The All-Star break is over and the stretch run has begun. The Detroit Pistons begin their final push for the playoffs with a a key home at home series against the Charlotte Bobcats. The Pistons are just one game behind the Bobcats for the eighth and final playoff spot. The winner of these two games, just before the trade deadline, could not only determine the fate of the Pistons season but also that if its key free agent acquisition.
If you believe that the Pistons are trying to make the playoffs, then you realize that winning the next two games will go along way in helping Detroit nail down a playoff spot. Winning could boost the Pistons playoff hopes and cause Joe Dumars to comb the trade market looking for ways to improve the roster. Losing could mean a fire sale that could include Josh Smith in a trade to Charlotte.
The blogosphere is buzzing with the possibility of Smith heading to Charlotte for Ben Gordon. The trade works because Smith fits a need for the Cats. But it also helps the Pistons correct the mistake of trading Ben Gordon and this years first round pick to create the cap space used to sign Smith. But the trade only really works if the Bobcats win and tighten their grip on the final playoff spot.
If the Pistons win they will likely refuse to trade Josh Smith to a team that is right behind them in the standings, especially considering acquiring Smith would improve Charlotte’s team.
This makes for a very interesting pair of games on Tuesday and Wednesday. And with the trade deadline looming on Thursday, fans will know the Pistons playoff fate sooner than later.