The Pistons' next road game is Sunday afternoon in Atlanta. There's a good chance they will be visiting Georgia again in late April when the playoffs begin.
Sure, there's four months to go in the regular season but the way the Eastern Conference is shaping up, the Pistons and Hawks look like the two best teams that won't win their divisions. The Pistons have spotted Cleveland such a big lead that they may never catch up, unless LeBron James gets injured for a significant stretch.
Boston is running away with the Atlantic Division and will almost certainly be the top seed again. Orlando is quietly off to a solid start - the Magic just ripped apart San Antonio in a national TV game Thursday - and look like the class of its division.
Some people underestimated the Hawks during the preseason, thinking they might regress after the Josh Smith contract debacle this summer. But the Hawks weren't a fluke. They have a very good foundation, with Smith, Al Horford and Joe Johnson as their centerpieces.
Remember all the problems the Celtics had with the Hawks in the first round last season? They could very well be the Pistons' headaches in the opening round this season. And even if the Pistons get past them, they'd have to unseat the Celtics just to make the conference finals for a seventh straight year.
Those bad losses the Pistons had in the first seven weeks of the season, mostly a product of the Allen Iverson trade, could come back to haunt them four months from now.