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Reply To: NBA • Friday Service Plays • 2/19/16

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Preview: Detroit At Washington

When: 7:00 PM ET, Friday, February 19, 2016
Where: Verizon Center, Washington, District of Columbia

The Detroit Pistons believe they have a team that can make the playoffs and do a little damage this spring and are adjusting the roster accordingly. New small forward Tobias Harris could be in uniform when the Pistons return from the All-Star break on Friday and visit the Washington Wizards.

Detroit made the first big move prior to Thursday’s trade deadline when it scooped up Harris from the Orlando Magic in exchange for forward Ersan Ilyasova and reserve point guard Brandon Jennings. “Tobias adds good versatility as a ball handler and scorer who can play both forward positions,” Pistons general manager Jeff Bower told reporters. “He also has good experience for a young player and will fit well with the young core we have assembled on our roster.” The Wizards got into the action just before the deadline and acquired forward Markieff Morris from the Phoenix Suns. The disgruntled big man was not with the team in time to enjoy a 103-89 victory over the Utah Jazz on Thursday.

TV: 7 p.m. ET, FSN Detroit, CSN Mid-Atlantic (Washington)

ABOUT THE PISTONS (27-27): Detroit went into the All-Star break with losses in three straight and six of eight to drop back to .500 and fall into ninth place in the East but evened out the roster a bit with the Harris deal. Jennings, who had been making his way back from an Achilles injury, was deemed expendable due to Reggie Jackson’s emergence as the floor leader while Ilyasova and fellow starting forward Marcus Morris occupied similar roles. Harris will slot into Ilyasova’s vacated starting forward spot but is versatile enough to play the small forward spot and guard opposing small forwards while stretching the floor with his shooting ability.

ABOUT THE WIZARDS (24-28): Morris has been available for months after demanding a trade in the offseason and further alienating himself from the Suns by throwing a towel at then-coach Jeff Hornacek – and earning a two-game suspension – and shoving guard Archie Goodwin during a game just before the break. Washington sent forwards Kris Humphries, DeJuan Blair and a protected first-round pick to the Suns to complete the deal. The Wizards dropped four of six heading into the All-Star break but looked sharp against the Jazz as Marcin Gortat (22 points, 10 rebounds) and John Wall (17 points, 11 assists) each recorded a double-double.


1. Detroit also acquired F Donatas Motiejunas and G Marcus Thornton from the Houston Rockets in exchange for a top-eight protected first-round draft pick and veteran C Joel Anthony.

2. Morris averaged 20.6 points and 7.6 rebounds in his final five games with Phoenix.

3. Washington has taken the last two meetings, including a 97-95 win at Detroit on Nov. 21.

PREDICTION: Pistons 115, Wizards 111