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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Wednesday, October 30th (All times Eastern)

Washington Wizards (0-0) at Detroit Pistons (0-0), 7:30 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - A pair of teams with plenty of optimism this season get together Wednesday, as the Detroit Pistons and Washington Wizards kick off the new campaign from The Palace of Auburn Hills.

The Pistons will boast a new coach, new free-agent prize, new borderline All- Star point guard and two returning legends, one on the court and one on the sideline.

Mo Cheeks earned his third different head coaching gig after President of Basketball Operations, Joe Dumars, canned Lawrence Frank in the offseason. Cheeks has a career mark of 284-286 and was recently an assistant for the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Josh Smith was considered by most to be the second-best free agent on the market after Dwight Howard. Smith, a versatile, but enigmatic forward, inked a four-year, $54 million deal to complete a long, athletic front court.

"I didn't have any other options. This is the team I wanted to play for, so everything else I wasn't worried about," said Smith.

Brandon Jennings was acquired in a trade for Brandon Knight, who played admirably in two seasons with the Pistons. Jennings got three years, $24 million from Detroit to try and get the Pistons to the postseason.

"Things that I can bring to the table - just a lot of energy, of course I want to win, I've helped the Bucks get to the playoffs twice already," Jennings noted. "So, I just want to bring that winning mentality back into Detroit again."

Chauncey Billups is back with the Pistons after he won the Finals MVP in their title run of '04.

Rasheed Wallace, who also helped the Pistons win a world title in 2004, retired after an injury-plagued season with the New York Knicks. Cheeks brought him on board to be an assistant coach.

Washington hopes to build off a strong second half from last season and, like the Pistons, is hoping to capture a playoff berth. The first part of 2012-13 was the 5-28 start, which included a 12-game losing streak to begin the campaign.

The second part was the 24-25 finish. After missing the first two months of the season with an odd left knee injury, Wizards star John Wall came back and led the team toward respectability. He hopes this season will be special.

"Yeah, I feel like the pressure is a lot more," Wall said during media day. "I embrace it. I love pressure."

The Wizards received the third pick in the NBA draft and tabbed Georgetown forward Otto Porter, Jr. Porter fills a big need at the small-forward spot and defensively, he can be a problem with his huge wingspan.

Bradley Beal, Nene and Kevin Seraphin give Washington a formidable lineup and the recent addition of Marcin Gortat from the Phoenix Suns should ease the burden Emeka Okafor's absence would have caused. Okafor, who has a serious neck injury, was sent to Phoenix for Gortat.

The Wizards lost all four matchups with Detroit last season and are only 3-16 in the previous 19 meetings between the clubs. Washington has dropped three in a row, 10 of 11 and 20 of the past 25 visits to The Palace.

10/30 10:13:26 ET

Other Stories

TV
  • NCAA: Division II Championship: Indiana (Pa.) vs. Florida Southern

    Today at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NCAAT: Louisville v. Michigan State

    Tomorrow at 2:20 am on WRAL-TV

  • NCAAT: Duke v. Gonzaga

    Tomorrow at 5:05 pm on WRAL-TV

Scoreboard
Local
Final
WAS 110
CHA 107
Final
LOU 75
NCSU 65
Final
DUKE 63
UTAH 57
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
ATL
 
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
NJD
 
Final
ATL 4
BOS 2
Final
STL 5
NYM 4
Final
PHI 0
NYY 10
Final
MIN 2
PIT 4
Final
WAS 1
STL 1
4th
BAL 0
TAM 0
 
Final
TOR 4
DET 1
Final
CHC 6
CWS 3
Final
OAK 7
TEX 6
Final
ANA 2
ARI 7
Final
ARI 3
CLE 2
6:05pm Friday
HOU 0
MIA 0
 
Final
KAN 5
SEA 1
Final
SDP 7
COL 5
Final
CIN 6
MIL 8
Final
LOS 4
SFG 8
1:05pm Today
NYY
BAL
 
1:05pm Today
TAM
BOS
 
1:05pm Today
MIA
HOU
 
1:05pm Today
MIN
PHI
 
1:05pm Today
DET
STL
 
1:05pm Today
PIT
TOR
 
1:07pm Today
TOR
ATL
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
WAS
 
4:05pm Today
CIN
CHC
 
4:05pm Today
MIL
CLE
 
4:05pm Today
CHC
COL
 
4:05pm Today
CWS
OAK
 
4:05pm Today
TEX
SDP
 
4:05pm Today
SEA
SFG
 
4:10pm Today
ARI
KAN
 
4:10pm Today
ANA
LOS
 
Final
WAS 110
CHA 107
Final
ORL 97
DET 111
Final
PHI 98
LAC 119
Final
NYK 92
BOS 96
Final
BRK 106
CLE 98
Final
TOR 94
LAL 83
Final
ATL 99
MIA 86
Final
MEM 84
GSW 107
Final
HOU 120
MIN 110
Final
NOP 102
SAC 88
Final
SAN 94
DAL 76
Final
DEN 107
UTA 91
Final
PHO 81
POR 87
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
ATL
 
8:00pm Tonight
CHI
NYK
 
8:30pm Tonight
MIL
GSW
 
9:00pm Tonight
UTA
OKC
 
10:00pm Tonight
POR
DEN
 
Final
GONZ 74
UCLA 62
Final
LOU 75
NCSU 65
Final
DUKE 63
UTAH 57
Final
NARZ 74
KSU 73
Final
OKLA 58
MSU 62
6:09pm Tonight
WISC
ARZ
 
7:30pm Tonight
YALE
CAN
 
8:49pm Tonight
KENT
ND
 
Final
MIN 4
CAL 2
Final
CHI 2
CLB 5
Final
EDM 4
DAL 0
12:30pm Today
WAS
NAS
 
1:00pm Today
NYI
ANA
 
1:00pm Today
PIT
ARI
 
1:00pm Today
BOS
NYR
 
1:00pm Today
PHI
SJS
 
2:00pm Today
DET
TAM
 
7:00pm Tonight
MON
FLA
 
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
NJD
 
7:00pm Tonight
TOR
OTT
 
8:00pm Tonight
STL
CLB
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
LOS
 
9:00pm Tonight
COL
BUF
 
10:00pm Tonight
VAN
DAL