Preview: Pistons visit Orlando Magic
The Detroit Pistons look to get back on track in their quest to end a four-year playoff drought when they visit the Orlando Magic on Wednesday.
The Pistons have dropped five of their last seven games to fall into ninth in the Eastern Conference after a valiant effort ended with a 102-96 loss at Miami on Monday. The Magic have lost five of their last six overall but own three wins in four games at home over the Pistons, including a 109-92 triumph on Dec. 27.
The Pistons have a slightly better record on the road (10-13) than at home (9-15), but have dropped three straight away from Detroit. Orlando center Nikola Vucevic was in the lineup as the Magic outrebounded Detroit in their win after Christmas and he was not available Jan. 28 when the Pistons had a 56-40 edge on the boards in a 16-point home victory. Orlando is 0-26 this season when it gets outrebounded.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, FSN Detroit, FSN Florida (Orlando)
ABOUT THE PISTONS (19-28): Brandon Jennings is averaging 25 points over his last six outings after being shut out against the Los Angeles Clippers, including 20 to go along with eight assists in the 103-87 victory over Orlando. Josh Smith (15.4), Rodney Stuckey (14) and Greg Monroe (14.4) have also contributed big numbers on the offensive end as Detroit averages 99.9 per game. Andre Drummond averages 12.7 rebounds, ranking third best in the league overall and first on the offensive glass at 5.2
ABOUT THE MAGIC (13-37): Orlando starts a four-game homestand which includes games against the two conference leaders (Indiana, Oklahoma City) and one of the hottest teams in the league (Memphis). Vucevic is averaging 14.5 points and 10 rebounds in four games since returning from a concussion and totals 19 double-doubles in 32 outings this season. Arron Afflalo averages 20 points and 42.4 percent shooting from 3-point range to lead the team and is 15-of-23 from the field against Detroit in 2013-14.
1. Drummond is second in the league in double-doubles with 35 – two shy of the most by a Piston since 2003-2004 (Monroe last season).
2. Orlando rookie G Victor Oladipo recorded 16 assists combined in the last two games while taking over the point for injured G Jameer Nelson (sore left knee).
3. Detroit was tied for sixth through Monday in rebounding margin (plus-2.8) and is Orlando tied for 25th at minus-3.2.