For the Detroit Pistons to make a late-season push for the playoffs, they need several key players to step up their play.
After losing six of their last seven games, the Pistons are now 12 games below .500 and are four games in the loss column behind the Atlanta Hawks for the No. 8 seed in the Eastern Conference. In no way are they out of the playoff race, but they need to turn things around sooner rather than later.
According to MLive.com, owner Tom Gore "put down a playoff mandate" before this season began, which is in line with the major acquisitions that the team made in the offseason. It would also seem to be the biggest factor in the midseason firing of first-year coach Maurice Cheeks.
Gore expects his team to be in the playoffs, and general manager Joe Dumars is feeling that pressure. Which players need to play their best basketball of the season in order for the Pistons to make the postseason?
*All statistics compiled from NBA.com and updated as of March 1 unless otherwise noted.