NBA Basketball

Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Detroit 35 30 18 23 106
Charlotte 25 26 32 26 109
4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST4:00 UAE (+1)01:0019:00 ET6:00 PM CT22:00 , November 15, 2019
Spectrum Center, Charlotte, North Carolina  Attendance: 16,778

Slumping Hornets aim to get back on track vs. Pistons

According to STATS
According to STATS

Detroit Pistons at Charlotte Hornets

  1. Charlotte has won its last six meetings with the Pistons, its longest active win streak against any opponent. The Hornets' only longer win streak in series history was an 11-gamer from 1993-95.
  2. The Hornets suffered their fourth consecutive loss on Wednesday at home against Memphis, 119-117. Memphis shot 53.3 percent from the field, and the Hornets now rank last in the NBA with a .493 opponent field-goal percentage.
  3. Detroit won its season opener at Indiana on October 23, but has lost all five of its road games since then. The Pistons have allowed at least 110 points in all six road contests (115.2 ppg).
  4. Luke Kennard has scored 20+ points in three straight games for the first time in his career. He's raised his scoring average from 9.7 per game last season to the current 18.9, the third-largest increase among those who have played in at least 70 percent of their team's games both seasons.
  5. Andre Drummond had 16 points and a season-low nine rebounds in Tuesday's 117-108 loss at Miami, ending his streak of 11 straight double-doubles to open the season. He's averaging an NBA-high 16.8 rebounds, after leading the league in the category each of the previous two seasons.
  6. Terry Rozier tied a career high with 33 points in Wednesday's loss to Memphis, making 7-of-12 three-pointers. He's one of seven Hornets with at least one 20-point game this season; only the Clippers have more such players, with eight (the Heat and Pelicans also have seven).

The Charlotte Hornets adjusted their starting lineup but couldn't alter the way a game finished this week.

So that puts a premium on a better result Friday night against the visiting Detroit Pistons when the teams meet in Charlotte, N.C.

Charlotte is on a four-game losing streak, while the Pistons have dropped three games in a row.

Hornets coach James Borrego said he would evaluate the various lineup combinations.

"See how this group reacted," he said. "We had a different rotation with starting (Devonte' Graham and Terry Rozier) together."

The search for a spark is ongoing. In Wednesday night's 119-117 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, Rozier matched his career high with 33 points.

"He looked much more comfortable," Borrego said. "His rhythm was there. He competed and played hard."

Graham was a starter for the first time this season, ending up with 19 points that included a final-minute tying 3-point basket.

The overriding issue for the Hornets tends to be sustaining their good stretches. They broke a tie with a 12-0 run in the third quarter and then saw the lead vanish.

"You've got to find a way to close out," Borrego said. "You do that with poise, execution and defending. ... They're competing. They're playing hard. They're playing to the last second."

The Charlotte backcourt also received a boost from Malik Monk, whose contributions have started to become more consistent.

"Malik was aggressive. He made good reads, good plays," Borrego said. "There's real growth there. He's making plays for us right now."

For the second time in four games, Charlotte rookie forward PJ Washington was held to five points or less. Borrego said that's all part of the learning curve for a player who's suddenly thrust into a steady diet of games.

"I don't want to wear him out. It's a long year," Borrego said. "I trust him. I like him. I think he's getting better."

The Pistons had a strange, weather-impacted trip to Miami, meaning little rest for back-to-back games at the beginning of the week.

Overcoming such challenges is something Detroit coach Dwane Casey would like to see from his team.

"It's the way you start," Casey said. "We have to fight through adversity. That's what life is about, that's what this game is about."

Guard Luke Kennard agreed.

"We can't let excuses dictate how we play, how we start games," Kennard said.

Kennard has led Detroit in scoring in the past three games with 29, 25 and 22 points in that order. He overcame a rough shooting stretch in the last game against the Miami Heat, something that he has been addressing so that he can effectively move on after the ball doesn't go in.

"I've kind of worked on that ... mentally being locked in," Kennard said.

It's worth seeing how Detroit forward Blake Griffin and guard Derrick Rose responded from returning from injuries to play Monday. By design, they weren't on the court Tuesday so that they wouldn't be playing on back-to-back nights.

The visit to Charlotte is the lone game across a seven-day span for Detroit. Still, it hasn't been an uneventful period for the Pistons, with guard Khyri Thomas undergoing foot surgery that will cost him at least a couple of months of the season.

--Field Level Media

Updated November 14, 2019

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