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Maurice Cheeks gets second interview with Pistons

Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press:

Evidently, Mo Cheeks impressed someone during a recent phone interview with the Detroit Pistons.

The Oklahoma City Thunder assistant coach and former head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers and Portland Trail Blazers will have second interview with the Pistons today, according to two people with knowledge of the situation.

First of all, apologies to the Free Press for insinuating Cheeks didn’t previously interview. Does this mean Brian Shaw has already interviewed with the Pistons, too?

As far as Cheeks, I’m not terribly enthused. He didn’t coached a winning team in his last six seasons as a head coach, seemingly bringing the mediocre out of teams good and bad. Maybe the Pistons, a bad team lately, wouldn’t mind a coach lifting them to mediocre.

But even during his first two seasons with the Trail Blazers, teams that went 49-33 and 50-32, Portland didn’t win a playoff series. Plus, I don’t see the Thunder as a particularly well-coached team. To its credit, Oklahoma City got a lot from Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, individually and in tandem, but when Westbrook got injured, the Thunder had no answers.

If you squint hard enough, Cheeks looks like an alright coaching candidate. It’s difficult to view him as anything more than that.


  • May 22, 20134:43 pm
    by Wolverines23


    I agree with that assessment. Not sure Maurice Cheeks with this current Pistons roster can do a better job then Frank. I think Nate McMillan would be a better fit, when compared to Cheeks.

    But if the first interview was simply over the phone, then it’s fair to say that he deserves a second interview based on his resume.

    Would love to hear more about Brian Shaw though, which will probably have to wait until the Heat beat the Pacers. I think we will have a coach going into the NBA draft though, which should be fine. If Heat-Pacers go to seven games, the last game will be played on June 3rd, which is in about 12 days. I’d also like to see Mike Budenholzer fly down to Detroit for an interview, since last time it was Joe D, and that would show that Mike is a serious candidate. But again, Spurs are looking good, and will probably beat Memphis, so we’ll have to wait a month for that to happen.  

  • May 22, 20134:56 pm
    by Thiago


    Freep or Mlive have something on Dumars saying they are talking to more people than is being reported… Who are the secret candidates?

    Obradovic? Larry Brown? Isiah? 

    • May 22, 20135:57 pm
      by Bill Laimbeer


      Shh, it’s me! Don’t tell anyone…

  • May 22, 20135:57 pm
    by frankie d


    lets hope this is some type of misdirection. 
    cheeks is exactly the kind of mediocre retread detroit should be ignoring.
    worse, cheeks – and portland’s gms – were directly responsible for the mess nate mcmillan had to clean up.  
    players did not respect him, they directly confronted him in personal and ugly terms and there were times when that lack of respect spilled onto the court, as players sometimes blatantly ignored him when he trieid to call plays from the sidelines.
    to his credit, his approach was that the players were all grown men and you had to deal with them as such.  unfortunately, when some of his players clearly showed that they would not respond to that approach, he utterly lacked an alternative method of dealing with those difficult players – like zach randolph in his youth, reuben patterson, bonzi wells, qyntel woods, darius miles – and he ultimately lost control of his squad.
    if pistons’ fans thought the team had rebelled against kuester, that was child’s play compared to the nonsense that went on under cheeks.
    nice guy – who can ever forget him helping that scared little girl sing the national anthem -but a guaranteed .500 or less record – and chaos – if he’s your coach. 
    one of the LAST guys i’d hope the pistons to hire now. 
    if joe d is even considering going in this direction, god help pistons fans.  dumars has lost even more of his faculties than i’d feared. 

    • May 22, 20139:01 pm
      by The Rake


      Concur, completely. I don’t want any part of this guy around my franchise. 

      • May 23, 20138:58 am
        by G


        I like his odds of getting the Philly job (fingers crossed).

  • May 22, 20139:25 pm
    by MrCarter


    Solid candidate!! Hope he gets the job

    • May 23, 20138:59 am
      by G


      You have clearly never watched a game coached by Cheeks. He’s MAYBE 0.01% better than Frank.

  • May 22, 20139:30 pm
    by Mel


    I live in LA and the talk around here is that Nate McMillian might be a candidate for the Clippers job. By way of Chris Paul. I want Nate for the Pistons, he fits where the team is right now. And with a shooter and a couple of defensive minded players we could be back in business again.

  • May 23, 201312:25 am
    by domnick


    i like avery johnson…

    i think he is not on our current list of guys being interviewed..

  • May 23, 20139:59 am
    by ryan


    I would much prefer Nate McMillan to Maurice Cheeks. I don’t think Coach Cheeks is terrible but he never seemed to be able to get buy in from the crew in Portland.

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