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How Maurice Cheeks differs from Lawrence Frank

David Mayo of MLive had an interesting column analyzing the differences between Lawrence Frank and Maurice Cheeks.

After five consecutive days of practice and/or games, Frank would give the Pistons the next non-game day off. You could set flight schedules around it. Some of us did.

I asked Cheeks if he had any specific number of work days after which players should rest.

You guessed it, up in the air.

“I’m not going to kill them,” he said. “I’ll be reasonable in when I look at a day off. Have they been playing, been practicing and playing? I’ll be reasonable. I’ll think about when I wanted a day off when I was playing.”

If Cheeks wins, he’s flexible. If he loses, he’s disorganized.Right now, we’re just gathering facts, and we’ll fit them into the narrative once it emerges.

But seriously, Cheeks is probably both more flexible and less organized than Frank. To what degree that tradeoff helps/hurts the Pistons is yet to be determined, but I think Cheeks’ demeanor means the players will try harder to make his approach work than they did for Frank. So, it’s possible Cheeks hurts the Pistons in this regard but more than makes up for it by connecting personally with his players.

That’s what makes evaluating coaching, which so much of happens behind the scenes, difficult. At least Cheeks is nailing the aspect of coaching we will see.


  • Oct 8, 201310:47 am
    by Otis


    He certainly doesn’t seem to exude an air of authority. Everything I’ve seen so far makes me very nervous about his reputation, and he seems like the latest in a string of Pistons head coaches who should have stayed assistant coaches. We’ll see how it goes, but I’m not optimistic.

    • Oct 8, 20136:34 pm
      by Quin


      I look at what Kevin McHale has been able to get away with in Houston (playing Harden like a PG. Swapping starting Power Forwards every week. Giving up on games with 9 minutes left, just to put the starters back in with 3 minutes left). Like McHale, I think Cheeks could probably get away with a lot and reap some undue credit after our recent influx of talent, simply by being flexible. He also may benefit by having Chauncey as an influence over these young guys. I like the fact that he does not appear to be someone that will let ego get in the way of team chemistry, like a couple in that string of coaches that should have stayed assistants. If he’s disorganized, good for him. It probably means he’ll stay out of these guys’ way.

  • Oct 8, 201311:49 am
    by tarsier


    A coach nobody else wanted–and not because he is a complete unknown.

    So we get to hope the Pistons succeed in spite of their coach. 

  • Oct 8, 20132:15 pm
    by MIKEYDE248


    If he is smart enough to play his best players, he will be one step ahead of Frank already.  He also has more talent than Frank had, so even playing the non-starters should still give him better results.

  • Oct 9, 20136:29 am
    by swish22


    Rodney Stuckey logged the most minutes(30) last night in the exhibition game.   STRIKE ONE for the new coach!!!  I can’t believe another year of this overrated toxic bum getting big minutes!!  Lets see someone else on the floor to evaluate other than this tumor on our squad.    PATHETIC!!!!

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