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Pre-Game Reconnaissance: Knicks-Pistons—10/21/17

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Prepare yourself for for Knicks-Pistons!

NBA: Preseason-Detroit Pistons at Toronto Raptors Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

It’s the home opener!

After their season opening road loss to OKC, the Knicks are back in the friendly confines of The Garden to face the Detroit Pistons. The Pistons come into this game 1-1, winning on opening night against Charlotte and dropping last night’s game against Washington, despite a big night from Reggie Jackson.

New York City is ready for basketball to be back!

The Foe:

To give us a little insight on the 2017-18 Detroit Pistons, here’s Lazarus Jackson from SBNation’s Pistons’ affiliate Detroit Bad Boys!

So far, the biggest indicator the Pistons might be better than they were last year is the explosion Reggie Jackson has been showing on drives. He led the charge in the near-comeback against Washington Friday with a mix of layups, passes, and threes - very reminiscent of the "old" Reggie. This game will be the first back-to-back of the year, though, and a lot of fans will be keeping a close eye on if Jackson still has that explosion on the SEGABABA. If he does, or even approximates that, it's a great sign this early in the season for Detroit.

Tobias Harris was huge in the first game of the season against the Hornets doing what he does best - providing efficient scoring from a bunch of different play types (PNR ballhandler, roll man, spotting up from three, in transition, off DHO's... you get the idea). The hope is that he gets the opportunities and touches to be close to an All-Star this year, but the fear is that the Pistons will revert to feeding Andre Drummond in the post instead.

Speaking of Drummond, he's played with good energy the first two games of the year, which is really all Pistons fans are looking for. Yes, he picked up three fouls in ~90 seconds in Washington to foul out, but that just means he's fresh for tonight, right? Well, at least Drummond is 3-3 from the free-throw line in the young season. Combine that with shooting 80 percent from the free-throw line in the preseason thanks to a new, more compact stroke, the improvement in that department appears real.

Personally, I didn't watch much of the Knicks-OKC game, but what I did see was Kristaps beasting on Melo repeatedly. Pistons fans should be worried about Kristaps - the Pistons have no one on the roster than can defend his mixture of length and skill. Jon Leuer probably comes closest, which tells you all you need to know about how Kristaps will play against Detroit.

Shoutout to Lazarus! You can follow him on Twitter @lazchance!

The Knicks:

New York is probably going to be without Frank Ntilikina again. The bad news is that this isn’t the same injury that bugged him all summer and the preseason, this seems to be a new one. Ramon Sessions, who played badly against OKC, might be the guy for much longer than we thought he’d be.

Dang! This is bad news for the Knicks, who can’t afford much more bad news. This is so bad that people don’t wanna be Knicks fans anymore!

The good news is that Kristaps looks incredible and the Pistons aren’t the Thunder. If Detroit goes with the same lineup they did against Washington, that could be a very interesting matchup against the Knicks. Andre Drummond against Enes Kanter is probably not going to go well but who knows! Drummond is not a good offensive player and is a great defensive player. The exact opposite of Kanter! Could be interesting. KP vs. Pistons’ bigs should be fun, though. It would also be really cool to see much more Willy Hernangomez. I miss that guy, wonder what he’s been up to lately. The Pistons’ new guard combo of Reggie Jackson and Avery Bradley is pretty dang good and should present problems for New York’s back court.

I guess all I’m trying to say is that this game could be an ugly one all around and there are going to be so many celebrities present to see it.

MISC.:

This game is probably going to be more competitive than the season opener was, whatever that means. I think I speak for everyone when I say I’d rather see KP and Willy cook than anything else.

Yankees game 7, tho!

***

Game is at 8 on MSG! I asked for no injuries last time and Ntilikina hurt himself so I’ll stay quiet. And now you’re ready for Knicks-Pistons!