How Do Bad-Shooting, Turnover-Prone Detroit Pistons Compare To NBA’s Roll-Over 2015-16 Philadelphia 76ers?

NBA: Brooklyn Nets at Detroit Pistons

The Detroit Pistons are preparing for a big home game against the Toronto Raptors on Saturday. 

Losers of 28 straight NBA games, the Pistons, who allowed a 19-point, first-half lead to slip away Thursday, are on the verge of establishing a record for futility. 

A loss to the Raptors at Little Caesars Arena would break the Pistons’ tie with the Philadelphia 76ers for the league’s longest losing streak. 

The Pistons, who rank 28th in points per game (109.7) and tied for last in turnovers per game (15.9), started the regular season 2-1, but have not won since Oct. 28. The 76ers compiled their losses in parts of consecutive campaigns, ending Dec. 26, 2015. 

Are the current Pistons as bad as the 2015-16 76ers? 

Or are they worse?

Pistons Built To Win; 76ers No So Much 

What is the biggest difference between two of the worst clubs in league history? 

The 76ers’ roster eight seasons ago was constructed to lose and bankroll high draft assets.  

The Pistons’ marketing department entered this season promoting the young roster possessed enough talent to not only qualify for the playoffs for the first time since 2019, but capture its first postseason victory since 2008. 

The promotions were a bit off-target. 

The 76ers, who termed their roster rebuild “The Process,” were outscored by an average of 10.2 points per game during the 2015-16 season. Overmatched, the 76ers fielded the league’s 29th-ranked offense and defense. 

Fifteen of the 18 players who dressed for the 76ers had three or fewer years of experience, including four rookies. Their preseason odds to claim the NBA championship was +100000, according to 

The 76ers were the butt of constant tank jokes. Fans accused the front office of dressing players who didn’t belong in the NBA. They finished with a 10-72 mark, the third-worst record in league history. 

Their reward? 

The franchise’s ineptness extended to the front office. During the 2016 and ‘17 drafts, the 76ers selected Ben Simmons and Markelle Fultz with consecutive 1-1s. They passed on Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, allowing the rival Celtics to pick the future cornerstones at No. 3 overall. Tatum scored 31 points Thursday.

Pistons Have Big Problems, Getting Bigger

Facing the Celtics, the NBA’s top team, the Pistons took advantage of the host club taking the opposition for granted, claiming a 66-47 halftime lead.

The Celtics woke up and the Pistons went cold and were eventually outscored, 36-16, during the third quarter. The Celtics made clutch shots late and secured a 128-122 overtime victory.

Critics denounced “The Process” 76ers, who dropped the final 10 outings during 2014-15 and the opening 18 the next season.

Naysayers are pointing to the Pistons’ philosophy. They aren’t intent to tank like the 76ers, but are doing less with more. Cade Cunningham, the team’s leading scorer at 23.3 points per game, Bojan Bogdanovic, Jaden Ivey, Jalen Duren and rookie Ausar Thompson remain the franchise’s core. The Pistons’ preseason league title odds were +50000.

“We wanted to be competing every day, (to have) a chance for the play-in, playoffs,” Pistons owner Tom Gores said last week, as reported by ESPN. “We wanted our players to grow. Those were the expectations: to compete, grow and be near the playoffs.”

Near the playoffs?

At 2-29, they couldn’t be further from those expectations.

Big game Saturday.

One more loss and the Pistons will own a longer losing streak than a franchise that wanted to lose.

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