Pistons’ Cunningham: No Way Are We “2-26 Bad”

The Pistons are one loss away from tying the all-time single-season record for most losses in a row after dropping their 25th straight to the depleted Jazz on Thursday night.

Playing without Lauri Markkanen, Keyonte George, Jordan Clarkson, Talen Horton-Tucker and Omer Yurtseven, the Jazz defeated the Pistons 119-111, as Detroit’s woes off the bench and from beyond the arc continued. Still, Cade Cunningham believes the Pistons can turn it around with this group.

We’re not 2-26 bad,” Cunningham said (Twitter link via The Athletic’s James L. Edwards III. “No way are we that bad. So, yes, I think we can turn it around. I think we can play a much better brand of basketball — executing game plan, not turning it over, keeping your man in front of you. I was the head of that snake. This isn’t about the system. This is about the players and what we’re doing on the floor. Those three things aren’t about a system.

As Spotrac’s Keith Smith observes (Twitter link), the Pistons are not only just one game from tying the single-season record of 26 straight losses, they’re also three losses from tying the all-time longest losing streak, a record the Sixers hold from when they lost 28 straight across the 2014/15 and ’15/16 seasons.

It’s definitely on my mind,” Cunningham said of approaching the record (Twitter link via Omari Sankofa II of the Detroit Free Press. “That’s history that nobody wants to be a part of. We’re trying to build something that’s sustainable. It’s not like we’re just trying to win one game. We want to win multiple games.

Things are at a breaking point in Detroit. As captured by NBA on ESPN (YouTube link), Pistons fans erupted in “sell the team” chants during the game.

To their credit, coach Monty Williams and Cunningham both have taken full responsibility. For a coach in his first year with a team and a young player in what’s essentially his second NBA season, it’s telling that neither have pointed blame elsewhere.

I want to be careful with my words because this one hurts more than most of them,” Williams said (Twitter link via Sankofa). “A team that played last night gets 30 points off turnovers and rebounds. This one is unbelievably hard to understand how we can get outworked in those categories. That is absolutely on me.

The Pistons next play the Nets in back-to-back games before facing the Celtics and the Raptors. They have four chances to avoid taking sole possession of the worst losing streak in NBA history.

To be on the wrong side of history, nobody wants to be there,” Cunningham said (Twitter link via Sankofa). “That is definitely an extra edge that we have to have, and we should’ve won this game. We didn’t, so gotta come back next game and be locked in. I gotta come in and be locked in and more solid down the stretch.

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