Detroit Pistons vs. Indiana Pacers Pick & Prediction DECEMBER 11th 2023

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Indiana came up short in its quest to win the inaugural NBA in-season tournament. The Pacers will have an entirely different challenge on Monday in Detroit when they try to avoid being the opponent the Pistons defeat to end their franchise-record losing streak.

The Los Angeles Lakers downed the Pacers in Las Vegas on Saturday, 123-109, in the tournament final. Indiana was unable to stop Los Angeles superstars Anthony Davis and LeBron James and guard Austin Reaves, who combined for 93 points.

“We’re sick, frustrated,” Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton said. “We just got outplayed tonight from the start of the game to the end of the game.”

Overall, the tournament was a boon to Indiana players and the franchise. They each received $200,000 for reaching the championship game. They also established that they’ll be a factor in the Eastern Conference, and Haliburton showcased his talents on a national stage.

“The result happened and (the Lakers) won the Cup, so congratulations to them. But our guys had an amazing run over whatever this was, five or six weeks,” coach Rick Carlisle said. “Brought a lot of attention to Pacer Nation. Brought a lot of attention to an exciting group of young players.”

While James won the tournament MVP, Haliburton was its breakout star. He finished with more total points (187) and assists (93) than any other player.

The Pacers collected victories over some of the top contenders for the Eastern crown, including Philadelphia, Boston and Milwaukee.

“We’ve done some great things to get here, competed against some really good teams and battled, and you can’t let that happen for no reason,” Haliburton said. “We’ve got a four-game road trip coming up here, you’ve got to take care of business.”

The Pistons just want to know what winning feels like again. After a 2-1 start, they have lost 19 straight.

They’ve already blown past their previous single-season record of 14 straight losses. They had a 21-game slide at the end of the 1979-80 season that extended to the beginning of 1980-81.

The single-season streak is the longest since Houston dropped 20 straight in 2020-21.

If the Pistons play like they did in Orlando on Friday, the streak won’t end anytime soon. They were blown out 123-91, failing to hit the 100-point mark for the first time this season.

Orlando shot 55.1 percent from the field and scored 74 points in the paint.

“They’re a good defensive team but we missed a lot of open shots,” Pistons coach Monty Williams said. “They take away the paint, force you to play outside. We generated only 30 threes and just didn’t hit a good percentage (6 of 30). We just had a hard time putting the ball in the basket.”

The Pistons will have a hard time ending their streak this week. After they face the high-flying Pacers, they have a home-and-home set with Philadelphia and a road contest against Milwaukee.

“We can’t lose by 30 to the Magic,” Detroit guard Killian Hayes said. “We have to draw that line, like Coach said. … We need to get to the point where we are turning that page. We keep talking about it, but now we have to do something.”

–Field Level Media

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