60 games into the Detroit Pistons season, the team is back in position to fight for a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
What a difference a week makes. Last Monday the Detroit Pistons were facing a road game against the Cleveland Cavaliers after dropping a fifth-straight game by getting torched by Anthony Davis. That loss to the New Orleans Pelicans sent the Pistons two games below .500 and 2.5 games out of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
But the Pistons rose to the occasion to knock off the Cavs last Monday night and that has been a launching off point for their current four-game winning streak that has them two games above .500 and in a much better place in the conference’s playoff picture.
The surge over the last week has the Pistons in a three-way tie for the final two playoff spots in the East. With two games in hand, both the Chicago Bulls and Charlotte Hornets could pull ahead with wins in each of their next two games, or they could fall behind the Pistons by going 0-2 in their 59th and 60th games.
Through 60 Pistons games, the current Eastern Conference standings through play on February 28 are as follows:
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While the focus has to be on just getting in to the playoffs we can also look up the standings and see that the Pistons are just 2.5 games back of the Heat for seeding that would give the Pistons home court advantage in a first round playoff series. The Pistons have already shown that a 2.5 game deficit can be made up in one good week, but first things first.
The Pistons now enter an important two week stretch that will go a long way in determining whether or not they ultimately make the playoffs. With six of their next seven games on the road, the Pistons need to keep their heads above water or else face the final month of the regular season in chase mode.
It’s a tough stretch of games that starts with a road game against the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday but there is light at the end of the tunnel. The road-weary Pistons will return home for a season-high nine-game homestand.
Whether those nine games will be needed to play catch up or help cement the Pistons’ playoff position will be determined by what happens in these next seven games.