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News@noon: Lions, Pistons and a mission to Mars

The Detroit News

Today is Monday, Oct. 24, 2016, and the Pistons are back in action with the season opener in Toronto. Before the games get underway, get caught up on the latest:

Rod Beard ranks the NBA teams from 1-30. Not surprisingly, the addition of Kevin Durant has vaulted Golden State into the No. 1 spot, while it looks like a long year for Brooklyn, which is No. 30. But where do the Pistons fall?

Andre Drummond

And for those who really love lists, Rod offers up his list of the top rookies, the top 5 breakout stars to watch and, of course, the top 5 players in the NBA.

Also, be sure to check out our new Pistons show, "The Backcourt" with Rod and John Niyo.

Here's what else we're covering today:

Justice in Flint

  • Attorney General Bill Schuette vowed at the Republican National Convention in mid-July that “justice is coming to Flint” after government agencies were blamed for the city’s water contamination crisis. As the case intensifies, attorneys for some government employees being investigated or charged are criticizing how Schuette, Flood and Arena are conducting their multimillion-dollar investigation.
  • As for those who are going to court, their lawyers want to move the venue of the trials to a different state, arguing the potential jury pool in Michigan has been tainted by “overwhelming and adverse publicity.”

Return of local control

  • Detroit voters next month will take a major step toward returning the state’s largest school district back to self-governance, but first they’ll have to choose seven winners from a list of 63 candidates. We do our best to break down the race for you

Michigan's mission to Mars

  • NASA’s first manned spaceship to Mars will be partially made in Michigan. The government agency’s new Space Launch System — a rocket set to ferry humans to the red planet in the 2030s — relies on dozens of Michigan suppliers that build everything from steering to components covers for harnesses and cables. But the most vital contributor from the Great Lakes state has a history rooted in the automotive industry.

What a turnaround

Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford throws a sidearm pass in the first quarter.

On the campaign trail

  •  With Election Day just 15 days off, Donald Trump was fighting to preserve his narrow path to the presidency in must-win Florida on Monday as Hillary Clinton tries to slam the door on her Republican opponent in New Hampshire.

Miked Up in Hell

  • In this week's episode, Mike Martinez and Mike Wayland discuss the new hardware in the self-driving Teslas. Later, auto critic Henry Payne joins the Mikes to talk about a recent trip to Hell, Michigan, to test drive the candidates for North American Car, Truck and Utility of the Year.

Detroit News at noon is a daily roundup of the most talked-about stories on detroitnews.com. For more anytime, like us on Facebook and follow us on TwitterInstagram (@detroitnews), Snapchat (Search for "Detroitnews") and LinkedIn