Detroit Pistons, Killian Hayes Show Growth in Win Over Dallas Mavericks


Is this Killian Hayes here to stay?

Is Killian Hayes starting to figure things out for the Detroit Pistons? After a molasses in winter slow start to the season, Hayes is finally looking like the player observers thought he could be.

Hayes is averaging about fourteen points, seven assists and four rebounds his last five games. During that span he’s shooting 50% from the field and 35% from three, while also operating as the teams best facilitator.

I want to believe in Hayes but he’s shown signs of life before, only to prove fools gold. In year three he was expected to anchor the bench and aimed to be a defensive leader.

But confidence, or a lack of, has seemed to be the reason for his struggles early. It has left many supporters scratching their heads because Hayes has been given every opportunity to succeed, including the full confidence of the organization.

Confidence is Key

When pressed on figuring out the issue, Killian Hayes said he believes he’s figured things out. And, that confidence was at the center of it all.

After helping to lead the Pistons to a win over Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks, coach Dwane Casey echoed the same sentiments.

“He’s very confident right now,” Casey said. For us, if Killian defends the way he defends, quarterbacks the team, makes the right read and then secondarily makes shots, that’s the last thing on the list. We have so many players that need his help, and Killian is one of our best pick-and-roll players at making decisions and making reads. He did those three simple things tonight for us.”

If the recent trends are correct, it’s safe to believe in Killian Hayes. In the absence of Cade Cunningham, he has stepped up his play offensively. But more importantly he’s looking like the best perimeter defender again.

“In the fourth quarter we were up about seven they came back and tied it and we didn’t fold,” Hayes said. “Overtime we stayed strong, played our defense and we hit the shot. We deserved that when we played well for a while, it feels good.”

Pistons Bounce Back Verse Mavs

The Detroit Pistons 131-125 win over the Dallas Mavericks helped get the nasty taste of a thirty point loss washed away quickly. Bojan Bogdanovic led the Pistons in scoring with thirty points and Marvin Bagley chipped in with 19 points and thirteen rebounds.

The Pistons won almost every team stat this game including rebounding 52-30, and points in the paint 54-44.

Some observers felt the Pistons were making strides, before seeing them get clubbed by the New York Knicks.

Dwane Casey thought the thirty point drubbing was more an expected letdown after a tough west coast trip, rather than an indication of the teams progress.

Lack of defensive energy and consistency has been a bigger issue than losing at this stage. Many fans expected the team to struggle in that department. But expected to see growth, competitiveness and fight from its core players. Despite the injuries to many core players.

One player who has come under heavy scrutiny due to up and down play is Killian Hayes. The first draft pick of Troy Weavers tenure as Detroit Pistons general manager.

But since an abysmal start to the season, he has been a main catalyst for why the Pistons have a .500 record over the last 6 games. Including leading the Pistons in overtime scoring (seven points) on the way to the victory.

Hayes’ resurgence and the return of Marvin Bagley from injury has lifted this team to the level of consistent competitiveness promised before the season started.

What’s Next

The Pistons battle Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies Sunday, December 4 at 6PM.

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Photo Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports