Reggie Jackson Out for Extended Time

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According to a story published first by the Detroit Free Press, Detroit Pistons’ point guard Reggie Jackson will miss on-court action due to tendinitis in his knee.

Coach and President of Basketball Operations Stan Van Gundy said that Jackson could be out six-to-eight weeks at the most.

Jackson and the Pistons had high expectations entering this season, coming off their first playoff appearance since 2009. Jackson also had his best season as a pro, averaging 18.8 points per game and 6.2 assists.

Detroit will miss the scoring from Jackson, the team leader in points per game. Jackson also created scoring opportunities for other players. His ability to get to the basket freed up shots for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope on the wing or Tobias Harris for a cut to the basket.

What may be most critical in this injury is how it affects Andre Drummond. The Jackson-to-Drummond alley-oop connection was a key cog of the Pistons’ offense. At least four or more points of Drummond’s 16.2 average came from lobs that Jackson sent his way. Rumors are Drummond has improved his offensive ability. Detroit will need that this season.

The starter’s absence will also give free agent acquisition Ish Smith the opportunity to have a starter’s role. Detroit signed him to a three-year contract this past summer. Smith has career averages of 5.8 points per game, 3.3 assists per game to go with 1.2 turnovers.

Smith posted career-highs of 14.7 points per game and 7.0 assists with the 76ers last year. Those are good numbers for a 10-win Philadelphia team. However, Smith will need to improve his play for this Pistons team to climb the Eastern Conference ladder. He has only played in 10 career playoff games, and his last appearance was during the 2012-13 season with Milwaukee.

Detroit will depend heavily on Harris and Marcus Morris. They will also need improved play from Stanley Johnson. These three will look to fill the scoring void left by Jackson’s injury.

Van Gundy also came out and said they are not looking to sign anyone or to make a trade. The team’s roster is already quite full, and they are having a final roster spot played out between Ray McCallum, Jr. and Lorenzo Brown. Both are point guards.

Detroit’s first preseason game is Thursday, Oct. 6 at the Brooklyn Nets. Their first regular season game is at the Toronto Raptors on Oct. 26.