Despite a disappointing first season under head coach Stan Van Gundy that resulted in just 32 wins, the Detroit Pistons might be in a position to surprise in the new season. They have a solid nucleus of talent, and by adding Stanley Johnson with the eighth-overall pick in this past June’s NBA Draft, the future has become brighter for a franchise trying to end its long playoff drought.
Along with Johnson, the Pistons possess some pretty impressive players, like Andre Drummond, Brandon Jennings, and newcomer Reggie Jackson, whom the team acquired from the Oklahoma City Thunder at last year’s trade deadline. That’s a very talented trio capable of leading a playoff-bound organization, and that’s exactly what Detroit is hoping for in the 2015-16 campaign.
As of now, Pistons tickets are extremely affordable on the secondary, according to TiqIQ.com. In fact, their games collectively have an average ticket price of just $122.56, which is pretty low when compared to every other NBA team. While that seems surprising for a storied franchise that appears to be back on the rise, fans can’t complain at all, as it only provides them with more of an opportunity to see Detroit’s ascension live and in person at the Palace of Auburn Hills. Out-of-town fans will certainly want in on the action as well, and luckily, there is Hipmunk.com to accommodate all of their basketball getaway needs. They have the most affordable airfare to Detroit, as well as the best option for a cheap Detroit hotel with rooms starting at just $51, that can solidify the perfect vacation built around Pistons basketball.
As with every team, the recently released Pistons schedule contains several must-see games that fans may already have circled on their calendar. For instance, on December 4, Greg Monroe will be making his first trip back to Detroit since signing a three-year, $50-million dollar deal with the Milwaukee Bucks over the offseason. Monroe, of course, was drafted by the Pistons and has spent his entire career in the Motor City.
Only two days later, on December 6 to be exact, Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant will stop by in what might be his final appearance at the Palace, with the upcoming season possibly being his last. Given his status as one of the greatest players in league history, this is arguably the No. 1 game to attend for Pistons fans. Josh Smith, another former member of the roster, will make his return when his new team, the Los Angeles Clippers, comes to town on December 14.
The measuring stick for every team within a season is when they take on the defending champions, and the Pistons will find out what they’re made of when the Golden State Warriors arrive in Detroit on January 16. It’s also worth noting a matchup with another Western Conference power, when the Pistons collide with the Thunder in Jackson’s first game against his old club since last season’s trade. That affair will take place on March 29.
Despite losing Monroe, the Pistons are still a team with a unique blend of talent. Jackson and Jennings are two very capable lead-guards who can produce as starters, and will be one of the more exciting backcourts in basketball when they share the floor. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, meanwhile, made strides in his sophomore season, while Drummond has already developed into a double-double machine. A lot of pundits even believe his best is still yet to come. Without question, the Pistons have the pieces to string together wins, but the question will be if they can finally do that consistently. With a full year of Jackson and Jennings together, this looks like it will be the year they return to respectability.