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Sports Illustrated: Lawrence Frank would bring a defensive system, Mike Woodson would bring experience handling a difficult locker room

It appears that the Pistons have narrowed in on one of two candidates, Lawrence Frank or Mike Woodson, to be their next coach. I don’t think either guy qualifies as the worst hire the team could make, but both certainly have drawbacks as well.

Zach Lowe of SI.com did a nice job of looking at the strengths of each:

Frank is a defense-first guy filling Tom Thiboeau’s old role in Boston, and he’d bring that mentality — and a set of clear principles — to the Pistons.

Then again, this team was a mess of competing agendas last season, and Woodson is known around the league (by some, at least) as a strong voice capable of controlling difficult locker rooms. He had the Hawks playing borderline top-10 defense during his final two years with the team, and that was with Mike Bibby playing point guard and Al Horford working mostly as the team’s nominal center. Jamal Crawford wasn’t helping either. Woodson famously used a lot of switches to defend pick-and-rolls, a strategy that worked decently because his shooting guard (Joe Johnson) is a strong guy, and his two primary bigs (Josh Smith and Horford) are capable of sliding along with guards.

Could that work in Detroit, with Ben Gordon as Bibby, Rodney Stuckey as Johnson and Daye/Jerebko/Wallace/Monroe/Jason Maxiell switching onto smaller guys? Probably not as the team’s de facto strategy, but Woodson could mix and match philosophies. The Pistons face an interesting choice here.


  • Jul 14, 20115:16 pm
    by Shane


    Personally, I never liked either of the 2 as candidates for the Head Coach spot but I’m starting to warm up to Frank. If he is able to make our team defensive minded again then he would be fine

  • Jul 14, 20116:23 pm
    by Dan


    I disagree with Lowe on Woodson. He lost that Hawks locker room completely during the Magic series and it started during the Bucks series. With no roster changes of much significance this year and with a new coach who is merely average the Hawks performed much better in the post season despite still experiening the occasional lapse in effort in a game.

  • Jul 14, 201111:20 pm
    by Sebastian


    Gores and Joe should open the coaching search and interview more candidates.

    I personally believe that Joe should become the next Head Coach, since he is responsible for each member of the roster, either via drafting or free agency signing. Also, he is the only person who the players respect and have any repore with, as the coach whomever he may be will need to establish a relationship with the players.

    Also, Joe has the basketball IQ to lead and direct a team, yes coach the team.

    And, lastly, if Joe is interested in keeping his job as President of Basketball Operations, he better coach this team, because placing is fate into another person (Head Coach) he will surely be fired in 1-2 years.

    If Pop can do it, so can Joe.

    • Jul 15, 201111:06 am
      by Laser


      joe’s not coaching. period. i’d love to see it, but it’s not happening. and it probably wouldn’t be a good career move either, because when the team started losing (and BOY are they gonna lose), there will be nobody to throw under the bus.

  • Jul 15, 20115:49 am
    by Danny


    It should be a priority to move on from those same players that caused problems last year, so I dont see that being a big factor. Once again, give me Frank.

  • Jul 16, 20111:08 am
    by bob bayer


    both are bad choices  …see you in 2 seasons to see who was right..

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