Detroit Pistons vs. Philadelphia 76ers Pick & Prediction DECEMBER 13th 2023

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Blackjack players aim to get 21. For Detroit Pistons players, it would be just another losing hand.

The Pistons have lost 20 straight, a single-season franchise record. They could equal their longest losing streak of any span if they fall to the visiting Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday.

They had a 21-game slide at the end of the 1979-80 season and beginning of 1980-81.

Coincidentally, the Sixers hold both NBA records for longest losing streaks. They tied the single-season mark at 26 straight in 2013-14 and set the overall mark at 28 at the end of 2014-15 and beginning of 2015-16.

Detroit hit the 20-loss mark at home on Monday, as Indiana pulled away to a 131-123 triumph.

The Pistons failed to reach the 100-point mark for the first time this season in their previous game, as Orlando recorded a 32-point blowout. Against the Pacers, Detroit shot 55.6 percent from the field but the Pacers topped that, making 56.5 percent of their attempts.

“As much as this losing hurts us, and it hurts like you can’t believe, I see a lot of growth,” Pistons coach Monty Williams said. “I’m encouraged by some of the things we saw tonight. We just need to build on them.”

Another encouraging sign was the play of guard Jaden Ivey, a 2022 lottery pick who supplied 18 points in 34 minutes off the bench.

“We’re trying to change up the rotations a bit to get certain combinations on the floor where (Ivey) can have live ball situations, get the ball in a flow and attack,” Williams said. “The best offense for us with him is a jailbreak where we give it to him and hit ahead. I don’t think there’s anybody in the league who can catch that kid when he’s got a head of steam. That part is a work in progress.”

Ivey was expected to pair up with 2021 No. 1 overall pick Cade Cunningham in the lineup, but Williams has mainly started fourth-year guard Killian Hayes.

“Obviously, it’s challenging,” Ivey said. “You’re trying to find yourself, when you play a certain role for a whole year and then are flipped into a different role. It’s like you’re trying to figure out how you can feel good and do your best in that role.”

The Sixers are cruising along, averaging 134 points in those contests during a three-game winning streak.

Philadelphia overwhelmed the Wizards 146-101 on Monday. The Sixers were up 75-46 at halftime.

“Usually in an NBA game, you’re going to see it swing back the other way for a while,” Sixers coach Nick Nurse said. “Our guys just kept playing with good assertiveness at both ends almost for the whole game.”

The team’s stars had big games before relaxing in the fourth quarter. Joel Embiid racked up 34 points, 11 rebounds and six assists in 30 minutes, while Tyrese Maxey notched 24 points and six assists in 25 minutes.

Philadelphia has hit a soft spot in its schedule. The Sixers will play the Pistons again on Friday, then face Charlotte and Chicago. The Pistons, Wizards, Hornets and Bulls occupied the four bottom spots in the Eastern Conference standings entering Tuesday’s action.

“You’ve got to respect the game. You’ve got to respect the opponent,” Embiid said. “On any given night, teams and players could just go off.”

–Field Level Media

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