disastrous start. The Pistons still seemed to have their heads at their Sunday brunch, and they went through the opening minutes of the game like ghosts. Result: a 15-0 for Cleveland which unrolls its basketball. After four minutes, Dwane Casey had already used all of his time-outs from the first quarter…
– Frank Jackson, the spark. The former Pelicans fullback is known for being a streaky wisp, but he took full advantage of his playing time to revive his teammates in the first half. With 17 points (including 3/4 three-pointers), he put on the warm-up blue and set the tone for his team in attack. Playing fair, without forcing, very solid for a team often in dire need of a scorer.
– Last seven perfect minutes! The great defensive intensity of the Pistons paid off, and midway through the last quarter, the Pistons finally got ahead. A great offensive wave will follow: 26-7 in the last seven minutes. The Pistons collective has rarely been so well oiled this season!
✅ Saddiq Bey. The former Villanova is still as hard-hitting in attack, and demonstrated it once again tonight. Clean in his percentages (11/20 on shots, for 31 points), Saddiq Bey had very little waste in his game, with only one stray bullet. The perfect complement to Cade Cunningham.
✅⛔ Cade Cunningham. The number 1 of the 2021 Draft has harvested a lot (6/21 on shots!) But he still signs a triple-double (19 points, 10 assists, 10 rebounds), his second of the season. The rookie also planted two 3-point shots in “money time”, and showed an overflowing desire in defense, stealing two balls from Rajon Rondo, one of the veteran “pickpockets” of the league.
⛔Rajon Rondo. Called to lend a hand to Darius Garland, he was mediocre tonight in Michigan. He failed to guide the second unit, but also tried some unusual things during the “money time”, like these two 3-point shots while he had Cunningham on his back. Result: two large bricks.
Detroit (12-37) : still at Little Caesar’s Arena to face the Pelicans on Tuesday.
Riders (30-20) : return home with a back-to-back against these same Pelicans.