Will Bynum had one of his best outings of the season against the Rockets on Sunday: 12 points and 11 assists. (Clarence Tabb Jr./The Detroit News)
Will Bynum was asked the other day what number he liked better after Sunday's victory over Houston.
Was it the 11 assists he recorded against the Rockets or the one turnover?
"The one turnover," he said.
Good answer. That's the number coach John Kuester also loved. But Kuester didn't mind the 11 assists, either.
As a matter of fact, the passing, ball management and defense Bynum showed against Houston made for a great all-around night for Bynum.
"That was outstanding," Kuester said. "But guarding a player like (Houston's Aaron) Brooks, who as quick a they come in our league, I was very pleased with the way Will played."
Bothered by a left ankle sprain that had been nagging for weeks, Bynum said he's felt better the last week.
If that's the case, it couldn't have come at a better time for Bynum or the Pistons.
Rodney Stuckey's status remains uncertain for the immediate future. So Bynum likely will continue to earn significant playing time, and have the chance to show he's capable of whatever role the Pistons need.
A restricted free agent this summer, Bynum's also eager to show other teams what he's capable of. Starting and getting more minutes helps.
"I can control the game and pace; where I'm going and the pace of my teammates," Bynum said of starting. "It's more comfortable for me. I don't have to look for the home-run play."
All that Jazz
Few teams have given the Pistons as many problems in recent seasons as the Jazz.
Utah has won the last nine meetings, including the last four at The Palace.
When did the Pistons last defeat the Jazz? March 13, 2005.
"They always play hard and run their stuff right and they stick to their game plan, no matter what," Tayshaun Prince said of the Jazz.
Seeded fourth in the Western Conference through Monday, the Jazz (40-22) appear set for another strong playoff run.
"We've had some tough matchups with them, some overtime games, but they stick with it," Prince said. "They're always tough to beat.
"Of course (it eats at you). You just have to continue to stay with the same mind-set and continue to do the things you need to do."
Isn't it strange that Jonas Jerebko could be playing better in the NBA this season than he ever did in Europe?
Jerebko thinks there might be a reason why.
In Europe, said Jerebko, "The game is so much more compact. It's more wide (open) here and you can do a lot more. I've grown in every aspect of the game (here)."
Jerebko said 7-footers stay in the lane in Europe, waiting for opponents to drive to the basket.
The NBA game is more open.
"You have to be on the move, it's an up-and-down game, and that shows my skills," he said.
Former Pistons center Mehmet Okur is averaging 24 points his last two games against the Pistons.
More than that, since leaving the Pistons, Okur has established himself as one of the premier players in the league.
"No question we saw what he was able to do when he was here," Prince said of Okur. "He was a spark plug off the bench in the championship run. He showed a lot more in the post at that time.
"He's definitely one of those guys you have to respect. He's one of the more underrated guys in our league."
When Jonas Jerebko was named the Eastern Conference's rookie of the month for February, he became the fifth Pistons player in team history to receive the honor.
Passing the test
When the Pistons record at least 20 assists in a game, they have a better chance of winning. Here's their records in accordance to their assists:
25-plus assists: 6-3
20-plus assists: 5-11
Less than 20 assists: 11-27