NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, November 1st (All times Eastern)
Detroit Pistons (1-0) at Memphis Grizzlies (0-1), 8 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Memphis Grizzlies look to get that first victory of the new season Friday night when they welcome the Detroit Pistons to FedEx Forum.
The Grizz were bested by the San Antonio Spurs in a rematch of the Western Conference Finals Wednesday, 101-94. It spoiled the coaching debut of Dave Joerger, who took over for Lionel Hollins in the offseason.
Memphis was one of the league's best defensive teams last season, although they got off to a rocky start in this campaign. The Spurs shot 52.6 percent from the floor and 55 percent from the 3-point line.
"We're doing something new. It's new for everybody. We just have to work it out," Zach Randolph told NBA.com. "We have to stay positive, keep playing and stick together."
It'll be hard for Randolph to stay positive after only two points and seven rebounds against San Antonio. Randolph was an All-Star last season.
Tony Allen of all people led the Grizzlies with 15 points, followed by 14 apiece from Mike Conley and Marc Gasol, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year.
Quincy Pondexter, who just signed a contract extension with Memphis, chipped in 13 off the bench and Mike Miller, who returned to the Grizzlies after two titles with the Miami Heat, netted 11.
The Pistons won their season-opener 113-102 Wednesday over the Washington Wizards. Detroit got balanced scoring from its starting five, the only players in double figures for Detroit.
"To get a win number one is the first thing," said new head coach Maurice Cheeks. "We are missing a couple guys that we plan on being key players for us; but the guys that we're going to count on, they made plays for us."
With Brandon Jennings and Rodney Stuckey sidelined by injury, Greg Monroe led the way for Detroit with 24 points and 16 rebounds.
"We were doing our job; rebounding the ball, helping each other, finding each other," said Monroe, who did not get a contract extension offer from the Pistons.
Josh Smith, Detroit's big free-agent addition, had 19 points, five rebounds and five assists, and Will Bynum, starting in place of Jennings, also scored 19.
Chauncey Billups, back with the Pistons after leading them to a title in 2004, had 16 and Andre Drummond managed 12.
Memphis has won seven straight against Detroit, including three in a row at home.
11/01 10:45:38 ET