Detroit looked to get their winning ways back on track against the Washington Wizards Saturday night. Unfortunately for the Pistons, the Wizards had other plans.
Washington scored 62 points in the first half, in which the Pistons put forth their worst defensive effort of the season.
Coach Maurice Cheeks was so upset with his team, that he decided to bench Josh Smith for the entire second half.
“I just felt like I wanted to make a change and stay with the guys I went with,” Cheeks said.
Smith was clearly upset with the benching and let reporters know about it after the game.
“I mean it’s unfair because like I told you before, I play the game hard each and every day,” Smith said.
“When I was younger I played this game free year around. So why wouldn’t I want to come out here and put my best foot forward every time I step out?”
Detroit would fail to outscore the Wizards in any quarter and would eventually lose the game 106-82.
Monday night, the Wizards came to the Palace of Auburn Hills for the second part of a home-and-home. The Pistons played a much more respectable game, but their fourth quarter struggles continued, as they allowed another fourth quarter lead to slip away.
Detroit took a nine point lead into the fourth quarter, but got outscored by the Wizards 28-12, eventually losing 106-99. This was the Pistons’ fourth loss in their last five games.
Finally, in their first game of 2014, the Pistons hosted the Memphis Grizzlies. In a battle of two underachieving teams, the Grizzlies put the Pistons to shame.
In a second half that saw Memphis outscore Detroit by 33, the Pistons ended up getting blown out again, and moved their record even further away in the wrong direction from .500.
The Pistons have lost six out of their last seven games and have been blown out by more than 10 points in six of those losses.
Detroit travels next to New York Tuesday night to go up against Carmelo Anthony and the New York Knicks. The game starts at 7:30 p.m. and can be seen on Fox Sports Detroit.
Cameron Billes is the host of Horsepower for Impact Sports.