New York Knicks vs Detroit Pistons

 

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The Detroit Pistons host the New York Knicks at Lil Ceaser’s Arena in Detroit, Michigan, Sunday night at 8 pm EST. The Knicks are currently favored by a point, down from 1.5-points, while the total stands at 215-points.

The Knicks won their 2nd-straight contest (6th in 8 games) after taking out the Indiana Pacers Saturday night as they were able to shake off a dismal 1st period to outscore the Pacers 87-75 the remainder of the way to pick up their 16th win of the year. And while the defense for New York allowed Indiana to shoot a decent 45% from the floor while connecting on 39% from deep, the Knicks were able to make 50% as a team while finishing 12-24 from long-range, 10 total by RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickly, along with Julius Randle. New York covered for the 2nd-straight game as 1-point favorites and are a solid 7-3 against the number in their last 10 outings.

The Pistons lost 2-straight games after falling by 3-points at home to the Sacramento Kings Friday night as they were outscored 35-27 in the 4th to relinquish a 5-point lead at the end of the 3rd to fall for the 24th game of the year. Jerami Grant led the team with 30 points while Dennis Smith, Jr. along with Saddiq Bey also chipped in 17 points each as the offense shot 45% for the game. And while the defense allowed just 42% shooting to the Kings, they allowed them to get to the line 41 times in addition to giving up 49 rebounds (14 offensive) in the loss. The Pistons failed to cover as 1.5-point dogs and are just 2-4 ATS in their last 6, overall.

New York has won 2-straight versus Detroit; However, the Pistons have picked up outright wins in 8 of 10 meetings, including 4 of 5 at Lil Ceaser’s Arena. And while the Pistons are 6-4 ATS in their last 10 versus the Knicks, New York has covered in 3 of their last 5 roadies versus Detroit.

Randle and Barrett shine again for Knicks win

Randle recorded his 4th-straight double-double versus Indiana ending with 28 points, 10 boards, along with 6 assists on 12-22 shooting while Barrett continues to improve upon his shooting percentages as he finished 8-17 FG along with 4-6 from long-range for 24 points and 7 rebounds. Together, the duo continues to be the tip of the spear in the Knicks’ offensive attack with Randle shooting 47% FG along with over 41% from deep while Barrett has improved his shooting percentages to 43% on the year.

Combine this with solid minutes from Derrick Rose along with Quickley, who finished with 17 and 10, respectively, versus the Pacers, and the Knicks are slowly turning into a team that can possibly be a threat in the Eastern Conference. Important to note that the win versus the Pacers moved them a half-game behind the Toronto Raptors for 3rd in the Atlantic standings at 16-17 on the year.

The Knicks have had some injuries at the guard position lately, however, with Austin Rivers along with Elfrid Payton each being on the injured list with illness along with a hamstring ailment. However, with Rose, who will face his former team in the Pistons for the 1st time since his trade last month, continuing to provide solid minutes within the starting 5 in place of Payton, New York has not missed a beat in his absence.

Barrett struggled in the team’s last matchup versus Detroit shooting 5-16 FG along with missing 3 of 4 of his shots from deep for 12 points while Randle led the way with 22 points and 12 boards on 50% shooting as the Knicks shot 44% as a team. On the other hand, New York held the Pistons to only 36% shooting, including just 29% from long-range

Pistons badly in need of a win

With Blake Griffin already declared out indefinitely due to rest, the team will be without point guard Delon Wright, who is now out until early-March with a groin injury. And for a team that is averaging just 108 points on 43% shooting on the year, including posting 105 points or less in 4 of 5 games, their absence could not have come at a worse time. Furthermore, with the Pistons averaging just 88 points in their last 2 outings versus the Knicks, Detroit may indeed be in for yet another dismal offensive performance in this showdown.

Grant has continued his stellar play for the Pistons, however, shooting 44% from the floor along with 37% on the year. Rookie Bey has been a welcoming offensive addition as well averaging 15 points per in his last 10 outings (5 points over his yearly number) while shooting over 40% from long-range. Smith, Jr. has also been stellar as of late averaging 14 points in his last 3 outings, including going 7-13 FG. And aside from reserve Josh Jackson averaging 14 off the bench, there has not been much more production on this end of the floor for Detroit in 2020-21.

However, I happen to believe that they will take the court with focus and intensity for this matchup to end their skid before taking the road for a 4-game East Coast trip. Worth noting that the Pistons have dropped 15 of 18 away from home thus far.

The Bottom Line
What to bet on this game.

Full-Game Side Bet
Rating:
 

Despite the Knicks playing on the 2nd of a back-to-back, they have a young nucleus that continues to improve while the team has picked up wins against the number in 2 of their last 3 on the road.  Detroit, on the other hand, continues to struggle in addition to dropping 3 of their last 5 ATS at Lil Ceaser’s Arena.  Again, I trust New York and the point on the 2nd of a back-to-back that I do a Pistons team that has dropped 6 of their last 9 games.

Prediction:
New York Knicks -1

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Full-Game Total Pick
Rating:
 

The under has been the play in 4 of the last 6 meetings between these 2 squads.  Furthermore, it is 3-0 in the last 3 roadies for the Knicks (3-1 overall) along with 2 of the last 3 home games for the Pistons (5-1 overall).  And while I happen to believe that the Knicks have more of the up-side when comparing these 2 teams, they each have a tendency to experience bouts of inconsistency, particularly on the offensive end.  In all, take the under in what should be a low-scoring affair throughout.

Prediction:
Under 215