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Pistons won’t fire John Kuester, but they will fine Richard Hamilton, Chris Wilcox, Austin Daye and Rodney Stuckey

Ken Berger of CBS Sports:

Richard Hamilton and Chris Wilcox have been fined for missing shootaround without an excuse, but the Pistons are not planning a coaching change in the wake of the perceived mutiny against John Kuester, a person with knowledge of the situation told CBSSports.com Saturday.

The team engaged in lengthy organizational meetings Saturday to discuss the latest meltdown in a season that has spiraled out of control. Though sources are downplaying a significant rebellion against Kuester, a proposal to buy out Hamilton — who had another in a series of confrontations with Kuester recently — will be presented to ownership before the March 1 deadline for him to be eligible for another team’s playoff roster. The chances of a buyout for Hamilton, however, are "slim," a source said, given that he has two years left on his contract.

Hamilton and Wilcox flew back to Detroit with the team after the Pistons — with only six available players — lost to the Sixers in Philadelphia. Both players are expected to be available Saturday night against Utah, but whether or not they play will be a "coaching decision," the source said.

Tracy McGrady, Tayshaun Prince, and Ben Wallace also missed shootaround Friday prior to the Sixers game, but all three had legitimate excuses, the person said. The Pistons’ training staff confirmed to management that McGrady and Prince had been sick. Wallace is dealing with the sudden terminal illness of a close family member, the source said.

Austin Daye and Rodney Stuckey were late for shootaround, missing the team bus and catching a cab, the source said. They were fined for being late.

I don’t really buy the other players’ excuses, especially because there are reports that the Pistons planned a shootaround boycott last week. I’m sorry to hear to hear about Ben Wallace’s family member, and I mean that. Dealing with that affects everyone in different ways, and if he needed to miss games or practices to handle the situation, I’d have no problem with that. But he was last night’s 76ers game. At that point, I think it’s fair to question

A hypothetical reason Tracy McGrady, Tayshaun Prince and Wallace avoided fines: they were granted permission to miss the shootaround before John Kuester realized some of his players were staging a protest. If that were the case, and the Pistons fined those players, I think the NBA Players Association could build a strong case to appeal the fines. The Pistons can’t approve a player missing practice then fine him for it.


  • Feb 26, 20115:01 pm
    by Keith P.


    There are too many conflicting reports as to what the heck is happening. Seems way too unlikely for all this to be a coincidence though.

    Either way, this better be the wake-up call to Joe that we need to start shaking everything up (Coaches and Players) as much as possible this offseason.

  • Feb 26, 20116:46 pm
    by bg8


    i personally think its a team revolt

    tmac and prince, being the wily vets they are, fake their illness (upset stomach,headache are illness you could easily fake) but since they are the wily vets, they tell management that they are sick so they won’t have to be at shootaround. in reality, they’re perfectly fine, and didn’t wanna show up and are part of the revolt

    rip and wilcox just didn’t care. they’re taking the revolt to the max

    daye and stuckey missing the bus/oversleeping on the same day that rip/wilcox no show, tmac/prince getting sick, i think it just too big of a coincidence for it not to be predetermine

    wallace . . . .

  • Feb 26, 201110:43 pm
    by Larry


    Hmnn….Suddenly “sources” are leaking to the national media that Hamilton treated Kuester with utter contempt and the mutiny was “overblown.”  Well, here’s my contempt– as a ticket buying fan the organization will not offer an official version of where things stand.  It is very significant that there has been no show of unity.  The coach says he is ready to move on.  From everyone else– no comment.  And no reason to pull for these guys, let alone pay to see them play.  It’s reached a point where no one gets the benefit of the doubt, as far as I am concerned because they have all basically given the public the finger.

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