This spring, the Pistons will not make the playoffs for the third consecutive season – the first time that’s happened since the mid -1990s. It pains me to write it, but by the next the Pistons enter the postseason it will have been (at least) five years since their last playoff win in 2008.

While I am a diehard Pistons fan, even I don’t see this current roster making it to the 2012 playoffs.

Yes, the 2011-12 season is still technically young. But remember that there’s only 66 games. And Detroit has already dug itself a huge hole by starting out with a 2-8 record. And it doesn’t matter the reasons – injuries, abbreviated training camps, new coaching systems, strength of schedule – it is what it is.

And as it currently stands, the Pistons are among the worst teams in the NBA by several metrics.

They are by far the worst scoring team – scoring just a paltry 82.8 points per game. For a reference point, an NBA team hasn’t had such a low scoring average since the last lockout-shortened season in 1998-99 season when the Chicago Bulls managed just 81.9 points per game (via Basketball Reference).

They are also the second worst rebounding team in the league, grabbing just 37.6 boards a game (they were dead last during the previous season).

I could go on, but here are the quick facts (via Basketball Reference). The Pistons rank:

–30th in turnover percentage
–28th overall in defensive rating
–29th overall in offensive rating
–30th in margin of victory
–27th in opponent field goal percentage
–30th in average home attendance

So, in short, it’s not looking good.

Now, back to the playoffs. Historically, to achieve the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference requires about 37-42 victories during a normal season. For this abbreviated 66-game schedule, that translates to 30-34 wins.

For the Pistons to get to 30 wins, they’d have to win 28 of their remaining 56 games. At first glance that doesn’t sound all that hard, but that means Detroit would have to go .500 the rest of the way to even have a chance at sniffing the postseason.

And that’s a tall task considering the Pistons haven’t had an overall record above .500 since 2008 when they won 64 games as a powerhouse in the East with All-Star point guard Chauncey Billups leading the way.

Making matters worse, 30 wins is at the low end of estimates. To realistically have a shot at the postseason, Detroit would have to win 34 games. That means this squad would all of a sudden have to starting winning games at a .57 clip to end up at 34-32. Again, too tall a task.

The playoffs are essentially out. So now what? In my next article, I’ll describe five things the Pistons should do – or not do – this season since the playoffs are sadly already out of the question.

Written by Ryan McNeill via FeedCrossing
Written by FeedCrossing, Content News Source (Archive/RSS)

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