Pistons look to build momentum as they face the Knicks on the road

The Detroit Pistons head into Madison Square Garden to face the New York Knicks on the back of breaking their road losing streak and blowing out the Oklahoma City Thunder.

After starting the season 0-5 on the road the Detroit Pistons snapped their skid against the Denver Nuggets, which will hopefully give the squad confidence now they finally have the monkey off their back.

The way they dismantled Oklahoma City despite having neither Reggie Jackson nor Andre Drummond in the starting lineup also shows how well the team is clicking at the moment.

Drummond’s game status is currently up in the air and a decision will likely be made closer to tip-off over whether his ankle is healthy enough for him to take the court.

However, if Drummond isn’t able to suit up they have a capable replacement in Aron Baynes.

Often criticised, Baynes was ferocious as he received just his second start for the Pistons.

He dropped 20 points, one point shy of his career high, while also chipping in with 8 rebounds and shooting 61.5 per cent from the field and 100 per cent from the free throw line.

Drummond struggled in the Pistons first game against the Knicks this season, only managing 9 points on 30.8 percent from the field, so Baynes starting for just one more game might not be the worst thing in the world.

The Knicks are coming off a confidence-boosting 93-77 win over the Dallas Mavericks.

Both Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis found their groove as they combined for 48 points and 18 rebounds while each shooting over 40 percent from the three-point line.

Shutting this forward combo down will be priority number one for the Pistons, as the Knicks roster falls away in quality significantly after Anthony and Pozingis.

Marcus Morris and Tobias Harris will have their hands full all night, particularly Harris who’s only listed at 6’9″ compared to the monolithic Porzingis who is 7’3″.

In the previous game Anthony scored 24 and Porzingis dropped 18, yet the Pistons were still able to come away with the win.

If the Pistons can keep these two from getting too hot the Pistons should be able to manufacture a dominant win.

Stan Van Gundy has the luxury of being able to switch Morris and Harris onto Anthony, which will help tremendously.

Van Gundy may also look to give Jon Leuer some time defending Porzingis as he gives the team greater length on defence.

The Knicks bench is also particularly bad, which was evident the first time these teams played, where the Knicks scored 19 bench points, 12 of which came from former Piston Brandon Jennings.

They currently rank 20th in the league in bench points with 30.4 point per game, however the Pistons lag behind them in 25th with just 28.5.

However, this is likely to see a significant boost once Reggie Jackson returns and Ish Smith is able to play off the bench.

Similarly to the Pistons, the Knicks have had a gigantic gulf between their best and worst performances this season.

The Knicks have won their four games by an average of 12.5 points, while they’ve lost their six games by an average of 17.5 points.

Two of their losses have been by 28 and 29 points.

If the Pistons come prepared and turn in an offensive and defensive effort on the road like they did in Denver, this game should keep the teams’ win streak rolling.

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