Pistons Update: At Least the Spartans are Still Good

Posted: December 3, 2010 by sabetodo in Professional

By Andrew Bolton | Great Lakes Hoops

The Pistons, after starting the season 0-5, had fought back to 5-8. They were in Dallas for a tough road game against a championship contender. They were up by double digits in the third period and playing good basketball. Then…

Dirk Nowitzki went thermonuclear, finishing the game with 42 points, dragging the Mavs to an 88-84 win.

Game, set, season.

The Pistons would win against the Bucks (who are in worse shape than the Pistons, somehow, despite having a competent coach and deep roster), but then lose in humiliating fashion to Orlando and Miami. The Knicks also managed to get a win against the Pistons in Detroit in double overtime. The Pistons’ record stands at 6-13, and they are basically unwatchable at this point.

Allow me a brief (maybe) rant: These are the minutes played by Austin Daye in the last five games — 6, 4, 8, 0, 13. May I remind you that he was the STARTER AT THE BEGINNING OF THE SEASON! May I also point out that he is the MOST TALENTED PLAYER ON THE ROSTER! Sorry for the all caps, but I’m left to wonder what more Kuester needs to do before he is fired. This isn’t working. The players don’t like him. He starts Ben Wallace and Jason Maxiell, which means they’re playing 3-on-5 offensively. He can’t make adjustments in games to either keep them ahead or keep them in the game. He plays less-effective veterans when there are better players (in reality or potentially) available sitting on the bench. Joe, he needs to go. It’s not like you hate firing coaches (Rick Carlisle, who’s been okay in Dallas; Larry Brown, who needed to go; Michael Curry, who looks good compared to Kuester).

I try really hard to not be one of those people who call for a coach’s head, especially midseason. I think it’s a mistake, especially in basketball. In this case, I think it’s warranted, because I haven’t come to the worst part yet.

The worst part?

I honestly haven’t been watching. I never imagined myself voluntarily turning away from a Pistons game, or not even flipping to it in the first place. That’s what’s been happening. I can’t bring myself to watch a team I love play so terribly. It’s worse than being a Lions fan (right now), because they’ve never been good. I’ve seen the Pistons climb to the top in my lifetime. They should be good. They’re not. It hurts much more because of that.

I also love good basketball more than any one team, and the rest of the NBA is providing that. Let’s take a spin around the NBA and talk about some of the noteworthy teams and players:

–In the Point Guard Era, it’s becoming harder and harder to separate one’s self from the rest of the point guards in the league. Well, Russell Westbrook and Deron Williams are separating themselves. After the Hornets’ slide back to reality, Williams has firmly planted himself ahead of Chris Paul on the list of point guards. Chris’s first two seasons were unlike anything seen from a point guard in a long while, but Williams is better right now. His stats from the other night against Indiana: 24 points, 16 assists, 0 turnovers. The Jazz are 15-5 and haven’t missed a step with Al Jefferson in for Carlos Boozer, and it’s thanks to Williams.

Westbrook is becoming an MVP candidate.

–I purposely didn’t lead with Miami, because everyone leads with Miami. I love how they’ve struggled and blamed everyone else but themselves for it. I love the “sources” giving quotes to the media about the problems the players are having. I love Chris Bosh being exposed, LeBron and D-Wade being unable to be on the floor at the same time (even tonight, Spoelstra has one out when the other’s in), and the team thinking Joel Anthony at center will lead to “6 or 7 championships.”

Of course, they still have LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.

–Kobe has recently reverted to Gunner Mode, and the Lakers have responded with a four-game losing streak. Will this guy ever get it? Wait, haven’t we been asking that for several years now? And how many rings does he have, again? I don’t care for the Lakers, but I don’t ask stupid questions, either.

–The Spurs, Mavs, Jazz, Thunder, Lakers, and Hornets all look to be in contention for the Western Conference crown. The Spurs in particular look quite good. Tim Duncan, however, does not look like Tim Duncan anymore. He doesn’t have to be TD of old, however, because the Spurs have stealthily reloaded, with Tiago Splitter joining Dejuan Blair and George Hill to form a young core of really good players. Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili are still around, too, and they look better than ever.

–The Clippers are appointment viewing. Yes, they’re horrible, but Blake Griffin…I mean, have you ever seen anything like him? Young Amare Stoudemire maybe, but Blake is more refined even at this young age. I don’t know who to compare him to. Suggestions?

–I have to apologize to Darko Milicic, who has proven to be a pretty darn good player recently. My bad. I should’ve totally seen that coming.

–Brief college notes: Duke is really good, Kyrie Irving’s not bad, Kemba Walker is insane, Illinois is underrated, Syracuse is overrated, North Carolina will be a nonfactor until they learn to play defense, and Michigan’s guards will give teams trouble.

–Memo to the Pistons: please don’t take Jared Sullinger. He scares me. Too similar to Jason Maxiell for me. Take a true big man like Mason Plumlee.

Got a rant against the Pistons? Leave it in the comments.

Next Time: The Pistons trade for Darko Milicic.

  1. Jared Field says:

    I wanted Cousins.

    Now, Jared Sullinger? He’s going to be way, way, way better than J-Max.

    Granted, I think Daye is way soft, but at this point the Pistons should be playing all their young guys big minutes. We’re going to lose a bunch of games either way.

  2. SBell says:

    The Pistons actually played well defensively against Dirk, he just hit tough shot after tough shot over them.

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