Pistons’ Ausar Thompson Off To Historic Start In NBA Career

Ausar Thompson, Pistons, NBA
NBA Analysis Network

The 2023-24 NBA regular season has not gotten off to the start the Detroit Pistons were hoping for. Injuries have decimated the lineup in the early going as veterans Bojan Bogdanovic, Monte Morris and Joe Harris are all sidelined with injuries. Center Jalen Duren has also missed time, playing in only eight of 12 games to this point.

As a result, the losses have quickly piled up in Detroit, as they are 2-10 out of the gate. There isn’t much to get excited about when watching the team right now, but there have been a handful of bright spots.

Arguably the brightest has been the performance of rookie Ausar Thompson. There were likely some Pistons fans disappointed when the team fell to No. 5 in the NBA Draft Lottery, but that disappointment has faded with the performance of Thompson.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Ausar Thompson, Detroit Pistons Updates

He has made his presence felt on the court since Day 1. A big reason that head coach Monty Williams wanted to insert him into the starting lineup was the impact that he could have defensively. Thus far, he has lived up to the billing.

Thompson has more than held his own as the Pistons’ No. 1 defender on the perimeter and has been a playmaker on that end of the court. His 39 steals and blocks are currently second in the NBA to only Anthony Davis of the Los Angeles Lakers.

Detroit came up short in their last game against the Atlanta Hawks, losing for the ninth game in a row, 126-120. However, Thompson had the best game of his young career, scoring 21 points with eight rebounds, three steals and two blocks.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Ausar Thompson, Detroit Pistons Updates

While there is certainly plenty to improve on, such as his shooting efficiency on jump shots, the start of his rookie NBA season has been productive. In fact, Thompson is accomplishing things that haven’t been done in nearly 50 years.

On the season, he is averaging 12 points, 10.3 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 1.9 blocks and 1.3 steals. The rebounding, assist, steal and block numbers haven’t been reached by a player in the first 12 games of their career since Bill Walton in 1974, per Brett Usher on X, formerly known as Twitter.

While the present has been rocky for the Pistons, the future at least seems bright. It is still early on, but Thompson looks like a keeper on the wing with the potential to flourish into a two-way start in the Motor City.

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About Kenneth Teape 3839 Articles
Kenneth Teape is an NBA Reporter for NBA Analysis Network. He covers all things across the league, including both news and editorial work. Make sure to follow Kenneth on Twitter at @teapester725.