We have our first nominee for worst game of the 2012-13 season.
The now 2-9 Pistons blew out the Celtics in Detroit. They were too long and aggressive for a Celtics team that played at home yesterday afternoon and may have been struggling with dead legs. That’s not to make excuses for the team, which turned in one of those classic apathetic performances that we’ve seen a few times each of the last few seasons.
The defense again surrendered 100+ points. The Pistons shot 54% from the field, racked up 23 assists and scored 44 points in the paint. Little big man Jason Maxiell went for 15 and 6 against the Celtics and big big man Greg Monroe had a dominant game with 20 points and 13 rebounds.
The Pistons did a great job forcing the Celtics into jumpshots and bothering interior shots with their length. Boston’s paltry 12 assists pay tribute to the lack of fluidity in the offense tonight, but, again, this looked like a team that just didn’t have the energy to meet a hungry Detroit team. On many nights, those jumpers go down.
Jared Sullinger did put in a few late baskets to finish with a team-leading 16 points and help Rajon Rondo extend his consecutive 10+ assist streak to 34 games. Rondo would have had it much earlier had a few shots fallen.
Last note before we put this one in the rearview mirror: Paul Pierce left the court in the fourth quarter with what appeared to be a relatively minor ankle sprain.