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The Pistons have only six players who respect their league and profession

Yesterday, Pistons fans were just a regional group downtrodden basketball lovers who collectively felt sorry for themselves watching a boring team that is not very good at basketball every night. We were so naive then.

Now, thanks to an unprecedented display of insubordination and unprofessionalism by seven players, Pistons fans can take solace in the fact that NBA watchers all over the country are sympathetic to the plight of this franchise.

It’s hard to take an objective look at the Pistons’ loss to Philly. So I’m not going to try. Tayshaun Prince, Rip Hamilton, Tracy McGrady, Ben Wallace, Chris Wilcox, Austin Daye and Rodney Stuckey have simply made it impossible to root for them. In the case of a player like Wilcox, for example, that’s no big loss. I’m not sure many people were enchanted with the fact that he’s only cared to use his immense physical gifts once every three weeks or so for most of his career anyway. But the others? They’ve lost something significant. Wallace, Prince and Hamilton are still champions, a fun memory to be sure. But how is anyone going to look back on that team anymore without a different perception of who those guys were now? Hamilton had already done the heavy lifting when it came to destroying his good name before his involvement in the Roundball Revolution. Prince was well on his way to getting into Hamilton territory, and this pushes it over the edge. Wallace, however, who has largely seemed to stay quiet and out of the fray this season? It’s a major disappointment that his name is caught up in this. It’s devastating actually. Daye and Stuckey? Two young players the team is counting on to continue to improve and become future cornerstones? It raises huge questions about their commitment and character. McGrady? After he re-invented himself as an unselfish player and earned praise as a calming locker room presence and leader for the younger players? All that goodwill is eviscerated.

There could be more to the story. There could be valid excuses in a few cases. But everything about this story, from the fact that it was leaked to reporters almost immediately, to the blasé actions of the players on the bench, to the fact that the coaching staff decided to in fact bench all seven names who were involved suggests it was not, as John Kuester suggested pregame, a matter of “perception and reality being two different things.” It was a calculated way to grab attention and power by a group of players who have an inflated sense of their own value.

And this isn’t meant as some type of spirited defense of Kuester. The man is a terrible coach. But the NBA is a league that continuously recycles and employs terrible coach after terrible coach. Being a terrible coach is not a crime in this league. Players have got coaches fired before, but never in such a public fashion that embarrasses themselves and their franchise. Kuester’s record is absolutely grounds for termination, but isn’t failing to show up to work because you don’t like your boss grounds for it as well? Many, many teams have dealt with playing for a coach they don’t like. Many of those coaches probably stayed on the job longer than the players preferred in an effort by management to try and make things work. Kuester hasn’t been at this job an obscenely long time, and with the team for sale, Pistons management probably had even more incentive to force the issue to try and make things work longer so they didn’t end up paying another salary to a guy to not coach them.

And even if Kuester had done a bang-up job coaching, guess what? This team is still terrible. Hamilton, Prince, McGrady and Wallace are past their primes. Wilcox never had a prime. Stuckey hasn’t improved one bit since he entered the league, and Daye could be on that same track. These are not good players. Earlier this season, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh pretty clearly didn’t like Erik Spoelstra, or at the very least blamed him for the team’s poor early-season performance. And guess what? Three of the guys with the biggest egos in the NBA who also all happen to be All-Star caliber players, showed up, played hard and got over it. Those three can do it, but Prince, Hamilton, McGrady, Stuckey, Wilcox, Wallace and Daye can’t?

This is not just an embarrassment for the organization and fans, it’s a league-wide embarrassment. Here’s what Phil Jackson told J.A. Adande of ESPN:

“I feel bad for John Kuester…it’s a black eye for the league…Detroit’s in disarray.”

The disarray part we’ve known for some time. But this situation, marginal players on a poor team rebelling against a coach in a way that no NBA team has ever rebelled against a coach, is serious. The Pistons are limited in what they can do. The trade deadline has passed. They don’t have an owner willing to spend money on buyouts. They don’t have roster spots to bring in new bodies so they can bench the offenders. But they simply can’t let these guys all walk back in tomorrow as if this issue is over and done with.

The six who are professionals, adults

Six guys had enough respect for their employer, for their league and for their teammates to show up to work today. They played hard. They didn’t play particularly well and were over-matched in depth, size, length and quickness against Philly. For three quarters, they kept it semi-close. A quarter of the total minutes DaJuan Summers has played this season came tonight. Charlie Villanueva had played 20 minutes or more only three times in the last 17 games before logging 36 tonight. Ben Gordon shot poorly, but also had the unenviable task of guarding much bigger shooting guards in Andre Iguodala and Evan Turner for long stretches. Jason Maxiell had played only 22 minutes this month before giving the Pistons 29 tough minutes Friday.

I’ve gone back and forth with people a lot because of my unwavering support of Will Bynum. This, via Justin Rogers, sums up perfectly why I love Bynum and hope he’s on this team for a long time:

Bynum said he’s ready to play 48 tomorrow if that’s what the team needs.

This is a snapshot of Bynum’s Pistons career:

  • First year: out-plays Stuckey and Allen Iverson, yet remains third on the depth chart
  • Second year: out-plays Stuckey early in the season (before Bynum was injured), remains second on the depth chart
  • Third year: in and out of the rotation, sometimes completely out of it, while others who struggle were allowed big minutes to work through those struggles

The point is, if anyone had cause to be frustrated with his role, it was Bynum. He plays hard. He’s had long stretches of playing at a really high level at different points in his career. And every year, he’s treated like an afterthought. And still, the man keeps a good attitude, he works hard and when he’s needed, he’ll play 96 straight minutes in back-to-back games if you ask him to.

There are certainly downside’s to Bynum’s game: he’s turnover prone, he plays too fast sometimes and, unlike McGrady who penetrates looking to pass, Bynum looks to get all the way to the rim, so that tends to nullify the opportunities for Greg Monroe to cut to the basket, which is a very reliable play with McGrady at the point.

But who wouldn’t rather watch Bynum than the other PG options at this point? He plays with as much effort as anyone on the court. He’s exciting. Unlike Stuckey, he’s actually worked on his game and extended his range in the three years he’s been with the Pistons.

And as for Monroe? He’s the youngest player on the team and been arguably the most mature this season. When he started his career with two straight DNP-CDs, he didn’t sulk, and as a lottery pick, a lot of players would’ve. He went to work. He got better. He played with the toughness that the coaching staff asked him to. He rebounds the ball like a demon even though he wasn’t a particularly dominant rebounder in college. Monroe is the single-most exciting thing about the franchise right now, as much for his attitude as his game. Monroe, Bynum … those guys are leaders right now. Those are the guys you build the team around.

77 Comments

  • Feb 25, 201110:51 pm
    by eshai

    Reply

    I dont think its possible to build around Monroe and Bynum, because Bynum appears to hate Monroe and refuses to pass to him. Bynum should never take 14 more shots than Monroe. He reminds me of Iverson but with half the talent and twice as selfish. He definitely plays hard, I give him that, but takes too many shots for my liking.

    • Feb 25, 201110:54 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      He shot 50 percent in the game though. He’s shot close to 55 percent in February. I have no problem with a guy shooting a lot if he’s hitting at that clip.

      And they actually did try and run some sets for Monroe tonight, giving him the ball in the post early. He just kept getting pushed way off the block by Elton Brand, so it wasn’t going to work.

      All I meant by the “build around” comment is build around their attitudes. I certainly don’t think Bynum’s role is to be starting point guard. But he’s a great energy guy/scorer off the bench for 20-25 minutes a game. Those are the guys whose work ethic you want the other guys you bring in to pattern themselves after.

      • Feb 26, 20111:14 am
        by BIG MARV

        Reply

        Well they shouldnt stop running plays for monroe if it stops working you keep going back to him he needs all the work this guy is the future of this team. He will make the baskets just keep feeding the guy I mean I dont blame bynum for playing like that tonight. I mean he wanted to showcase what he had without being subbed and he took the spotlight I think the V6 crew did a hell of a job tonight and I will bench them other bums for the rest of the season and give them scrub minutes, and thats all they are scrubs. Tracy Mcgrady really dissapointed me he went back to his old selfish self after nobody wanted his broken down Forrest Witaker “Last king of scotland” Capt. lazy eye ass. Arnie worked hard on you all summer and fall and this is the thanks you give him the fans and the organization!? Why because you felt that you should have been traded to a contender at mid season? I hope nobody pic up him,rip or SUCKey, and ben kinda tarnished his legacy a lil bit too by not being a stand up guy he gave up the rest of the season too. OK im finished

    • Feb 25, 201111:07 pm
      by detroitpcb

      Reply

      Eshai, you are 100% accurate. Add to it that he makes terrible decisions in the clutch, turns the ball over because he gets caught in the air trying to pass (because he is so short), allows his man to penetrate at will, and never finishes rotations on defense and you have Will Bynum
       

      • Feb 25, 201111:10 pm
        by Patrick Hayes

        Reply

        Haha. OK, then you take Rodney Stuckey, a guy who shoots almost exclusively from 15 feet and in yet can’t hit more than 43 percent of his shots in a season, a guy who has every physical tool to be a star, a guy who has never extended his range in three years in the league, and I’ll take Bynum and we’ll see whose team wins more games.

        To be clear, once again, you believe that Bynum isn’t living up to his contract and isn’t bringing value to the team, yet you believe Stuckey and Daye are building blocks?

        • Feb 25, 201111:20 pm
          by detroitpcb

          Reply

          hmmm. I seem to recall Stuckey taking some early threes against Indiana and hitting them. I think he has extended his range and i think he is improving his midrange shot.

          I also have seen Austin daye make some very clutch shots this season. I have seen him stick him nose under the boards and come up with some big rebounds. I have seen him give very good effort on defense most nights and while he doesn’t always get good results, he trys. And actually i think he can be a decent defender, especially if there would ever be help at the basket – his biggest weakness is that he has a lot of problems getting around screens and that he is not strong enough to finish at the basket if contested. I think he will continue to build body strength this off season and come back next year improved in both those ares. And i expect his offensive game to blossom, especially if the Pistons ever get a point guard who gets him the ball when he wants it – unlike Will Bynum who never looks for the kid
           
          and as far as Q goes, right now Patrick, i am ok with anything that gets him fired.

          • Feb 25, 201111:46 pm
            by Patrick Hayes

            But see, this is the fundamental difference between how you and I look at the game.

            You pick out instances — Daye hit a few big shots, Stuckey had some threes against that one team, Bynum had a late bad shot or turnover in those two games. Those are not credible evidence to me, they are small parts of a sample.

            Three-point shooting?

            Bynum has gone from 15 percent to 22 percent to 33 percent in three seasons. That’s credible, measurable improvement, evidence that he’s taken steps in the offseasons to get more comfortable with that shot. Stuckey has gone from 29 to 22 to 30 percent in three seasons. That, to me, doesn’t represent a guy that has gradually added a semi-reliable 3-point shot to his repertoire.

            How about just shooting in general? Why can’t Stuckey be expected to shoot better than 42 percent? His FG% has gotten worse since his career-high of 43 percent as a rookie. That’s unacceptable for a player billed as a cornerstone. I mean, explain it to me. How is that representing credible improvement?

            Defense?

            I give you defense. Stuckey is a prototypical defensive stopper build-wise and speed-wise. He’s inconsistent at that end of the floor, but that’s where he can turn himself into a fantastic player if he takes it seriously.

            Will Bynum works hard. He’s on a cheap contract. He’s very, very productive as far as scoring and getting assists. It doesn’t mean he’s a perfect point guard or even the answer at starting point guard. It means he’s a guy who has worked his tail off to become a pretty solid NBA player and a guy who continues to work at it. Those qualities, frankly, are things that Stuckey and Daye need a lot more of. They are unquestionably more physically talented and have more upside when compared to Bynum. But if they don’t work at it, they are just going to be the marginal players they are right now.

          • Feb 26, 201112:10 am
            by detroitpcb

            Wow, Bynum is at 33% and Stuckey is at 30% – so Bynum is somehow a more reliable three point shooter?
            Yes, Bynum is willing to play 48 minutes so he can jack up 30 or 40 shots. Point guard??? What a joke.
             
            And if you do not believe that Monroe and Daye and Stuckey are the building blocks going forward, then why do you cover this team? Management obviously believes that.
            And Austin Daye is a second year player who was drafted by management knowing that Daye would not be ready for the NBA style of play in his rookie year. Daye went home over the summer and put the work in to caome to camp and compete for a job. Reporters who cover the Pistons have said that Daye comes early to shootarounds to work on his shot and stays late to put time in the weight room. I don’t know if that is accurate or just “pub” by the promotional machine but i’ll take it at face value.
            The kid joins an organized revolt by the veterns of the team that he looks up to and respects and you are going to dog him? Give me a break.
             
             

          • Feb 26, 201112:34 am
            by Patrick Hayes

            Don’t be a dolt. You understand the point. You’re just running in circles now. Bynum has steadily improved his shooting. Stuckey has not, it’s about the same (29 percent as a rookie, 30 percent now).

            Bynum shoots 46 percent this year (and well over 50 percent in Feb.), Stuckey shoots 41.

            I believe the building blocks, in this order, are Monroe, Jerebko, Daye. Maybe Stuckey. It’s on the fence with him right now, he’s been in the league three years and he could get a significant raise. Those things make him less of a block.

            Daye is certainly incrementally better than he was last year. He’s still inconsistent, he’s still not big enough to hold up over an entire season.

            Your last sentence is insane, even by your poorly reasoned standards. He’s not a fucking 15-year-old. He’s an adult. A professional. He absolutely was in the wrong if he was, in fact, a part of this “revolt” (and I don’t know that it’s a given he was a part of it or just honestly overslept and missed the bus). If he was a part of it, it was the wrong move and he deserves criticism for that.

            I’ll respond to your “why do you cover this team?” question with a question of my own: Why do you comment here? I mean, it’s your prerogative to. But you clearly don’t enjoy the site, more often than not you’re spewing nonsense in the comments, being rude or just not adding much to the convo in general. Why bother with it? Find a site you like better. Start your own blog devoted to Austin Daye and his 41 percent shooting. Do something. Just quit recycling your same tired bullshit.

        • Feb 26, 20118:53 am
          by detroitpcb

          Reply

          talk about tired bullshit. You whole column shows how stupid you are. you are probably one of those asshole who supports the Republicans in Wisconsin and thinks workers should not have the right to strike. i support the players who sat out, so bleep you.

          and your Will Bynum. Build a team around a shoot first, egotistical point guard – yeah, that is a great idea. Like last night when Philly pulled away in the 4th. Started when Bynum got his shot blocked and Philly dunked on the other end. So totally predictable. Happens every game. Bynum makes stupid decision in the clutch

          and for Daye, the kid may be shooting 42% but it would be a lot higher if somebody named Will Bynum got him the ball when he is open.

          and as far as 3 point percentages- Bynum is at 33%. What is Daye at? Maybe Bynum should get the ball to people who have a higher percentage than he does. Isn’t that what point guards are supposed to do?

          • Feb 26, 201110:59 am
            by Patrick Hayes

            You didn’t answer the question.

            You also make a lot of leaps from a column about basketball. You kind of come off like a crazy person, actually.

            Also, have you ever met Will Bynum?

          • Feb 26, 201111:14 am
            by Asshole that supports Republicans in Wisconson

            Hello All!  Patrick, I got your back. 

            Team building is about more than talent.  How much talent did Iverson have?  How about Marbury, Vince Carter & Shawn Kemp?  Bad attitudes can destroy teams.  Basketball is not really that difficult of a game, but there seems to be no willingness to work on it anymore.  It’s like if a player has been told they are good at 13 years old, they decide they belong in the NBA and just stop listening or working to get better.  They already have the athleticism, so they will make it to the leauge and be rich, right? 

            That is why the story of Ben Wallace and the Championship Pistons was so great.  We can all live with a flawed player, as long as there is commitment, effort and buy-in to the team concept. 

            There is no arguement that Q is a terrible coach and needs to be replaced, but this “boycott” did not help the players cause.  Now the organization needs to address the command structure in place.  Not just for today’s coach, but also for every GM and coach in the future.  If that means keeping Bynum over Stuckey than so be it.  I don’t think it will be THAT hard for the organization to replace a guard averaging 15 ppg.

          • Feb 26, 201111:20 am
            by Patrick Hayes

            “I support the players who sat out.”

            That’s your choice. The reality is, there is no villain and no hero in this situation. Clueless/inept management, clueless/inept coaching and players who have inflated senses of their own value. To say that there is a “side” to get behind here is a stretch. Every single player, coach, GM involved in this mess has done poorly at his job.

            The players hate their coach, and I get that. But to not admit that what they have done has damaged the perception of an organization that was once considered first class? You’re just being naive. Dumars has damaged it, Karen Davidson has damaged it, John Kuester has damaged it, but this very ugly, very public incident is by far the most high profile damage that is going to result in national negative attention on the franchise.

            Let’s go one-by-one though with some counterpoints about each player, and why they owed the organization better, whether they hate their coach or not:

            - Daye: Dumars drafted him significantly higher than he was pegged b/c he believes in his talent. Daye was projected by every outlet as mid/late 20s and in a couple of cases, early second round. Dumars took him at 15. Because of how rookie salaries are slotted, that made Daye significantly more money.

            - McGrady: No one wanted him. Chicago worked him out and said, “you know what, we’re cool with Keith Bogans.” Minus Detroit giving him a contract, he might be in Europe this season too.

            - Hamilton: Dumars gave him an incredibly lucrative contract extension right at the end of his prime. After the deal was agreed to and the Billups trade went through shortly after, Dumars gave Hamilton the opportunity to back out and not sign it. Hamilton decided to sign anyway. He’s had three straight poor seasons making a lot of money. He had the opportunity at the trade deadline to accept a buyout and join a contender in Boston that desperately wants him. Again, he declined. So it’s pretty hard to feel sympathetic to his “plight.”

            - Ben Wallace: Contemplating retirement when there was little interest in him before last season, Dumars gave him a contract. Wallace came back and played his heart out, restoring some goodwill that was lost when he left acrimoniously for Chicago. Wallace has given everything to Detroit on the court, but the Pistons also made him into an iconic player during his prime. Not many teams would base their entire marketing campaign for three years around a guy who was solely a defensive player, even if he was a damn good one.

            - Prince: As the youngest of the championship five, he’s been tabbed as a transitional star, who was supposed to use his intelligence/basketball savvy to teach a new generation of young players how to play the way those old Pistons teams played. Has he lived up to that? He’s been productive. He’s also been a terrible leader. I can go back to the archives from early in the season and find your rants about how horribly he treated Daye if you want me to. They still exist, trust me.

            - Stuckey: This one is the killer. He has been given everything by this team. They shipped out an All-Star to open up a starting spot for him after Stuckey had only played half a season as a rookie. His year-to-year improvement has been so incremental. Basically, the only things he does better now than as a rookie are get to the line a couple more times a game and defend with a little more consistency. Stuckey was an unknown from a tiny college, and he was given the reigns of a team that had been to six straight ECF. Just given them. Does he not owe Dumars at the very least the professionalism not to create a public shitstorm in the media by being part of an alleged organized boycott of practice?

            Kuester sucks. It’s well-established. But these are not players who have been treated poorly. You comparing this to teachers striking to keep collective bargaining power is incredibly stupid. These guys have guaranteed contracts which they’ll keep know matter how they behave. If you really think there are any parallels whatsoever between the two situations … well, based on your track record, I’m sure you do believe there are parallels. So this will be the last response to you, whether you continue reading the site and commenting or not.

      • Feb 26, 20111:00 am
        by gmehl1977

        Reply

        PCB you should never be jumping in the air when you pass anyways. I am not really fans of any of the guards on this team but i think the reason why Stuckey, Bynum, Gordon and even Rip look so ordinary is the lack of talent we have in the front court. Monroe, CV, Maxiell, Wallace and Wilcox are not the kind of front line that is going to make any of our guards look good. You put one good PF or C on this team like Aldridge, Millsap, West or Boozer that can get some easy buckets down low then things would be very different. My biggest fear is seeing someone like Stuckey or Bynum leaving and playing for a team that has more structure through all 5 positions on court and performing really well because of it. I don’t want to see another Afflao situation happen again.

    • Feb 25, 201111:57 pm
      by swish22

      Reply

      I agree with you here Patrick on the Bynum issue and pretty much everything else mentioned.  The interview was a breath of fresh air listening to Bynum saying hes ready to go 48 minutes again tomorrow night!!  He seems to be working hard every day to improve! 
        As far as those guys laughing on the bench after K got thrown out it just makes me sick to my stomach watching these overpaid classless and unprofessional individuals!  Any player sitting on the bench after that no-call on the other end and the immediate ejection of K should’ve been riding the officials instead of laughing.    There is no team for most of these 7 individuals.  Ship them out even if we go 0-82 i’d be happier than watching the princess, ripped off and their 5 foolish minions.

  • Feb 25, 201110:52 pm
    by qm22

    Reply

    Assuming this is an organized “revolt” (as there has not been a public release and only speculation; everyone seemed to be gone for a different reason, Daye and Stuckey may have been late for the bus which is hardly a scandal), most of the guys in the revolt are considered to be good character and have shown themselves to be that. I do not agree with the idea that Kuester can have done anything and the blame lies solely with the players. It would be better to get the full story before throwing them all under the bus. Also, this is reminiscent of the story that Stuckey refused to come back in the game which circled around the national media and drew criticism from Jeff van Gundy, but later turned out to be a different story altogether.
    It is also hard to criticize the players for being “unprofessional” if we are not going to say the same when a coach benches a player for personal reasons rather than trying to win. It has to go both ways to have credibility.

    • Feb 25, 201111:05 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      “Assuming this is an organized “revolt” (as there has not been a public release”

      You think the team is going to send out a press release if their players openly don’t show up as a sign of disrespect to the coach? Haha. We’ll be waiting a long time for that “public release.”

      Vincent Goodwill of the News and Vince Ellis of the Freep both reported it, quoting a “team source.” Those guys were both at shootaround and are reliable reporters. And no one in the postgame comments went out of their way to deny or say that the story was wrong. So yeah, I’m going to lean towards this as something that had at least a little thought put into it beforehand.

      “I do not agree with the idea that Kuester can have done anything and the blame lies solely with the players.”

      Uh … I never said that. Kuester is certainly a terrible coach who should be and probably will be fired at some point soon, whether it’s this season or after the season. But this incident? That’s classless on the part of these players and the blame for that does, in fact, lay solely with them. They are paid very well to do a job, whether they like the coach or not. In fact, they can hate the coach. But you can’t just not show up.

      “Also, this is reminiscent of the story that Stuckey refused to come back in the game which circled around the national media”

      The local version of that story was reported correctly. The local Detroit writers who cover the team both reported that Stuckey ignored instructions on the court and then was benched. Van Gundy is a commentator, not a reporter, and commentators make dumb comments all the time.

      This post is an opinion piece on solidly reported events that have yet to be refuted.

      “It is also hard to criticize the players for being “unprofessional””

      No, it’s very easy to criticize them for that when they are laughing like fools on the bench in a game they could be helping the team win if they bothered to show up for practice. Kuester did say after the game, if you watched his comments, that the players had excuses for missing practice, but they were not “excused” absences. It means they most likely missed practice with no pre-warning and then offered up excuses after the fact.

      “benches a player for personal reasons rather than trying to win.”

      How about the reason that that player was having a bad season? He’s a shooter allegedly, and he was shooting 40 percent when he was benched. Also, was the team winning when Hamilton was playing? Come on man. They were terrible when he was in there. It wasn’t all his fault, but he certainly wasn’t playing well, and they gave him a very long time as the starter — two full months, followed by one month of getting 20-28 minutes per game off the bench — to break out of his slump and he didn’t.

      • Feb 25, 201111:28 pm
        by qm22

        Reply

        OK, I will just say I think there are some critical details because there are some things that do not make sense. Despite criticism for his play Rodney has been a character guy, and it is hard to believe Daye would be capable of this under reasonable circumstances. The other guys (aside from Rip) had long careers of professionalism. Given Kue’s record here I doubt we have enough info, but we shall see… my point is your judgment of them is based on pretty superficial information, given how closed we have been to internal struggles.
        In my earlier post I was not talking about Hamilton. Kuester benched Rodney for not responding in a game, which we needed him for. I supported Hamilton’s benching after his play–I was talking about the way that Kuester has basically not done the best things for the Pistons to win or develop for a LONG time now. Not only the Pistons’ record has been damaged, but so have the careers of some of our players.

        • Feb 25, 201111:33 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          OK, my fault on the Hamilton thing. I actually kind of agree on the Stuckey thing. I mean, if he was going to bench him, fine. But Prince called him a buffoon in the media and yelled at him a few times during games this season caught on cameras and was never reprimanded for it, yet Stuckey had to sit? That’s another example of poor coaching because it seems like different standards for different players.

          I think it’s possible Daye just overslept and wasn’t part of some mutiny, and maybe Stuckey too. They’ve certainly not been real friendly with the veteran guys, so it’s strange that they would all of a sudden be in some collaboration off the court with them. Hopefully, what really happened comes out and clears it up if they truly were not doing this to be insubordinate. It’s still immature on their part and insanely poor timing, but more excusable for sure.

  • Feb 25, 201111:00 pm
    by detroitpcb

    Reply

    what a bunch of moralistic garbage. How professional is it for a coach to bench a player of Rip’s background and not talk to him about it privately?  When Austin Daye got yanked out of the lineup early in the season, he was never told why. If you are a head coach in the NBA, the first f*cking quality you need is the ability to communicate. The players know the season is over after that loss to Indiana and they are sick of this joke of a head coach.
    And i won’t even talk about your ridiculous comments about Will Bynum
     

    • Feb 25, 201111:06 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      So, I can infer from your comments that you’re totally cool with players not showing up to practice in an effort to force a team to fire a coach?

    • Feb 25, 201111:07 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Also, I give Laser a rough time, but you’re by far the most unenlightened commenter here. So excuse me if I don’t take your “moralistic garbage” critique ultra seriously.

    • Feb 27, 20111:03 pm
      by Tim Thielke

      Reply

      If reports are true, and i really don’t know whether they are about the verbal abuse that Kuester took from Hamilton without responding prior to removing him from the lineup, then yes, it would still be better if Hamilton was told why he was removed from the rotation. But it is not extremely necessary. Because he and everyone else knows it is for his terrible-example-setting case of insuboordination–especially give the fact that he is completely replaceable with a ton of other players so the Pistons typically don’t need him. A lot of people recognized that the rotation would probably be better if one SG was completely removed from it. Then Hamilton behaves like that. Of course he was out. Kuester still should have told him. But in that case, not speaking privately beforehand becomes excusable.

  • Feb 25, 201111:01 pm
    by Zinto

    Reply

    This is honestly the saddest moment of my Piston loving career. I have no interest in resigning Prince, Stuckey, or McGrady now. I can’t believe so many of the people here are on the side of the players. Its as Patrick said no one thinks Q has done a good job coaching here but you know what when you make millions of dollars you go to practice and you go and play your hardest.

  • Feb 25, 201111:04 pm
    by jayg108

    Reply

    I’ve been hoping to read a good write-up on tonight’s drama, something that didn’t tiptoe around.  Good stuff.
     
    This needed to happen.  Kinda like zits need to come to a head before popping out the pus.  Maybe it will be a wake-up call for Karen to take Gores offer.

  • Feb 25, 201111:08 pm
    by Danny D

    Reply

    Patrick love the article. You were way to easy on the players. Although drunkin tirades just aren’t your style. This teams an utter disgrace and as someone else said, this is the first time im sorta ashamed to be a pistons fan.

  • Feb 25, 201111:13 pm
    by Rodman4Life

    Reply

    What a mess!  Got to fire Kuester.  But also, can/release a player or two.  With that stunt and his low salary, let McGrady go.  Ungrateful waste of space, he should be more thankful that Arnie “miracle” Kander helped him out.  Remember, nobody wanted him.  His “stature” is being poorly misdirected (against the coach/franchise).  Spell out what the players have to do to redeem themselves (statement of apology, 1000 pushups, something).   If they don’t comply, they don’t play.  And all of them should get a stiff FINE from the ballclub.  That will help pay for them sitting/buyout.  The coach gets fired for his poor communication and the players should be held accountable for that same reason: communication.  This is so utterly disappointing for my Detroit Pistons.  This is not how our team does business.  This is not who our city is.  We are a city of hard workers, we fight for what we believe in.  I do not believe in this team anymore.

    • Feb 25, 201111:19 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Exactly. This isn’t meant to overshadow the fact that Kuester should’ve been fired probably a long time ago. But like I said, coaches deserve to be fired all the time, have poor communication all the time, and a group of players in the NBA, to my knowledge, have never simply not shown up. Regardless of the coaching situation, an organization can’t allow that to happen.

  • Feb 25, 201111:17 pm
    by Regan

    Reply

    Atleast this will force Dumars to blow this garbage team up.

  • Feb 25, 201111:19 pm
    by Larry

    Reply

    A very well written piece.  Two additional thoughts.
    1) The timing of this “mutiny” is mind boggling.  It could derail the sale, season ticket renewals went out this week, and the huge cloud of collective bargaining is on the horizon.  The players are soiling their own next and also making life miserable for everyone in their organization.  They tarnished the Pistons brand and the NBA brand.
     
    2) The rapid downfalls of Saunders, Curry, Kuester really make one wonder who CAN coach this crew.  The only honorable thing to do would be for Dumars to finish the season, Kevin McHale style. A more fitting appointment would be to hand the reins to Rip and let him keep the gang happy with minutes, “communication” and the tender loving care this crew of brats seems to crave.

    • Feb 25, 201111:21 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Terry Foster said on the radio that it was actually planned for the Indiana game before the All-Star break, but they didn’t go through with it. If only they had, perhaps there would’ve been more motivation to look to move more guys at the deadline.

    • Feb 25, 201111:21 pm
      by Larry

      Reply

      Oops, make that, “The players are soiling their own nest . . . .”

  • Feb 25, 201111:28 pm
    by derek s

    Reply

    not showing up for work is never the right way to deal with how u feel about your coach, the players should have done something else to show their anger. but they have a good reason to be mad at kuester, he hasnt handled important situations the right way.

  • Feb 25, 201111:39 pm
    by Rodman4Life

    Reply

    We need at least one casualty from each wrongful party.  Kuester and . . . . . .

    McGrady (my preference)
    Wilcox
    Hamilton
    Prince
    Daye
    Stuckey
    Wallace

    Hamilton buyout way too expensive.  Daye, young and dumb, apologize and we’ll forgive him.  Stuckey, that little sheep, stop being a FOLLOWER and start being a leader, apologize AND play your a** off the rest of the season.  Prince and Wallace, one LAST benefit of the doubt for your past nobility.  Kind of like a family member that you are reluctant to disown.  Finally, Wilcox and McGrady.  They mean what to us now?  What value do they have anymore?  I would fire them immediately.  And if they backtalk to the media, there is nothing as compelling as a well-written organizational statement to the media that would “rat” them out.  I don’t think McGrady has the business suave to talk his way out of his poor actions.

    • Feb 25, 201111:52 pm
      by derek s

      Reply

      well if u missed work unexcused would ur boss be ok with it? all the players who skipped should be fired, suspended or some sort of punishment other then losing playing time. playing in the nba is a privilege.  people need a reality check if they think they can just miss work and think it will be alright.

      • Feb 25, 201111:57 pm
        by Patrick Hayes

        Reply

        Well, we don’t have guaranteed contracts at our jobs, so it’s not a perfect comparison, although it would be nice if players went to work with that approach.

        There are financial ramifications — the team can’t eat that much salary even if they thought cutting/buying out some of the players would be the best solution.

        They could maybe do suspensions, but that puts a lot of pressure on the guys playing, many of whom aren’t accustomed to huge minutes and could risk injury.

        There’s just no perfect solution to it. It’s just a lousy, completely avoidable situation with blame for management, coaches and players to go around.

        • Feb 26, 201112:30 am
          by bg8

          Reply

          none of the players are gonna get release. and they will have to play since you can’t expect your guards to play 48min a night, the the bigs 30-45 min a game the rest of the season. so hopefully, kuester bring them back, but off the bench for like 10-15min a game only (maybe can give daye alittle more minute since he’ll be back next year, maybe stuckey too). but who cares if they are having a good game, you take them out. that way, bg and cv will get their minutes and won’t be playing too much to injured themselves

          but if kuester do bring them back, it will be interesting to see what those 6 or 7 do when they are actually in the game. will they just dogged it, or will they actually show respect to their team and the game and actually play hard. i think it will be the latter rather than the former though, but still limit their minutes, most of them willl be gone next year anyway.

  • Feb 25, 201111:55 pm
    by Brian

    Reply

    This has to be the low point of my 25+ years as a big fan of the pistons. It’s sad in a different way, but almost as painful as when Bird stole the inbounds pass and Wallace left Horry open. I live in California and before the game I saw the “Imported from Detroit” commercial and it makes me proud to have grown up in the Detroit area. The Pistons used to be a reflection of the city as well and that always made me proud. But no more.
    As bad as Kuester is, there is no excuse for any of these guys making millions of dollars to act this way. The last I checked the NBA is a PROFESSIONAL basketball league. Not the rec or 6th grade CYO. It’s not realistic but I don’t want to see any of these guys ever stop on the floor again for Detroit. They should have traded Stuckey before the deadline since he actually has value. Now, do you really want to re-sign him? Daye will never impact the game as much as Jerebko so who cares about developing him anyway at the three spot. Wallace, Tay, and Rip…the glory days are long over. It’s hard to believe all three of these guys are still on the team in the first place. Wilcox…I won’t waste anyone’s time with a comment on him. And that leaves McGrady. It wasn’t too long ago that every other team in the league was laughing at him as they turned him away in his quest for a roster spot and chance to show he can still play. Joe D gave him that chance and this is the thanks he shows…laughing at Kuester for getting ejected. Must be nice to live so far out of reality.
    I wish Jonas and Terrico were healthy and they could bring up some D Leaguers to finish the season. At least I would want to watch then. And lastly, while I don’t excuse any of the players for their actions, it’s a bummer that ultimately Joe D, who I have always revered, is left with the stain on his hands for all of this.

  • Feb 26, 201112:53 am
    by J

    Reply

    This is by far the worst article I have ever read!

    • Feb 26, 20118:42 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Haha. I bet. So you are saying, then, that the actions of the players were appropriate?

  • Feb 26, 20111:06 am
    by gmehl1977

    Reply

    I suppose the new team motto next year might have to be “not goin to work”.
     
    If the players were going to do this revolt then it would of been better if the whole team did it. I am 100% sure by morning Kuester will resign as coach. How can you go to battle when your own soldiers want to shoot you in the back.

    • Feb 26, 20118:44 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Well, I doubt it. If he were a big name coach, maybe. But this is likely Kuester’s only shot at a head coaching gig. I’d be surprised if he resigns, unless he’s asked to by the team.

  • Feb 26, 20111:11 am
    by Beka

    Reply

    Ok, let’s be real
    Rodney Stucky has been the Pistons next big thing for the past few years now and he has shown very little improvement (ppg are even down from last year) and very little leadership…not really worth anyone’s time anymore unless he works his ass off this summer and starts to look like someone who’s been around the league for a few years.
    Rip should go.  I love the pistons and Rip and I still go onto youtube and watch clips from the glory days when I’m feeling depressed about the current situation, but I think Rip has been on a downhill slide for years (like even in some Eastern conference finals appearances he looked terrible).  They should have gotten rid of him as soon as he started throwing a fit about not starting anymore.  News flash Rip, once you’re in the second half of your career you start to play less.  Sorry.
    Austin Daye may legally be an adult, but he’s 21.  As someone who is almost 21 I make mistakes sometimes.  I set my alarm and oversleep and I’m not the only one my age.  Yeah, he’s making a whole lot more money than I’m am but he’s still 21.  I know that if some 30+ year old mentioned a mutiny, I would probably follow along.  Either way, he shouldn’t be traded because of one thing that may or may not be excused.
    Chris Wilcox…whatever, yeah they needed bigs who were actually, well, big…but he means nothing to me.
    Ben Wallace missed for family reasons.  If this were the first time he used that excuse, I’d call a big BS on him.  However, it’s been ongoing, so that’s his deal.  He’s only got a little more time left in the league anyway, might as well be with the Pistons for sentimental reasons and whatnot.
    Tracy McGrady is becoming irrelevant.  He should have spent more time recovering after his injury and he’d be back to 25 ppg again.  Are the Pistons willing to work with him to beat him back into shape?  IDK, but if they find some better rookie, by all means snatch him up.
    Tayshaun Prince is having a great season.  Ppg are similar to after they won the championship and he’s fine.  Yeah, the coach pissed him off and he exploded, but he’s definitely been one of the most reliable pistons.  Get Kuester out of there and Tayshaun will be back to normal.
    And as far as the laughing, it happens.  Maybe someone made a joke and they thought it was funny.  People in Detroit deserve to laugh once in a while.  Rude?  Yeah, but most of American society is.  The NBA is just a bunch of thugs with different standards than the rest of the society in every other regard, why do we expect anything different now?

  • Feb 26, 20111:23 am
    by Craig

    Reply

    Either buy Rip out or DNP CD him the rest of the year. Ban him from the team.
    Waive Ben if he was indeed part of this ballyhoo. That will send a serious message to the youngsters that being a Piston means something.
    Fire Kuester and bring Dumars down to the bench. This is the Timberwolve strategy of eliminating your Achilles heal ala McHale. It’s time Joe D know what it’s like to sit in a hot seat previously owned by Carlisle, Brown, Saunders and Curry..
    Get Tom Gores in here at ALL COSTS!!! Gores performs best in toxic situations like the one the Pistons are currently in. In fact I’d say this is EXACTLY what he does. Flush out the negative assets, seek the positive one and structure an organization around them.

  • Feb 26, 20111:29 am
    by Jeremy

    Reply

    “I don’t have any thoughts on anything that’s going on. I just try to stay professional and positive throughout whatever’s going on. You know, because it’s still a business. It’s still my job to be a professional basketball player, so that’s what I’m trying to do.”

    I hope everyone who sat out today heard this Will Bynum quote.

  • Feb 26, 20111:56 am
    by Laser

    Reply

    i may get killed for this, but since it’s a new low: i don’t think there’s nearly enough blame left over for anyone else once you’ve finished blaming joe. this situation is so bad it’s insane. headed in this direction for a long time. at what point do the pistons snap? something had to give. this is an untenable situation, and they’ve been tenning it endlessly. i reached my breaking point right when they did.
     
    i don’t see how anyone could see a bright future for this team, and joe keeps it together. it’s insanity. joe would never step down and coach the team, but it’s certainly gotten to the point where it would be a reasonable demand. he built this team and had some vision of a versatile team or whatever, but the parts are obviously being used all wrong, so i want to see how they’re supposed to fit.

    • Feb 26, 20118:45 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      I mean, if you want to continue to use hindsight, then that’s a fine conclusion. Yes, Dumars is ultimately responsible for the roster, the coach and for not stepping in sooner when it was clear there were major problems.

      We’re beyond that point though. Was it reasonable for seven players to essentially quit on the team? That’s the question that has to be answered right now, hindsight or no hindsight.

      • Feb 26, 20119:46 am
        by Jeremy

        Reply

        Agreed. The players have a responsibility that is largely independent of how well or poorly Joe does his job. We’re all in charge of our own behavior, not that of others.

  • Feb 26, 20113:01 am
    by phelan

    Reply

    Is it 100% certain Tayshaun was in on this?  I didn’t even see him on the bench, maybe he really was sick, and it was just wrong place, wrong time?
     
    Not to forgive his antics off the court this season, but you have to admit he’s having a pretty season numbers wise, and he still works hard game-to-game.  The same can’t be said of other ‘professionals’ on the squad.

    • Feb 26, 20118:46 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Well, he’s certainly made it clear he hates the coach. Since none of the players involved have spoken on this, it’s not 100 percent certain what any of their involvement is. But with Prince, I’d say it’s highly likely he’s involved.

  • Feb 26, 20116:15 am
    by Zeiram

    Reply

    I have to disagree with you strongly… that is all. You laid down you reasons, it is your opinion, your blog, thats cool. But I like your blog and I hope you won´t to continue to reiterate this opinion in every following post.
    Because I have to say your utter disgust for the players at the moment is hard to read.

    • Feb 26, 20118:47 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      So are you saying their actions were justifiable?

      Sorry, but this is a national story right now. I don’t want to cover it or write about it, but it’s impossible to ignore.

      Kuester is no victim or martyr here, but the actions of the players was inexcusable.

      • Feb 26, 20119:24 am
        by Zeiram

        Reply

        I don´t want you to cover it up, don´t misunderstand. I am just saying, I hope the tone in which you talk about the players right now won´t carry over to normal articles about game recaps, draft outlooks etc.
         
        And let´s just say I don´t say the actions were justifiable or good but I disagree with your judgement of the players themselves.

      • Feb 26, 20119:27 am
        by Zeiram

        Reply

        I am not saying I don´t want you to write about this, don´t misunderstand me. I am saying I hope the tone in which you write about the players right now won´t carry over to the “normal” program (game recaps/previews, draft outlook etc.). This is a difference. I am no one who stops reading a good blog just because he disagrees one time with the writer.
         
        Also I am not justifying the actions of the players but I think your judgment on them is too hard, let´s leave it at that.

        • Feb 26, 201111:02 am
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          Listen, I try to be pretty fair-minded when I write. I have some obvious biases for and against different players/coaches that I’ve been open about.

          But this incident? It really didn’t strike me as a time to be analytical. Reading responses to people on Twitter all night, both Pistons fans and writers and NBA fans who were shocked at what was going on with Detroit, it’s pretty clear that this is an unprecedented situation. The players have some legitimate beefs with the way the coaching staff has treated them/ran the team, and I’m not saying they don’t. But this is the absolute worst possible way to go about bringing attention to that, and I felt like that needed to be stressed last night.

          Trust me, it’s not something I want to continuously dwell on after this.

  • Feb 26, 20116:51 am
    by Jakob Eich

    Reply

    Great post Patrick!
     
    I just think we should really leave Daye out of this. AS already mentioned he’s looking up to all of the player that revolted so he just joined them. I don’t think he ever would have thought about doing that all by himself.
    It was an incredibly selfish act by the five, but it is hard playing for a coach you don’t like. Actually it perfectly illustrates what was wrong with the post-’04 Pistons all along, they didn’t listen to coaches anymore. Ben Wallace and Rip were always known for it. They got rid of Brown and Saunders, two very capable coaches. They have learned that they can get rid of the coaches they don’t like, because Dumars has always gotten rid of the coaches they didn’t like. Why would they change now?
    They timed this perfectly. There won’t be buyouts and the team can’t trade anyone or add players out of the free agent pool. Kuester HAS to play them though. Playing only six players in a back-to-back increases the chance for injury by alot. Almost none of the players are used to this workload. It often takes months and years to prepare your better so it can handle it. I don’t want none of these guys to get injured!

    • Feb 26, 20118:48 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Daye and Stuckey can redeem themselves if they show back up and work/play hard.

      But whether he looks up to them or not, Daye is a grown man, a professional, who can make his own decisions.

  • Feb 26, 20117:29 am
    by Muellinger

    Reply

    Thanks Patrick, this is exactly how I feel about this mess. These guys emberassed the fans, their teammates and the whole Pistons organisation. It doesn’t surprise me to see Rip and Prince do that, cause they have been constantly ignoring that the glory days of 2004 are gone (and for that matter that their glory days are gone). But Wallace? Come on, no one else in this league would have given him the chance to rejuvenate his carreer like Dumars did. And that’t his way of saying “Thank you?” Same goes for McGrady. What does he think? Playing solid for a couple of weeks gives him the right to demand another coach? He should be thankful for every second on the court, that Arnie made possible. To Wilcox I’m not going to say anything (but who the hell does he think he is? He didn’t accomplish anything in his career.). But as I think about it, the same goes for Stuckey, who didn’t meet expectation so far and continues to be as onedimensional as any PG in this league. I mean, he can’t pass or knock down some jumpers consistently and still gets lots of minutes.
    I’m also disappointed with Daye, but I hope, that Dumars talks to him and rightens his head. I hope that him being in this fray was just a case of a young player listen to some old fools. He should get another chance next year after sitting out the rest of this one. The others? Suspend them, I don’t want to see them again in a pistons uniform. Lets play Monroe, bynum, CV, Gordon, Summers and maybe some D-Leaguers. It’s a lost year anyway so get them the minutes and get a better draft position. And please don’t fire Q now, what would mean, that this behaviour is somehow being tolerated. Fire him after the season and start from ground zero next year.

  • Feb 26, 20119:30 am
    by Gomezd

    Reply

    That ended GREAT for the French Soccer team at the world cup. Its sure to work wonders for this team!

  • [...] article about the situation. The Pistons have only six players who respect their league and profession PistonPowered __________________ [...]

  • Feb 26, 20119:56 am
    by Alan

    Reply

    I never took an issue with Karen Davidson.  She said from day one that she wanted to sell the team.  She doesn’t love this puppy like her ol’ man and I got no problem with that.  It certainly has hurt the team that management has not been allowed to take on any money.  And now it has crushed the team that management doesn’t so much as have the authority to fire the coach and name a replacement.
     
    I wish she’d toss a couple milion so we could promote Walker or Hill.
     
    McGrady’s season goes to waste – can’t see him back.
    Hamilton will survive and this story will go on.
    Prince will be gone.
    Wallace will be forgive but…DAMN, really Ben?
    Wilcox will never get another NBA contract.

  • Feb 26, 201110:10 am
    by Bo Bradly

    Reply

    It’s easy to sit and throw blame around. And, by the way, Patrick, I agree with your post 100%. Post more.
    However, regardless of who agrees with you and who doesn’t, there is only one path out of this mess as I see it. You have my full permission to post this as a blog or pass along to Gores as I am available to be GM. ;-)
    Here is my Eleven-Point Plan to REDEEM THE TEAM:
    Pre-Step One: SELL THE TEAM to Gores. Have him be involved but not ridiculous like Cuban or arrogant like Porkorov (sp?).
    Step One: RETAIN KUESTER for the remainder of the season. Anything else gives too much power to the players.
    Step Two: FIND OUT EXACTLY WHO “REVOLTED”–McGrady, Hamilton, Wilcox (I’m still laughing), and Prince for sure. If the list includes Wallace, Stuckey, and Daye, so be it. I’m skeptical they were involved, but I would not be surprised. Disappointed, not surprised. Once it is determined who revolted, SUSPEND THEM FOR THE REST OF THE SEASON. Make them sit in suits behind the team every game and have them swim in their filth as the announcers and writers remind them daily of their incredible lack of respect for everything Pistons and NBA related. SIDE NOTE FOR Step Two: Please allow Arnie to hand McGrady his suspension papers.
    Step Three: BRING IN D-LEAGUE PLAYERS who show even a glimmer of promise for the rest of the season. They will play harder than anyone who revolted and remind the revolters, the community, the team, and the league that hard work is rewarded and that prima dona attitudes are shamed.
    Step Four: After the season ends, REMOVE JOE D. This makes me sad, but it is time. New blood and a new vision is necessary. I take no joy in this, but it is time. See if JOHN HAMMOND is available (I don’t know his contract details) and HIRE HIM. A connection to the championship year and those ECF appearances will be reassuring to the fan base. If Hammond is not available, strongly pursue Grant Hill. Pursue Grant Hill even if Hammond is available as Hammond’s right hand guy. Pay him what it takes. Groom Grant to be the next GM after Hammond retires. Have you seen Grant Hill’s resume?
    Step Five: With Piston work ethic renewed (the return of Jerebko alongside Monroe, Bynum, and a bunch of D-leaguers will have gone a long way to serve that purpose) and the season concludes, WAIVE, TRADE, BUYOUT EVERY MEMBER OF THE REVOLT. They have no place on the Pistons roster. Gores can use his billions to purge the team and send the proper message. The community would immediately love him! Preferably, stockpile young talent and draft picks…follow, generally, the OKC model. I also believe forgiveness is acceptable for Daye and Stuckey and Wallace–if indeed they were involved–if they MAN UP, take responsibility, apologize, and work harder than they ever have worked on the court.
    Step Six: After the season has ended, remove Kuester and HIRE LAIMBEER AS HEAD COACH. The Piston fan base needs to have one of their own to right this ship. Not Mark Jackson, not Van Gundy. Not not not. Laimbeer will not take crap. He will immediately have respect from every corner of Piston Nation. He will have a slight air of intimidation about him that will work to keep all the accumulated HARD WORKING youngsters on the roster developing properly. (Do you think Daye would have revolted against Laimbeer? No. No. And no.) Bottom line: Laimbeer is a winner and it’s his time.
    Step Seven: STEAL BACK TOM WILSON.
    Step Eight: TRADE GORDON AND VILLANUEVA. They just are not Piston-type players. Preferably, we receive young talent and draft picks. I don’t care if we have ten draft picks in 2011 and 2012 (preferably 2012). We’ll meet the minimum salary cap somehow. Focus on young, hungry, hard-working, high character, athletic players.
    Step Nine: DRAFT hungry, hard-working, high character, athletic players. (For example: Monroe, not Cousins. I’d say Joe D got that one right, but Monroe did fall in his lap.)
    Step Ten: ENGAGE IN A MARKETING CAMPAIGN AROUND A “RETURN TO WORK” SLOGAN. Hire Kid Rock to write and perform the song. Make it loud and proud.
    Step Eleven: As the payroll will be truly manageable, lower ticket prices. Gores won’t be hurting in the next few years. And over the next few years his investment (the team) will improve and recapture the hearts of Detroiters. He can gradually raise the prices of the lower level tickets–which is understandable. However, he must allow the working class community access to games…as a family.
    In one summer’s time, the FEEL of the Pistons will be back and the on court performance should steadily improve. It will be costly at the jump, yes, but Gores has the money. It will cost him, what?, $30M to purge the team via buyout? If it’s my investment, I do it. It’s a long-term plan that needs to start NOW.

    • Feb 26, 201110:23 am
      by Zeiram

      Reply

      That is totally a Plan I can get behind. Especially the thing about Bill Laimbeer, firing Joe D and getting back to work!

      • Feb 26, 201111:14 am
        by Bo Bradly

        Reply

        So I have your vote for GM!? ;-)

    • Feb 26, 201111:40 am
      by Asshole that supports Republicans in Wisconson

      Reply

      Watch out, with a plan like that, you might be in danger of also becoming an “asshole that supports Republicans in Wisconson”. lol!

    • Feb 26, 20112:44 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      One common misconception to clear up. For the Pistons to sign new players, even D-Leaguers, they’d have to waive players. Their roster is full at 15. Yes, inactive players count.

  • Feb 26, 201110:33 am
    by Lucas

    Reply

    Why is everyone making Daye sound like a baby? “Daye looked up to the veterans and followed their actions”. Daye is a 22 year old professional athlete, he can make his own decisions quite easily. Why didn’t Monroe follow Ben Wallace? Because he’s an adult. These players have disgraced the organization, and it’s time to clean house. But of course they do it the day after the trade deadline so now we are stuck with them for the rest of the year. Man i hate half the pistons.

  • Feb 26, 201111:31 am
    by Isaac

    Reply

    Two points:
    1. The silver lining to all of this drama is that if the players continue to sit, we’ll see how our $100,000,000 investment in Charlie V and Ben Gordon can play as unquestioned starters for the first time in their careers.  Most GM’s don’t pay that kind of money for lifetime bench guys, so it’s far past time to see what they can do in the starting rotation.
    2. It’s really easy to blame the players in this situation.  Yes, they let down the team yesterday, and reminded me of the Iverson “glory years”.  But the fact of the matter is, John Kuester and Joe Dumars have been letting down the team for two solid years.  Karen Davidson has disgraced her husband’s legacy.  And Pistons fans have been as disappointing as those three, half-filling the Palace late and disinterested.
    Four accomplished and (for better or worse) proud NBA veterans decided yesterday that enough was enough.  I don’t know exactly what Kuester did to deserve the disdain his players seem to have for him, but I can guarantee you this was not just a childish act of petulance from overpaid prima donnas.

    • Feb 26, 20112:46 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Isaac, without knowing Kuester did to lead to this, how can you guarantee “this was not just a childish act of petulance from overpaid prima donnas”?

  • Feb 26, 201112:48 pm
    by Adam

    Reply

    I must be missing something.  What do Prince, T-Mac, Stuck and Wilcox have to gain by participating in this player revolt?  All four are playing for new contracts for next season and beyond.  With this on their resume, it significantly damages their value in the eyes of their next team.

    So again, what do these players have to gain by doing this?  Nothing.  Which leads me to believe that there’s a lot more going on behind closed doors that’s not being reported.  When players are willing to jepordize $$ ( and they’re not willing to do that for anything;  See: Hamilton, Rip.), you have to believe that things have gotten SO bad between players/coaching staff that the players felt they needed to send a strong message to upper management and that this was the best way to do so.   

    I’m not condoning the revolt.  I think all players involved need to be fined and suspended by the team.  This was exactly the wrong way to handle this.  You need to stay professional at all times and perfrom the job that you’re being paid to do to the best of your ability.

    Q must have done something really terrible, beyond minutes distribution and rotation indecision.

    • Feb 26, 20112:42 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Adam, you’re assuming everyone is acting rationally, a common mistake when viewing problems through the economic lens that you do. Maybe they’re just mad about the minutes distribution and rotation indecision and made a poor choice.

      • Feb 26, 20113:09 pm
        by Adam

        Reply

        After seeing reports of Rip turning down the Cavs offer, I did make the assumption that all players look through the same economic lens.  It may be an unfair assumption for some players, but you’ve got to believe with all the “this is a business”, “I’ve got to do what’s best for me” and “I’ve got to feed my family” cliches that they thrown around, it can’t be too far from the truth.

        I’ll give the benefit of the doubt for the younger guys (Stuck and Daye) that they just made a poor decision.  The vets, though, have been through contract negotiations before.  They know about being pricked and prodded by GMs about injuries, character issues, work ethic questions, etc.  They’ve got to know that this stunt is going to hurt their pockets when looking for their next job.

        You may be right, Dan.  Maybe these guys just are just mad about minutes and rotations.  But I’m sure this isn’t the first time they’ve come across a coach who they didn’t agree with.  So why do this now?  Why with this coach?

  • Feb 26, 20113:01 pm
    by Eric

    Reply

    I feel Joe D needs to fire Kuester and take over as duties as coach, really I would try to get rid of all the players that protested this game, this is the the last straw because they have completely alienated this team from the fan base.

    Get a coach in the offseason they can respect, Bill Laimbeer possibly, I don’t know who else they could get on the cheap.  He can show the players his rings, he won as a coach in the WNBA, he could win at all levels.  For one thing he will be a tough sonna of a gun, who will put his team in line, if not, they shouldn’t be on this team anymore.

    • Feb 26, 20113:18 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Eric, I can’t think of a quicker way for Laimbeer, if he ever becomes an NBA coach, to lose a locker room than show his team his WNBA rings.

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    Reply

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