NBA Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, April 1st
(All times Eastern)
Detroit Pistons (24-50) at Toronto Raptors (27-46), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - A pair of Eastern Conference teams playing out the string
clash Monday night north of the border as the Toronto Raptors entertain the
Detroit Pistons at Air Canada Centre.
The Raptors will play two in a row at home, where they have lost three
straight and own a 17-19 record.
Toronto sustained a 109-92 setback at Washington on Sunday. Jonas Valanciunas
registered 18 points and 10 rebounds for the Raptors, who have lost six of
their last seven games and were coming off a win at Detroit on Friday. Kyle
Lowry and DeMar DeRozan scored 15 points apiece in defeat.
"I thought we came out with a relaxed disposition and didn't come out ready to
go," said Raptors coach Dwane Casey. "The guys didn't look like they were
ready to move their feet defensively. We had some frustration fouls which kind
of set the tone for the course of the game."
The Raptors will host the Wizards on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the Pistons opened a four-game road trip with Sunday's tough 95-94
loss against the Chicago Bulls.
Rodney Stuckey had a team-high 25 points off the bench and Greg Monroe added
18 points and 10 rebounds for the Pistons, losers of three straight and 13 of
their last 14 games.
"This isn't a one-player problem," said Pistons coach Lawrence Frank. "This
isn't a one-coach problem. This is a team problem that we all have to share
the responsibility. We all want to get this right. We'll find (the answers)
whether they're here on our roster now or whether it's (someone else) in the
future that will play at a whole lot more competitive level. We're capable of
doing a whole lot more."
Detroit is only 9-27 away from The Palace this season and has Boston and
Minnesota to play on the road trip.
On the injury front for the Pistons, guard Will Bynum (hand) and forward Jason
Maxiell (eye) are questionable against the Raptors. Guard Jose Calderon is
probable for Monday's game in his return to Air Canada Centre.
Calderon was shipped to the Pistons a few months ago in the deal that sent
Rudy Gay to the Raptors from Memphis. Calderon spent eight seasons with the
Raptors and is their all-time leader in assists (3,770).
The Raptors have won two of three against the Pistons this season, but are
just 3-6 in the past nine meetings. These two teams have split the last eight
contests at Toronto.
04/01 10:24:43 ET