The NBA Playoffs are upon us and with just 10 days until the start of the postseason, there are still teams fighting to get into the tournament. Over the next few weeks I will be giving each team currently in the playoff race an opportunity to see how it will be possible for them to win the NBA Finals. I will be writing these in order of which teams I believe have absolutely no chance to the teams with the highest possibility of hoisting the trophy. Let's dive in.
The Detroit Pistons, what a mess huh? On the contrary, a team playing with house money is always very dangerous. Not a single soul in the basketball world believes these guys have a chance, which should only fuel their fire. With 5 games left in their season, they not only need to win out, but they also need the Milwaukee Bucks to lose out. The Pistons face the Sixers and Raptors over this final stretch, and wins over those teams would give them extreme confidence heading into the playoffs most likely facing Toronto in the first round.
A mid-season trade for Blake Griffin looked like a move that was going to propel the Pistons into the playoffs. But injuries and a lack of willingness to change from coach Stan Van Gundy has hindered their chances to get back into the playoffs. Andre Drummond leads the league in rebounding with 1198 rebounds and 16 per game. That doesn't even make sense, he is dominating his opponents on the boards night in and night out. And to have an athletic big like Blake Griffin to share the load down low has only eased the pressure off of Drummond. And with Reggie Jackson back and healthy, the Pistons have their three "guys" that they can lean heavily on.
So lets talk hypotheticals. Let's say the Pistons get red hot and win their way into the playoffs with a first round matchup against a Raptors team who has struggled over the last month of the season. Andre Drummond will scoop up every rebound on both ends of the floor and give his team second chances at points while taking those chances away from the Raptors. Blake Griffin will eat up guys like Poetl and Siakam on his way to 35 points per game. Reggie Jackson will lock down Kyle Lowry on the defensive end, while dropping dimes to his hot three point shooters in Luke Kennard, Langston Galloway, and Stanley Johnson. The Raptors will once again choke their way out of the playoffs in a Game 7 loss at home on a buzzer beater by Blake Griffin that will set the city of Detroit on fire.
They will find themselves in a second round matchup with the Philadelphia 76ers, one of the hottest teams in the league. Unfortunately, for the 76ers in this situation, they will be without Embiid who could not overcome his recent orbital injury that he suffered. Ben Simmons will be swayed to stay out of the lane with Detroit's big men forcing him to shoot jumpers all series. Guys like Covington, Belinelli, Saric and Redick will be forced to carry the scoring load and will not live up to their playoff expectations. Ish Smith will want revenge on the 76ers and will be the hero of this series off of the bench. The Pistons will win another grueling 7 game series that will send them to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Luckily for them, the Boston Celtics found a way to knock Lebron out of the playoff race and has opened the door for a new Eastern Conference team to represent in the Finals for the first time in 8 years. In the first game of the series, Kyrie Irving injures his ailing knee and won't return for the series. Leaving undersized guys like Shane Larkin and Terry Rozier responsible for guarding Reggie Jackson, which won't end well for the Celtics. The Pistons remain hot and Blake Griffin continues to eat, dominating guys like Baynes and Theis in the post. Drummond will destroy Greg Monroe and will force the Celtics to depend on jump shots. In game 7 of the series, the Celtics go ice cold and the Pistons will make 20 three pointers on their way to the most improbable run to the NBA Finals.
With Steph Curry never becoming fully healthy, James Harden and Chris Paul failing to do their jobs, Blazers choking, and the Spurs organization getting abducted by aliens, the Los Angeles Clippers find a way into the NBA Finals for a matchup against Blake Griffin. The most unbelievable will happen this year if all of those things happen. With the whole world freaking out about the aliens, the only people focused on winning are the Detroit Pistons in probably the last NBA Finals before the world ends. I'm guessing the aliens didn't bother to abduct either of these teams because they just didn't even know these teams existed. The Pistons have to go the full 7 games again to hoist their first NBA Finals trophy for the 4th time in their organization's history and Griffin gets the ultimate revenge against his former team for trading him away.
Basically what I'm saying is Detroit, keep faith man. Anything is possible. Except for winning the title this year. That is in fact impossible. Unless all of those things I mentioned happen. In which case, I hope that you don't get abducted by aliens and get to witness your first championship in 14 years. Well maybe the aliens have a better viewing experience than television, maybe they abducted all those people and the Spurs for Space Jam 2 with the revamped roster for the Monstars. Actually yeah, being abducted sounds better than living in America in 2018. Anyway, good luck Detroit. You're gonna need it after that tough Michigan loss. . . Too soon?
As long as the Pistons have Drummond, they have a punchers chance... literally
Just a man trying to make the most of his time on this planet.