2023 Detroit Pistons Predictions with Futures Odds and Expert NBA Picks
The Pistons are coming off their worst campaign since 1980, finishing with just 17 wins last season. Cade Cunningham played just 12 games before being ruled out for the season, and his return, in addition to the arrival of Ausar Thompson, has the Pistons faithful optimistic their team is trending in the right direction. Can the Pistons climb out of the basement and make a surprise run in the play-in tournament?
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Detroit Pistons Offseason Recap
The Pistons were active in the offseason, which was expected after their woeful 2022-23 season. They fired head coach Dwayne Casey on the final day of the regular season, opting to replace him with Monty Williams. It will be a new challenge for Williams, who will have a very different role as head coach compared to his 4-year tenure with the Suns. Phoenix was a developed team, filled with bonafide superstars. On the other hand, the Pistons have plenty of room to grow. And other than Bojan Bogdanovic, their entire starting lineup is 22 years old or younger. Williams will be trusted with the development of these young studs, which will be the top priority this season.
The Pistons made headlines when they drafted Ausar Thompson with the 5th overall pick, right after his brother Amen, who went 4th overall. They were unlucky to find themselves in the 5th position after finishing dead last in the league, but Thompson is still a fantastic talent who will slot directly into the starting lineup.
In addition, they also picked up Joe Harris and Monte Morris, who will be solid veteran backups, who can not only fill in if the young guns go down but can provide valuable minutes and leadership throughout the season. They sport the youngest roster in the league at an average age of just 23.4 years old and will be eager to see what a healthy lineup can do in a very competitive Eastern Conference.
Detroit Pistons Season Expectations
There are very limited expectations for the Pistons. Their 27.5-game win total is the second lowest in the league, and it is very clear what oddsmakers, and the public, think this team will do. The budding young core in Detroit will certainly blossom in the coming years, but anything resembling a playoff appearance feels like a fantasy. The 8th place seed in the East will probably be someone like the Raptors or Hawks, and it is very difficult to imagine the Pistons being able to keep pace over a full 82 game season. If Cunningham, Jaden Ivey, and Jalen Duren can continue their development, and show improvements from last season, the sky's the limit. However, meaningful late season basketball feels out of reach for the Pistons. They lack the proven playmakers to outlast the top contenders, and the lack of size inside combined with their tendency to turn the ball over will result in several heavy defeats. The great equalizer in the NBA is the 3 ball. And when Bogdanovic heats up, the Pistons can pull off upsets, but those nights will be too few and far between.
Detroit Pistons Schedule Breakdown
The Pistons start off the season with plenty of short home stands and road trips, as their first 3 game streak either home or away doesn't come until December. This could work in the Pistons favor, as they will avoid digging themselves into a morale hole early in the season, which will allow the young men to succeed. In March, they have a span of 9 home games sandwiching a single road contest, before they head on the road for 9 of their final 11 games.
Detroit Pistons Odds
The Pistons have understandably long odds to make any kind of a splash this season, as they are coming in at +50000 to win the title, and a whopping +1100 to qualify for the postseason at all. Unless you are banking on an unlikely Pistons title run, you’ll have to look elsewhere for a Pistons bet. Their win total of 27.5 wins is an appealing market to explore, and a sprinkle on 30+ wins at +170 or 35+ at +600 could be quite intriguing for the avid Pistons bettors.
In the in-season tournament, the Pistons got a kind draw with the 76ers, Cavaliers, Hawks, and Pacers joining them in Group A, but are still +1600 to win the group, and +7500 to take home the trophy. There’s a very small sample size for the group stage, and a punt on +1600 for the Pistons to get an upset or two is not the worst idea in the world. However, regardless of your stance on the Pistons, the win total market is the best bet this regular season.
2023-34 Season Predictions
The Pistons unproven young core has made this team difficult to gauge, but I expect a solid season for Detroit. Cunningham has shown flashes of his brilliance throughout his short career. And the combination of talented youngsters with veteran backups will allow the Pistons to deal with whatever the league throws at them. This team feels like a 32-win team to me, so I’ll be steering clear of their 27.5 win total and instead be hammering 30+ wins at +170. This is much better value for a season long bet, and we only get burned if the Pistons finish with exactly 28 or 29 wins. That has only happened 6 times in their 82-year history. At +170 odds, this is a great bet to sit back, and root for Detroit all season long.
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