Preview: San Antonio Spurs vs. Detroit Pistons – Game #82

The San Antonio Spurs will play their final game of the 2023-24 NBA campaign on Sunday afternoon versus the Detroit Pistons at the Frost Bank Center. The Spurs have a record of 21-60, which is tied with the Portland Trail Blazers for the worst record in the Western Conference. At 14-67, the Pistons have the worst record in the entire NBA.

Sadly, the big news for the Spurs is that Victor Wembanyama won’t play against the Pistons. The star rookie played 37 minutes against the Denver Nuggets so the coaching staff has decided to sit him for the final game of the season. In that contest versus the Nuggets, Wembanyama ended on a high note of 34 points, 12 rebounds, five assists and two blocks. He hit 12-of-27 shots from the field, 5-of-12 three-point attempts and 5-of-7 free throws. Wembanyama also had a lot of teammates play well in San Antonio’s surprising 121-120 victory over Denver (see the Grades).

The Spurs played some of their best basketball games at the end of the season. In their last ten games, the Silver and Black have a record of 6-4.

The Pistons, on the other hand, have lost six of their last seven games. That said, they actually won their most recent game. Going up against a Dallas Mavericks squad that was sitting their best players, Detroit notched a 107-89 victory.

San Antonio Spurs Injury Update

Victor Wembanyama isn’t the only player sitting out the final game for the Spurs. San Antonio will also be without Devin Vassell, Jeremy Sochan, Keldon Johnson, Malaki Branham, Cedi Osman, Dominick Barlow and Charles Bassey. 

Of the active players, the leading scorers for the Spurs are Zach Collins (11.2 points per game) and Tre Jones (10.0 points).

San Antonio Spurs Starting Lineup

With so many players on the sidelines, it’s impossible to know exactly what head coach Gregg Popovich will do. However, the most likely starting five for the Spurs is Tre Jones at point guard, Blake Wesley at shooting guard, Julian Champagnie at small forward, Sandro Mamukelashvili at power forward and Zach Collins at center.

Off the bench, expect to see Devonte’ Graham, Sidy Cissoko and David Duke Jr. RaiQuan Gray and Jamaree Bouyea will also likely see minutes.

Betting Guide: Spurs vs. Pistons

The over/under is 213.5 points and the Spurs are favored by 5.5 points. Why are the Spurs favored despite being without Victor Wembanyama and all the others? It’s because the Pistons are not only a bad team but they’ll be sitting a lot of their key players with hopes of finishing with the worst record in the league. With neither team taking this game super seriously, the smart money is on the under.