Atlanta Hawks Game Preview: First Matchup vs. Pistons

Blake Griffin #23 vs. Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Blake Griffin #23 vs. Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) /

A preview of the Atlanta Hawks matchup tonight against the Detroit Pistons.

The Atlanta Hawks will play the team’s first game of the season against the playoff-contending Detroit Pistons.

The Pistons are currently in the thick of the playoff hunt, which has mostly been founded on the sturdy center play and automatic rebounding of Andre Drummond as well as the superlative efforts of Blake Griffin, who is honestly playing like an MVP in the early goings of this season.

After dropping a 50-burger on the Philadlelphia 76ers, Griffin just keeps clicking along, and he has looked exceptionally comfortable helming an entire offense single-handedly – something the “point Blake” backers must be relishing after he was traded away as one of the final vestiges of the magical “Lob City” Clippers days.

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Detroit is currently scrapping with the Charlotte Hornets and Orlando Magic for placement in the 6th to 8th seed in the Eastern Conference, though the Pistons started out quite hot. Beyond the team’s big stars of Drummond and Griffin, the ever-mercurial Reggie Jackson can be either be an incandescent offensive juggernaut or a complete zero on both ends – there seems to be no in-between for the former member of the OKC Thunder.

The Pistons also have high lottery pick Luke Kennard (taken directly ahead of Donovan Mitchell) and Soaring Down South favorites in rookies Khyri Thomas and Bruce Brown. Thomas played sparingly so far, but Brown is actually 9th on the team in total minutes as of this writing though his true shooting percentage of 47.6 percent is bottom-three among all Pistons.

Beyond those players, the Pistons have two recent former Hawks among their ranks in Jose Calderon and Zaza Pachulia, who has played half of his 16 seasons in Atlanta – spending much of his prime with the Hawks.

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This weekend game features an early tip-off of 4:00 p.m. ahead of the holiday weekend.