Just when Maurice Cheeks had apparently stopped considering changes to his starting lineup, he pulled a surprise. The Pistons’ recent run of improved play seemed to bring about a stretch of stability, but Wednesday Cheeks announced Kyle Singler would start at shooting guard against the Orlando Magic. The move dropped rookie Kentavious Caldwell-Pope to the second unit. Caldwell-Pope played eight minutes against the Miami Heat on Monday, and Cheeks wasn’t hinting if the move will be longterm. The defensive-minded Caldwell-Pope had trouble guarding former Piston and current Magic guard Arron Afflalo in their previous matchups, and this is as proactive a move as Cheeks has made this season, with the Pistons a game out of the eighth and final playoff spot. Singler is a couple inches taller than Caldwell-Pope, and perhaps provides a different challenge for Afflalo defensively. “It’s a change for right now because we play different guys I may feel KCP is a better matchup for,” Cheeks said. “I just think I want Kyle for Afflalo because the last two times we were here they jumped out on us pretty good and a lot of it was due to Afflalo.” Singler had 11 pointers on 3-of-5 shooting in Wednesday’s 112-98 loss to the Magic. Cheeks said this was just one of the lineup changes he’d been thinking about in recent weeks but not the definitive one. He’s certain it’ll bother a competitive rookie like Caldwell-Pope, but isn’t concerned about him sulking because he’ll still receive playing time. “Not really worried about it or whatever. Just learn from this,” Caldwell-Pope said.
Pistons' Kyle Singler gets the start against Magic
Detroit News | Feb 6