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4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST4:00 UAE (+1)01:0019:00 ET6:00 PM CTNaN:� , December 3, 2018
Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, Michigan  Attendance: 14,372

Thunder-Pistons Preview

According to STATS
According to STATS

Oklahoma City Thunder at Detroit Pistons

  1. Oklahoma City has won two of its last three versus Detroit, including an away win last season. The Thunder made 14 threes in that game, and have gone 16-1 (.941) when making at least that many threes since last season. Only Indiana (11-0) has a better record in such games in that span (min. 10 games).
  2. The Thunder have won four of their last five games overall, but have lost two of their last four road games. They won their most recent road game, 123-95, beating Golden State in Oakland for only the second time since 2014-15.
  3. The Pistons have won five games in a row, tied with the Nuggets for the second-longest active win streak in the NBA (Toronto -- 8). They have won six in a row at home -- the team has not won seven straight in Detroit since 2007-08.
  4. Dennis Schroder posted a +20 plus/minus last game, his sixth game of +20 or better this season. The Thunder have gone 11-1 (.917) in Schroder's positive plus/minus games and have gone 10-0 when he shoots over 40.0 percent.
  5. Blake Griffin has totaled 497 points and 102 assists through 20 games this season. He is the first Piston to record 450-plus points and 100-plus assists through 20 player games in a season since Jerry Stackhouse in 2001-02. The only other Piston to pull it off in the last 35 years is Grant Hill in 1999-00.
  6. After opening up 4-5 (.444), the Pistons have gone 9-2 (.818) since November 7, the best record in the NBA in that span. The Thunder have allowed 99.5 points per game in that span -- they are the only team holding foes under 100 points per game since November 7.

Dwane Casey believes the Detroit Pistons still have plenty of room for improvement.

In terms of wins and losses, the Pistons can complete a perfect home stand with a victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday. Detroit has won the first five games of the six-game stretch at Little Caesars Arena, including a 111-102 triumph over Golden State on Saturday.

The Pistons hit the 20-game mark at 13-7 under Casey, the former Toronto coach and reigning Coach of the Year, despite spotty shooting. They rank 29th in field-goal percentage (43.8), ahead of only Miami, and 26th in 3-point percentage (32.9).

"Right now, we're healthy and guys are playing with a lot of energy, playing together, playing with a purpose," he said. "The greatest thing about it is I don't think we're near where we can get to if we stay together and keep doing the things we need to offensively and defensively. We shot what, 44 percent and still won (against the Warriors 3/4? And 34 percent from the three. We can do better. Once our shooting starts to come around, that's the next step in our growth."

Detroit's Big Three -- Blake Griffin, Andre Drummond and Reggie Jackson -- all played major roles in its latest victory. Griffin had 26 points, six rebounds and five assists, Drummond contributed 16 points, 19 rebounds and three steals and Jackson added 17 points and five assists.

The Pistons' bench was once again highly productive. The second unit produced 40 points and has averaged 45.7 points over the last three games.

"They set the tone for the rest of the game," Griffin said. "When both units are playing like that, it makes it tough to beat us."

Casey has settled on a 10-man rotation and all the pieces are fitting.

"That is so important that guys are understanding their roles, that guys are playing their roles, accepting the role, embracing it and being the MVP in their role, I think that's so important," he said. "Understanding that it is a team game, it's not about one player, everybody's got to do their job whether if it's screening, spacing, passing the ball, defending, whatever it is just make sure you do your job on each possession."

The Thunder (14-7) have gone 14-3 after a 0-4 streak. In its last outing, Oklahoma City completed a 3-1 home stand with a 124-109 victory over Atlanta on Friday.

It made a season-high 18 3-pointers against the Hawks while shooting 52.3 percent overall and 43.9 percent from long range. The defense forced 21 turnovers, leading to 31 points.

"It's just OKC basketball," forward Patrick Patterson told the team's website. "Playing great defense, getting stops, finishing plays with rebounds and coming down on the offensive side trying to get early baskets in transition and guys hitting shots and looking for one another."

The Thunder's outside barrage on Friday was a welcome sight, considering that could be considered their biggest weakness. Oklahoma City ranks last in 3-point shooting percentage (31.5).

It now plays five of the next six games on the road. The Thunder also face non-conference opponents Brooklyn and Chicago this week.

Updated December 2, 2018

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