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Not every player loves Maurice Cheeks

Maurice Cheeks, a former 76ers All-Star player, should appeal to the Pistons players who want a coach who is a competitor, open and honest. By all accounts, Cheeks is very likable as a person because he possesses all those traits and that should make playing for him enjoyable.

But this seems to have extended to a belief that all his players have respected him and played hard for him at all times. This is simply not the case.

Joe Freeman of The Oregonian:

Wells also “verbally abused” Cheeks twice during games before 2003, once earning a third-quarter benching and once receiving no punishment.

ESPN:

Bonzi Wells was suspended for one game in March 2003 for cussing at Cheeks during a practice.

Associated Press in November 2003:

The Portland Trail Blazers suspended guard Bonzi Wells for two games without pay and stripped him of his title as co-captain Tuesday after he cursed at coach Maurice Cheeks during a game the night before.

"It just gets old. I’m sick of it," Cheeks said at the Blazers’ Tualatin practice facility. "I’m sick of always saying he didn’t mean it and all that. Players have to be accountable for what they do and what they say."

Wells swore at Cheeks on his way back to the bench and stood on the sideline and continued a profanity-laced tirade. Wells sat out the final 16:17 of the game, and the Blazers quickly lost the lead. The Mavericks went on to win 105-98.

Cheeks, who signed a one-year contract extension last week, was still visibly angry Tuesday over the incident, just the latest for the embattled team.

"Disrespect is disrespect," he said.

ESPN in January 2005:

Trail Blazers forward Darius Miles was suspended by the team for two games Friday after a verbal clash with coach Maurice Cheeks during a film session the day before.

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith reported that Cheeks is contemplating resigning as a result of the incident. Cheeks has been frustrated all season by Miles’ frequent tardiness and other behavioral problems, Smith reported.

"He blew up in the film session," said Cheeks, who characterized Miles’ comments as inappropriate.

According to The (Portland) Oregonian newspaper, Miles repeatedly called Cheeks a racial epithet.

Brian Gomez of The Gazette in January 2007:

Allen Iverson said today that he probably wouldn’t have been traded to the Denver Nuggets if Philadelphia 76ers coach Maurice Cheeks had managed personnel better and listened to his input. Iverson said he received no response after telling Cheeks that Andre Iguodala wasn’t a good fit at point guard. He said he wanted Philadelphia to trade him after he realized “what I was saying didn’t matter to the organization and to the coaching staff.”

Asked if he could have prevented his relationship with Cheeks from souring, Iverson said, “Maybe if I didn’t complain about losing. Maybe if I would have continued to feel like it was OK to lose basketball games. Maybe if I didn’t have any pride. Maybe if I didn’t have any competitiveness in me. Maybe if I didn’t have any heart, I wouldn’t have said anything about it. “You lose 12 out of 14, 18 out of 20 basketball games, something needs to be done. Something needs to be said. You’ve got to look at something else besides Allen Iverson.”

E. James Beale of Philadelphia City Paper in December 2008:

On top of all this, the players are tuning out the coach’s advice. Next time you’re at a game, watch the huddle closely during a time-out: More often than not, the Sixers are glancing at the Jumbotron and leaning back in their chairs instead of focusing on their coach and his clipboard. It’s not that the guys don’t like Cheeks — they do — it’s that he’s become a fun uncle to them, someone they like but don’t see as a source of wisdom. The team continues to play hard, but effort only means so much when your opponent knows their plays and you don’t.

Update: Matt Barnes also had issues with Cheeks (beginning at 4:09):

Bonzi Wells, Darius Miles and Allen Iverson can be difficult on a head coach. But so can Iverson, Richard Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince and Rodney Stuckey, and that didn’t stop  Michael Curry, John Kuester and Lawrence Frank from being criticized for the disharmony that came with dealing with those Pistons.

Some of the details of players’ incidents with Cheeks – Wells repeatedly abusing him before being punished, considering re-signing because of Miles’ poor professionalism – also seem troubling. That doesn’t strike me as a coach who was capable of nipping these types of issues in the bud, but hopefully it won’t come to that.

Cheeks very well could connect with this group of Pistons and never have any personal problems with them, but to assume he will is to ignore history.

75 Comments

  • Jun 12, 20135:22 pm
    by Crispus

    Reply

    It should probably read “resigning” instead of “re-signing”

  • Jun 12, 20135:35 pm
    by XstreamINsanity

    Reply

    Ok, now you really seem to be digging for reasons to make people even more upset about this hire than may need to be.  Sexy hire?  Absolutely not.  Could it have waited longer?  Yes.  Is it done and over with?  Yes.  Will people digging through his garbage make Dumars or Gores release him and go after better candidates?  No.  Will people showing any ineptitude from the front office get Gores to remove Dumars any faster?  No.  The only things that are likely to come from digging up so much garbage is 1) the Pistons losing more viewers (I won’t say fans because fans will stay through it all) or 2) you’ll look like complete dung if he ends up pushing us in the right direction (I don’t think he’ll get a championship, but I’m not going to say he’s going to keep us a cellar dweller either).

    There’s a line between trying to show everyone all sides of something and beating a dead horse.  Most, if not all, Pistons fans aren’t thrilled by this hire.  I would have liked to gamble with Obradovic if that was even a real rumor.  I don’t think Karl was coming here, maybe Del Negro or Hollins, but nobody sexy is jumping at a coaching job where the tenure of its coaches doesn’t even exceed 2 years over the history of the franchise, let alone the last 7 years.  I haven’t seen one person think Cheeks was the best hire, say he will solve everything, or anything of that nature.  I’ve seen people trying to find out the positives because as fans, that’s what we’d like to hope for.  If you’re trying to quell people’s expectations, I think you’re going about it an entirely wrong way.  

    As you stated, those players aren’t easy to deal with and the Pistons also had those issues with some of it’s players.  But it should also be known that the “protests” given by the Pistons players weren’t of the same caliber as those that you mentioned on the Blazers or 76ers.  They’re also different players.  It’d be different if you said that Cheeks had a run in with Iverson, but Frank never had any issues with him.  We get it, you don’t like Cheeks.  What are you trying to accomplish with all of this garbage though? (asked earnestly).

    • Jun 12, 20136:45 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      “you’ll look like complete dung if he ends up pushing us in the right direction”

      I’d love that. I’m rooting for Cheeks, even if I don’t think he has the skills to succeed in the job ahead of him. I’ve been wrong before, and I’ll be wrong again. That isn’t going to stop me from writing the truth as I see it.

      “We get it, you don’t like Cheeks.  What are you trying to accomplish with all of this garbage though? (asked earnestly).”

      I’m trying to share information and insight about the man who will coach the Pistons next season so we have a better idea what to expect, so we understand his positives and negatives. Have most of these posts been negative? Yes, but that’s because most of his track record is negative. If most of track record were positive, my posts the last few days would have been positive.

      • Jun 12, 20137:38 pm
        by Drew

        Reply

        What do you think Cheeks should do addressing this upcoming season.  

      • Jun 13, 201310:25 am
        by XstreamINsanity

        Reply

        <b>Have most of these posts been negative? Yes, but that’s because most of his track record is negative.</b>

        I’m not sure how you can say “most” of his track record is negative.  Has he had run ins with players?  Yes,almost all coaches have.  However, with this post especially it feels like you’re worrying/emphasizing the minority situations.  If 95 of 100 guys that have played for Cheeks say they really like the guy, but 5 guys don’t (who are notorious for being instigators and having foul attitudes), I don’t see the need to make a lengthy article of it.  I’m pretty sure you could find as many good things to say about Cheeks as you could bad, and the same goes for ANY other coach.  Just depends on how important you think those good and bad situations are.

        • Jun 13, 201311:21 am
          by G

          Reply

          I think most of the posts Dan was referring to were the ones that brought into question Cheeks’ game planning and general running of the team. His track record there is NOT good. As far as handling players, I find these examples hilarious. Name a coach Iverson has played for that he HASN’T had issues with. Same with Miles and Wells.

          • Jun 13, 20131:58 pm
            by XstreamINsanity

            I’m working on digging up some statistical analytics to see how well Cheeks is at in game adjustments and overall effectiveness of his team, so hopefully I’ll find things for me to be more encouraged by.  But I agree, this post was hilarious.

  • Jun 12, 20135:44 pm
    by Mel

    Reply

    Each of those player aren’t even in the nba now. All bums Iverson had issues with Larry brown Too, so thats no surprise. Hopefully Stuckey will get traded and we won’t have to worry about him either. No ones saying Cheeks is the best coach. The guy may have some issues who doesn’t. But the guy must have done something right because Gores signed off for him. Look we’re complaining about getting Cheeks and there are teams getting rid of coaches that have winning records. We should question that more. Most of these coaches being fired now would be called retreads at this point. I’m glad we didn’t get Shaw ( nothing personal against him), I didn’t want nothing associated with Phil Jackson. I could see him later on writing a book about how he restored the Pistons. He’s a clown.     

    • Jun 12, 20135:59 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      “But the guy must have done something right because Gores signed off for him.”
      “I didn’t want nothing associated with Phil Jackson.”
      I have no idea how to square those two statements.

      • Jun 12, 20137:09 pm
        by CityofKlompton

        Reply

        Dan, I think you’re doing an excellent job. Keep up the good work.  

        For one thing, why would we expect every story to be all roses and sunshine when the Pistons haven’t reeled off more than 30 wins in the past four seasons?  Why should Dan stop writing about Cheeks? The team hasnt even held its press conference introducing the man yet so it is unquestionably a relevant topic still (and will be as long as he is our head coach.)  Let’s be realistic PistonPowered readers!  Secondly, nobody has quit bitching about Dumars since BEFORE we were a losing franchise so I don’t think you’ve got the right to start demanding a different tune.  Yours hasn’t changed for what’s approaching a decade now.

  • Jun 12, 20135:54 pm
    by Mike

    Reply

    I don’t like the hire, but writing this kind of stuff just makes you look bad.
    I hated Hamilton for the last 3 years of his time in Detroit. I disliked Prince for that time as well, and can’t say I’m a fan of Stuckey, either. But those guys don’t even compare to Darius Miles, Bonzi Wells and Allen Iverson in terms of misfits and coach killers.

    • Jun 13, 201310:16 am
      by Todd

      Reply

      Mike:

      I agree on point with you about the status of Bonzi, Darius, and AI as coach-killers above Stuckey and Prince, but I am starting to think that Rip Hamilton (as much as I loved his Piston years) might be a malcontent closer to the level of the previous three when he isn’t getting what he wants (see comments about Thibs in the playoffs). We have seen a direct inverse relationship between the talent of Prince and Hamilton and their ability to get along on a team.

      All that being said, just like any workplace – culture begins at the top and flows throughout an organization. As Mr. Davidson was nearing the end, the organization lost its anchor and they have been just floating along since that time. I had great hopes for Mr. Gores and still have hope that he can lead the franchise in a turnaround, but at this point, I believe that it might be best to cleanse the organization of some of the old blood and make a statement regarding a new direction.  

  • Jun 12, 20136:09 pm
    by piston moribund

    Reply

    hmmmm, petulant spoiled NBA players.  Players who have a history of bad behavior not getting along with their coach as a red flag pretty much excludes no one.  Yeah Dan, we know you don’t like the hire, thanks, the Horse is dead, no disrespect, but please could we move on, the deal is done and we are stuck with it for at least the next year or so.  At least the players and fans(most…maybe) will be excited for the start of the season.  The Vets are probably the main reason that Joe D is emphasizing good attitude.  Real life is depressing enough, reading about how a coach is disrespected by entitled assholes makes him a bad coach is even more depressing. 

  • Jun 12, 20136:12 pm
    by Mel

    Reply

    To make it simple, The Pistons didn’t need Phil Jackson to assist us. He has no respect for the organization. It’s like Tom Gores didn’t know about the Pistons Bulls rivalries in the 80′s. An second Tom Gores signed off to hire Maurice Cheeks, so there must been something he liked because he’s paying him millions to coach his team. So there’s nothing else we can do now but see how this all turns out.  

    • Jun 12, 20137:04 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      So Tom Gores made a mistake by hiring Phil Jackson, but we can feel good about Maurice Cheeks because Gores hired him?

    • Jun 12, 20137:11 pm
      by CityofKlompton

      Reply

      Didn’t Gores also sign off on Frank?  Haven’t we been having a Frank bash fest for the past two seasons? You make a fine point, sir.

  • Jun 12, 20136:19 pm
    by The Golden Child

    Reply

    “Dan Feldman, a fan-beat writer for the Detroit Pistons fan-site Piston Powered, should appeal to the Pistons fans who want a writer who is a informative, positive and engaging. By all accounts, Feldman is very likable as a person because he possesses all those traits and that should make reading his work enjoyable.
    But this seems to have extended to a belief that all of his readers have respected him and enjoyed his work at all times. This is simply not the case.”
    Sorry, can’t help myself. Dude, if you are waiting for the Pistons to sign a coach who could turn Darius Miles, AI and Bonzi Wells into interested, focused professionals determined to sacrifice their own wants and needs for the pursuit of a group-goal like a championship, you are going to be a mummy before you get your wish. But I like this game, the fans are on you and onto you on the comment boards and you are doing what I presume you think is the right thing, keep digging through the trash. G’luck with that. I have about 7 sites cue’d up to get my daily Pistons fix from, and your continual negative stories have moved this site from 1st to 7th in pecking order… …sooooo, not really sure where you are going on this one other than I’m starting to think, maybe, you aren’t a very cool person and are the kind of fan I’d prefer not to sit near during a game.
    You may return to throwing darts at your Joe D dartboard now…
    …/chuckle

  • Jun 12, 20136:20 pm
    by Mel

    Reply

    Matt Barnes another bad tempered idiot that I’m glad is not a Piston. You’re having fun with this I see. 

    • Jun 13, 20138:34 am
      by G

      Reply

      I’d have LOVED if the Pistons had picked Barnes up. He’s a solid defender at the 3 (not great, solid), and is decent on offense. He’s a hothead, but I’ve yet to see that get turned onto his own team. He’s had a positive impact pretty much everywhere he’s been.

  • Jun 12, 20136:26 pm
    by RyanK

    Reply

    I think this was the team known as the jailblazers?  Sheed, Bonzi, Damon all smoking weed at half time, confronting refs after the games, and many other incidents.  

    I don’t think he’ll be dealing with a group like this in Detroit. 

  • Jun 12, 20136:31 pm
    by steve in portland

    Reply

    I’m a Blazers fan and don’t follow the Pistons too closely. I only linked here from truehoop. I’d just say that y’all shouldn’t let the stories about Miles and Bonzi sour you on Cheeks. Those players were huge problems in Portland and you can’t realistically blame their behavior on Coach Cheeks. They had problems with Nate MacMillan and Mike Dunleavy too. I don’t think Cheeks is going to outcoach any of the premier minds in the league, but he’s a class act and you’ll feel good rooting for him.

    • Jun 12, 20137:24 pm
      by frankie d

      Reply

      blazer fans saw 2 different approaches to player insubordination.
      under cheeks, players cursed out the coach and basically disrespected him.  ultimately, that lack of discipline showed on the court and the team suffered as a result.
      under nate, there was one well-publicized incident with andre miller.  miller exploded on mcmillan during a practice with the media within earshot.  they reported on the incident immediately.  within a day or so, mcmillan had met with miller, dealt with the situation and it was done and over.  miller went on to become an extremely important part of the blazers’ team for the next year and a half and that incident helped to bring out and resolve problems that had festered since miller had arrived earlier that year.
      mcmillan’s teams reflected the fact that he understood how to maintain discipline in his locker room even in situations and with players who were notoriously difficult, like miller.  (there is a reason miller has bounced around so much even though he is such a quality player.)
      that is how a good coach with the ability to handle players deals with difficult players and situations.
      cheeks did not have a clue as to how to handle difficult players.
      the differences in the two coaches’  teams, respectively, was obvious to blazers’ fans. 

  • Jun 12, 20136:39 pm
    by RyanK

    Reply

    A group of model citizens listed above…  Dan further discredits himself by looking for dirt among the scum of the NBA.

  • Jun 12, 20136:51 pm
    by Grizz

    Reply

    Dan Feldman .. great great article .. To all those complaining, where the heck were you when Curry, Kuester, and Frank were hired?! I for one am grateful for Piston writers to show some balance. Feldman almost always positive about the Pistons. When you are afraid of the truth, something is wrong, with you!

    • Jun 12, 20137:13 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Thanks, Grizz

    • Jun 12, 20137:29 pm
      by frankie d

      Reply

      i concur with my fellow refugee from the old, defunct detroit news pistons’ forum, grizz!
      very much on target.  just very curious that so called fans do not want to get a full picture of cheeks.
      what is truly hilarious is that most of the good things that can be said about cheeks as a coach are encompassed in saying…he’s a nice guy…
      while there are reams of stories about bad stuff that happened during his stints in philly and portland.
       

  • Jun 12, 20136:52 pm
    by Grizz

    Reply

    edit: Feldman IS almost always positive about the Pistons.

  • Jun 12, 20136:54 pm
    by Grizz

    Reply

    … and how rare has it been to see any Piston writer be anything but a rubber stamp for whatever obvious bad moves Joe D has made??!!! .. This is what we have needed for years .. And if other writers had had the guts to report the truth, our team would be in better shape today ..

  • Jun 12, 20137:01 pm
    by Nick

    Reply

    Dan,
    I think your coverage (and opinion) of Cheeks is spot on, and it’s definitely the most thorough coverage I’ve seen anywhere. Hopefully he’s learned from his mistakes (unlikely, but maybe) and hopefully the Piston players mesh well with him (more likely). It’s incredible that we’re hiring this guy while Hollins, Shaw, Karl, and more deserving candidates are around. 
     
    Nick

  • Jun 12, 20137:36 pm
    by Drew

    Reply

    every coach in the nba who has been around long enough has had these issues.  look one can bring up a lot of these types of issues with McMillan as well.   We keep looking at these old issues but one question is that whether Cheeks has become a better coach during his stint at OKC.  if you are like me, you would believe that people can improve and learn from miRia soRia so 

    • Jun 12, 20137:36 pm
      by Drew

      Reply

      Last word was mistakes*.  Autocorrect typo

  • Jun 12, 20137:41 pm
    by Mike

    Reply

    That being said…Most of these players have severe emotional issues.

  • Jun 12, 20137:53 pm
    by RalphHau

    Reply

    Gee!  How much more dirt can Dan dig up about a coach that hasn’t had his first practice.  Mr Dan Feldman, don’t you think you should judge a coach by what he does here, when he does it!  Lay off Dan Feldman!

    • Jun 12, 20138:14 pm
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Time did not start once Cheeks was hired by the Pistons. What he did in the past can and should set our expectations and understanding of him here.

      • Jun 12, 20139:13 pm
        by Mike

        Reply

        What does an inability to get through to Bonzi Wells, Darius Miles and Allen Iverson have to do with setting our expectations for what he’ll be in the future? You don’t see all three of those players are rather special kinds of headcases that no coach ever got through to?
         
        This was an article you wrote to say “Hey, you know how everyone says the biggest strength of the coach I don’t want hired is that he has a great relationship with his players? Well, here’s examples of him not having those relationships with every single player, so he’s even worse than people are saying!” You didn’t need to write it. Cheeks’ resume is shady/questionable enough to hold your opinion without writing pieces where your star witnesses regarding the guy’s ability are Bonzi Wells, Darius Miles, Allen Iverson and Matt Barnes. Even if you honestly didn’t write this to make him look worse than you’ve already tried to make him (and, by that, I mean his resume is bad enough that simply laying it out is enough), you have to understand that writing something like this simply makes you look terrible.
         

        • Jun 13, 20138:06 am
          by Dan Feldman

          Reply

          It’s not a trial that I’m trying to win. You’re free to view Cheeks’ relationships with those players however you’d like, and if you want to blame any disputes completely on the player, that’s your prerogative.

          But there is a perception that Cheeks connects well with any player, even the most difficult ones,  and that’s simply not true.

          • Jun 13, 20138:45 am
            by G

            Can you name a coach that has never had problems with players before? I can’t. My reaction was pretty much “Really? Problems with Wells, Miles and Iverson? <Shocked>”.

            Although the Iverson story was interesting in that Cheeks tried Iguodala out at PG. I’d forgotten about that. Iverson, while pretty much a malcontent his entire career, brought up some good points. The Barnes story was interesting too. Either Cheeks was poorly executing a motivational tactic (it worked but not the way Cheeks would’ve wanted), or Cheeks was just being a dick. 

  • Jun 12, 20138:15 pm
    by Mel

    Reply

    I never said I felt or anyone else should feel good about hiring Cheeks I basically said lets move on. Gores is going to have his way regardless. I wanted Frank as coach but after watching him F up the team last season I saw he wasn’t the right man for the job. And I new he came in with a loosing record before coaching the Pistons. I gave him a chance to prove himself wrong. I’ll do the same for Cheeks. We all will do the same for Cheeks whether we like it or not. I understand it’s not much to write about now so we get alot of these curated post, but thats not telling the facts it’s just copying from other peoples work.

  • Jun 12, 20138:46 pm
    by Henry2

    Reply

    All those players you mentioned has no credibility.  It makes me laugh when I saw the list of players you named. 
    Same goes for you.  You have no credibility when it comes to analyzing coach, because two years ago you were singing praises about Frank when he was hired.  Truth be told we(fans) don’t know squat about hiring a NBA head coach, so stop acting like an expert.
     

    • Jun 13, 20138:08 am
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      So NBA GMs should get to hire coaches without any criticism ever? Who is qualified to analyze a hire?

    • Jun 13, 20138:47 am
      by G

      Reply

      <Yes, unless you’ve personally hired an NBA coach before, you’re not qualified to register an opinion>. Yeesh.

  • Jun 12, 20139:13 pm
    by Russell C

    Reply

    First, I think Cheeks will be a better coach this time around, just based on learning from his mistakes and staying involved in the pro game. But I have to say that the article from yesterday on corner three philosophy from five years ago and dealing with knuckleheads almost ten years ago strikes me as someone who has an axe to grind or someone who has run out of material to write about. I guess if I took the time to dig through enough old articles and grainy clips I could make anyone look bad. Maybe I could go through Dan’s old articles to see where he made typos or was just dead wrong in his insight.  

    • Jun 13, 20138:10 am
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      “ I guess if I took the time to dig through enough old articles and grainy clips I could make anyone look bad.”

      But that’s not what I’m doing. I’m not looking for negatives or positives about Cheeks’ past. I’m looking for telling and/or interesting aspects of his past. I’ve found more negative than positive, but that’s a result of the process, not the end goal.

  • Jun 12, 20139:15 pm
    by Russell C

    Reply

    “What he did in the past can and should set our expectations and understanding of him here.”
     That does not leave open the possibility that people can learn and change,

    • Jun 13, 20138:11 am
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Not at all.

      Cheeks can exceed our expectations. He can break his tendencies. He can change.

      That doesn’t mean we can’t analyze his past right now.

  • Jun 12, 20139:35 pm
    by frankie d

    Reply

    look at what the nets just did.
    they broke the mold and gambled and hired just retired jason kidd.
    since they fired lawrence frank, they went through one retread coach – and an interim – and now, even they’ve rolled the dice and taken a chance on a first time coach.
    kudos to them.
    while they have gotten their team back on track and back in the playoffs, by being aggressive and retooling their team, detroit is hiring…mo cheeks?
    (what NJ just did is similar to what i’d been advocating with a guy like derek fisher.  take a shot on a guy who is widely recognized as uniquely suited to be a head coach.  NJ just took their gamble.  too bad detroit didn’t have the balls to do something similar.) 

    • Jun 13, 20138:49 am
      by G

      Reply

      Agree, I thought that was a solid move by the Nets. They’ve gotta be willing to give Kidd a little rope though, because he’s learning on the job.

      • Jun 13, 20139:11 am
        by Dan Feldman

        Reply

        I wasn’t a fan of the Nets’ move, because they they probably could have lured a demonstrably good coach like Hollins, Karl or McMillan. I’m all for taking a risk when the alternative is a coach like Cheeks, but I wouldn’t have if I were the Nets.

        • Jun 13, 20139:59 am
          by G

          Reply

          You make a good point about Karl, but Hollins and McMillan are both in the medium-good (not great) range. I think Kidd is high risk/high reward which maybe the Nets didn’t need to do, but his ceiling as a coach is higher than Hollins’ or McMillan’s.

          I’m all for thinking outside of the box when it comes to hiring a new coach, and this certainly qualifies. 

          • Jun 13, 201310:31 am
            by Todd

            G and Dan - 

            The other day, I was looking back at the string of coaches in my lifetime for the Pistons and while I have fondness for only 4 (Daly, Carlisle, Brown, and Flip – who I am still mad they fired), I was reminded about the previous proclivity in professional sports (particularly baseball and basketball) for a player coach. While the game has changed significantly in regard to the amount of prep work that needs to be done by a staff prior to a game, I believe that some players have the ability to quickly transcend their role as player and easily adapt into a role as coach. 

            That said, I am not sure that Kidd will be the right person (I start thinking of Magic, more than Larry), but I certainly applaud the Nets ownership by bringing in an individual that they believe will galvanize a team, spur on its best player, and connect with fans. While many have remarked that Laimbeer will never coach in Detroit, I think about the credibility that his playing days and work ethic bring to the table (not to mention his basketball IQ) and I wonder if he could have been the right answer for shaping a young, growing team. Sadly, I believe that it is the reputation of Billy as a brawler and one disliked by other teams that has saddled him with the inability to get hired as a head coach in the league.

            I believe that Grant Hill and Shane Battier both have the ability to quickly get into coaching and perform at a high level if they so choose, given what they have proven throughout their years. Any other players that you would look at as being able to transfer well to the clipboard? 

          • Jun 13, 201311:17 am
            by G

            Billups. Absolutely Billups. Steve Nash maybe. Andre Miller. I know frankie d likes Derek Fisher (I don’t). Grant Hill, sure, Battier, sure… Heinrich might be ok, Emeka Okafor, Probably Ginobili too.
            Another type that does well are players who spent a lot of time on the bench & moved around in the league. It has to be a smart guy & usually one with less of a charismatic personality but still solid. Think Rick Carlisle, Lionel Hollins, Lindsay Hunter (who I always thought would be a decent coach). I don’t know the league as well as I should, but Nick Collison, Channing Frye… guys like that.

          • Jun 13, 20132:35 pm
            by frankie d

            bruce bowen and jameer nelson are two guys who come to mind immediately.

  • Jun 12, 20139:36 pm
    by frankie d

    Reply

    i should say, brooklyn, and not NJ…

  • Jun 12, 20139:55 pm
    by Mel

    Reply

    What does that say about Brian Shaw ? Who interviewed after him.

  • Jun 12, 201310:02 pm
    by frankie d

    Reply

    i don’t know shaw.  but i remember him as a player.
    i was never impressed with him as a player.  i always thought he should have been a better player than he was.
    he was very talented, but was just sort of ok, even though he had some decent moments.
    my guess is that he is the kind of guy who is just not that impressive once an owner sits down with him for the interview.  he’s been able to cultivate plenty of contacts, and has that long relationship with jackson, but it obviously don’t mean jack.
    imho, the most revealing snub was when LA bypassed him in order to hire first brown and then d’antoni.
    if any team knew him and had an idea as to whether he’d be a great coach, it would be the lakers.  and they’ve passed on him twice in a couple of years now.
    i really don’t get all of the love for shaw, by pistons’ fans, other than that he is a name that keeps getting repeated in the media.  nothing i’ve ever seen of him, in interviews, on the court, nothing suggests that he is anything special.
    apparently lots of gms and owners feel the same way. 

  • Jun 12, 201310:13 pm
    by Slowness

    Reply

    the world of the NBA lacks integrity and good reason, is based on who you are friends with, where you have worked, and how many cousins you have. It is not based on what is best for the franchise or the players, but what is best for those serving the players. and since those serving the players are limited… Good luck to any coach (especially those that have to deal with the Iverson type…)

    also good luck to any fan or reporter who expects more. 

     

  • Jun 12, 201310:57 pm
    by Mo Cheeks

    Reply

    Dan it’s VERY clear you don’t like me. I hope I prove you wrong. I’m gonna use you as influence when we are playing our games and I’m gonna look at you and say thank you…but I won’t be really saying thank you. If I didn’t like my job, me and you would be going at it. All you do is make fun of me! I can see it now: I’ll be drawing up plays and you’re gonna come at me and say  ”it’s not like you’re gonna use them in a REAL game” alright…

    • Jun 12, 201311:20 pm
      by Samuel Small

      Reply

      I mean seriously???

      • Jun 13, 201312:04 am
        by Mo Cheeks

        Reply

        Seriously. Dan is just gonna keep doggin me and thinking its funny. Dan’s riding me hard because he thinks its funny bro

  • Jun 12, 201311:59 pm
    by Mo Cheeks

    Reply

    I’m gonna edit this out the best way I can…

    Man…DUCK Bonzi!!! 

  • Jun 13, 201312:29 am
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    should have hired Grant Hill

    • Jun 13, 201310:33 am
      by Todd

      Reply

      Just wondered about that idea myself, however, I believe that Hill is not thought of (enough) as a Piston. I believe that the fans would embrace him moderately, but he is remembered more as a Magic or Sun than as a Piston.

  • Jun 13, 20133:05 am
    by goldengut

    Reply

    should of hired the coach of the grizzlies last year butt a little late for that, personnaly your grading cheeks on 2 teams that were subpar at best,but I see it this way if he can come in and drop our points per game given up to 95 a game and turn knight into a real point guard im all for it

  • Jun 13, 20134:38 am
    by T Casey

    Reply

    You know, if the Pistons weren’t afraid to tank for the best possible draft pick, I wouldn’t have as big a problem with this hiring. But, as it stands, we’ll likey continue underperforming and finding new reliably mind boggling coaching decisions to be pissed off at every other game. I hope he proves me wrong, but, just like with Frank, I’m not banking on it.

    Enjoy the ride, guys. lol 

  • Jun 13, 20137:55 am
    by Desolation Row

    Reply

    Nets hire Jason Kidd. To put this in perspective, more than one of the marquee coaches we’ve mentioned before will not be hired by any teams with a vacancy. Simple arithmetic. So that means either several of those coaches have decided temporary unemployment is better than coaching in Detroit or Dumars was just not patient enough with the hiring process.

    • Jun 13, 20138:49 am
      by Mo Cheeks

      Reply

      I would take the first option of temporary unemployment….oh wait…

    • Jun 13, 201310:17 am
      by Keith

      Reply

      To be fair, it seems to be Gores who has ruined our coaching the last several years. Gores was the one that chose Frank over Brown (and even if you don’t think Brown is great, he is a hell of a lot better than Frank). Gores was the one that seemed to be pushing for Cheeks and a quick hire. Dumars has enough he should be held accountable for, but he can’t stop an owner from meddling and making bad decisions when that is the guy writing the checks.

      • Jun 13, 201310:26 am
        by G

        Reply

        Hold on. We’re not excusing Dumars from this one. Cheeks was Dumars’ guy. He liked both McMillan & Cheeks, but every indication was that HE preferred Cheeks. I have heard nothing about Gores chiming in on this hire, other than getting Phil Jackson as a consultant.

        If Cheeks does well then Joe D deserves credit for seeing potential where it wasn’t obvious. If Cheeks doesn’t work out, Dumars deserves the blame too. We have to stop absolving him for everything because of 2004. He’s maxed out his credit on that one. 

  • [...] he had with Cheeks. That interview, and other incidents between Cheeks and his players can be found in this article. What effect this will have on the Pistons going forward is unclear, but there is no doubt that the [...]

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