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Josh Smith goes off the rails in Pistons’ loss to Pacers

Indiana Pacers 99 Final
Recap | Box Score
91 Detroit Pistons
Josh Smith, SF 37 MIN | 5-16 FG | 5-8 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 3 BLK | 4 TO | 16 PTS | -28

Unlike last game, Smith doesn’t get the same late-in-the-shot-clock reprieve for his poor shooting tonight. Even when Smith shot as the shot clock neared expiration, that was often because he held the ball until it was too late to do anything else. His passing was easily at a season-worst level. His defense of Paul George was ordinary at best, but Smith was active as a help defender.

Greg Monroe, C 35 MIN | 5-10 FG | 4-4 FT | 10 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 14 PTS | -22

The Pacers battered Monroe, but he still produced a quality game. Monroe was working hard defensively and even had a chase-down block of Lance Stephenson. The massive, and seemingly offensively improved, Roy Hibbert gave him trouble, though.

Andre Drummond, C 34 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 9 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 6 PTS | -18

The Pacers were much more concerned with getting back defensively than grabbing offensive rebounds, so Drummond had several easy boards. He contributed positively defensively, but this was one of his least impactful night.

Chauncey Billups, PG 24 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | -15

I knew I shouldn’t have talked my self into believing Billups could consistently replicate his opening-night performance. Billups looked old tonight.

Brandon Jennings, PG 36 MIN | 6-20 FG | 4-5 FT | 3 REB | 6 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 17 PTS | -7

Jennings was way too erratic during the game’s more-organized stretches, when both teams used their top players. But he provided a spark during the Pistons’ hectic 16-2 run late in the fourth quarter. Wait, don’t the Pistons already have someone for that role?

Luigi Datome, SF 12 MIN | 1-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | +18

Replacing Jonas Jerebko as the backup power forward, Datome could be dangerous in this role, because he’s such a skilled long-range shooter. A big question will be his defense of opposing bigs, but he worked really hard fronting Luis Scola and pushing Scola off his spots. That worked in a physical game like this one, but on other nights, that brand of defense – necessary given Datome’s size disadvantage as a four – could just draw a lot of foul calls. Oh, it would help if Datome actually made his outside shots (0-of-4 on 3-pointers). I can chalk up tonight to bad bounces and a small sample, but I’m at least aware of the possibility that Datome can’t shoot well, at least right now, while exerting so much energy on the defensive end. Overall, I found Datome’s performance encouraging. It just wasn’t good tonight.

Kyle Singler, SF 27 MIN | 3-7 FG | 7-8 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | +26

Singler played hard and made hustle plays on both ends. He seemed to provide exactly what the Pistons needed. His +26 is certainly a bit fluky, but chop that in half, and it still matches what appeared to be a really good effort.

Will Bynum, PG 16 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 5 PTS | +6

In his first game as a reserve this season, Bynum entered the game and immediately made his presence known – on defense. Prior to Bynum getting off the bench, the Pacers had been making the Pistons’ defensive rotations look particularly slow. But Bynum was a real pesky defender, and his backcourt steal and layup was a real gem. Overall, his defense checked in as just above average, but it wasn’t for a lack of effort. He completed an alley-oop to Drummond, of course, but Bynum’s offense was relatively unremarkable.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, SG 4 MIN | 2-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 5 PTS | +9

Caldwell-Pope didn’t enter until fewer than four minutes remained and the Pacers led by 17. He played well, though I’m not going to read too much into the sustainability of his shot-making after he hit a couple against a team that had already called it a night. But hopefully, this will give Caldwell-Pope confidence. That’s what he needs most.

Rodney Stuckey, SG 16 MIN | 4-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | -9

Stuckey repeatedly drove recklessly into the lane, but he didn’t draw any fouls, though he did commit two charges.

Maurice Cheeks

Going to a zone in the first half caught the Pacers off guard and helped get the Pistons back into the game. I also liked giving Datome – rather than Charlie Villanueva –a chance in place of Jerebko. But Josh Smith is hijacking the offense with his missed shots and turnovers. He needs a, even if just slightly, reduced role. The ability of Smith, Monroe and Drummond to each pass well helps the offense flow when those three share the court, but I’m not sure it’s enough. Too many of those passes are turning into turnovers, especially against a top defense like Indiana’s. Also, how did Cheeks not instruct the team to foul down five points with 32 second remaining? A comeback still would have been unlikely, but at least it would have been possible.

64 Comments

  • Nov 6, 201312:14 am
    by anacaniwelk

    Reply

    Tough to get assists when nobody can knock a shot down.

    • Nov 6, 20139:34 am
      by Danny

      Reply

      I totally agree with that, but when you repeatedly get to the bucket and suck in the defense and take horrible shots.  He could throw up some lobs instead of taking horrible off balance shots.  For our sake, I hope he is still learning the players.

    • Nov 6, 20139:40 pm
      by T Casey

      Reply

      I wouldn’t bank on it. Learning your teammates usually takes your fga down as you’re looking for them on offense trying to see what they can do.

  • Nov 6, 201312:18 am
    by anacaniwelk

    Reply

    Billups is done as a starter. Cheeks should just give him a few minutes now and then when the team is playing out of control, and late in games when the Pistons are up and the other team is fouling to stop the clock.  Need him at the free throw line late.

  • Nov 6, 201312:39 am
    by Moonchild

    Reply

    I agree, the SG starter should be 1) KCP or 2) Stuckey….If KCp started, the 2nd string guard play would be a huge advantage for the pistons against other teams second string guards….J Smith definitely needs to post way more, Jennings wasnt great by any means, but lets not forget this is his pre season…..On the plus side the pistons showed heart, which i honestly haven’t seen for 5 years now, so that was great to see…..The Pacers are a legit contender, so this wants a terrible performance by the pistons at all, and considering there is alot of negatives in this game for us, it shows our true potential to only lose by single degits.

    • Nov 6, 201312:58 am
      by Otis

      Reply

      The only potential revealed here is your true potential to see things through Piston-colored glasses. This was an atrocious game. The starters were so bad it’s scary. The holes they dug were murder. The only times the Pistons even got in the game at all is when Cheeks went away from our Big Three. You know, the three big men who are supposed to be our strength. Our ability to beat the Wizards and Celtics is meaningless. The only thing that matters is how we play against the top half of the league, and we failed both of those tests. This team is wildly out of balance. Yes, it’s only been four games, but I’ve seen all the bad signs I expected so far. If your team is at its best when you go away from the very thing that makes it unique, you probably don’t have much true potential at all.

      • Nov 6, 20132:21 am
        by Ryan P.

        Reply

        Pistons did play pretty poorly and sloppy vs. Pacers.  1st and 3rd qrts were absolutely horrid.

        I’d disagree on the “failed” Memphis test though.  Sure, stones lost the game but the big three played pretty well in that one.

        Remember though, Dre and Greggy haven’t played much with each other yet…very little last season and it’s just 4 games in with this season. 

        Ok, what if the BIG three fails…or isn’t perfect (gasp)? That’s not the end of the world since it’s a damn good rotation where each one can still play upwards of 30 mnutes a gm.  And let’s all remember too that George put a good beating on them.  He’s a superstar.  It happens.  He makes others better and he also has already damn good teammates.  A bad game for Detroit tonight…yes it was (second in a row tho).  But I liked the fight in these guys and see the potential.

        • Nov 6, 20132:23 am
          by Ryan P.

          Reply

          …the potential, meaning, the starters won’t always be that bad together. 

          • Nov 6, 20133:58 am
            by Otis

            We can agree to disagree. I don’t think you can keep trotting out all these big guys on the same time, certainly not against the kinds of teams we’ll need to go through for an eventual championship. I need to see a lot more. They loaded up the paint against our big lineup, and we don’t have enough proven shooters to inspire confidence. If this four game sample is the norm (beat bad teams, lose in embarrassing fashion to good ones) then I don’t think this team has any real potential. They need more balance. We might have the worst perimeter in the league.

      • Nov 6, 20133:10 am
        by Max

        Reply

        Memphis and Indiana are the two best defensive teams in the league other than possibly Chicago and have huge frontlines to matchup with Detroit’s unique advantage.    Looking forward to see how the Stones match up with the champs. 

      • Nov 6, 20139:20 am
        by T Casey

        Reply

        @Otis, I don’t think our problems weren’t much related to our front court. Other than Paul George, the matchup was pretty much even. The problem was we didn’t feed the players who were making buckets. Smith and Jennings horrendous shooting was the biggest problem for us. Partly, having KCP may have helped on George, but you just can’t have 2 guys combining for 11/36 shooting and expect to have a chance. That was the starting lineups biggest problem imo.

        • Nov 6, 201311:54 am
          by Otis

          Reply

          With all due respect, I think you’re judging based on second-hand analysis and the box score, rather than what actually happened on the court. The starting lineup was completely ineffective as a whole during the first quarter, then the bench dug us out of that hole, then the starters were ineffective for the third quarter, and they were ineffective when Cheeks briefly went to them in the fourth. The reason Jennings and Smith took so many shots and Drummond and Monroe took so few has something to do with the fact that those guys are gunners and prone to overshoot, but it had more to do with what Indiana was giving them. Smith especially is going to get unlimited chances this season to shoot open threes, because teams want him taking that shot. Yes it’s up to those guys and the coaching staff to rein them in, but that’s what Indiana was giving them. They took away the paint to the best of their abilities, just like most legitimate teams will. If you count how many touches Monroe got, the answer is “a heck of a lot more than 10,” but he defers all the time because he can’t plow his way through four bodies every possession and throw up a prayer like he likes to do.
           
          If you want Monroe to go out and get you a bunch of buckets like he’s done the last few seasons, you need a wide open floor for him to operate with, and so that when he passes out of double teams, opposing defenses will have a long way to go when they rotate. You want them spread out. Same goes for Drummond connecting on lobs. You need that open floor. That’s why these guys don’t complement each other, and Smith doesn’t complement the two of them. When your three best players all score around the basket, the help defense is never far away and doesn’t have much ground to cover when they rotate. Crazy as it sounds, the offense was better off with Daye and Charlie spacing the floor and one of those guys doing damage in the middle. The best offensive flow this team has had in the last five years was that second unit with Bynum, Dre, Daye, Charlie and Stuckey. FAR less talent than our current starters, but it highlights the value of structure and chemistry.

          • Nov 6, 201310:31 pm
            by T Casey

            First, we’re all basing our statements off of second-hand analysis, unless somebody here is actually a part of the Pistons organization. Second, there have been many stretches where Monroe doesn’t touch the ball for 3-4 posessions, even after he’s shown that he’s feeling it offensively to instead feed a cold Josh Smith as if he’s on fire. Does Monroe have a tendancy to dish the ball back out a bit much at times? In past seasons I’d say “yes” emphatically, but so far this season I haven’t seen it enough to where it looks like a problem. Sometimes the look you want just isn’t there on offense. In which case, it’s better to dish the ball back out than to constantly chuck up bad shots because guys can’t recognize the difference between a good look and a bad one which is exactly what we get when Smith and Jennings are dominating the ball.

            To the point of our front court co-existing. Does they court compliment each other perfectly? No, but all the analysis in the world won’t change the fact that when you’ve got two inefficient, low iq chuckers leading your offense, you’re going to struggle to score against quality defenses. I don’t care what the rest of your lineup looks like. Think about it like this, our big men produced at a very similar pace to Indiana’s bigs, who right now are part of the best front court in the league. So that’s not bad.

            The biggest problems were that, the people we threw at George were too slow to keep up with him, our guards didn’t do a good enough job of spreading the floor and knocking down open shots, and two of our starters combined for 11/36 from the field. Some of those problems could be remedied with better decision making. Throwing KCP out there on George may have been the look we needed to slow him a bit and might have helped us spread the floor on offense as well. And then on offense, the coach may have to begin calling more plays if the pg has shown he can’t recognize what plays should be run and who should be getting the ball and when

            But, borrowing from frankie d, when 3 of your most important pieces, Cheeks, Smith, and Jennings, are all clueless, we may just be s.o.l for the time being. So I would expect to see Smith and Jennings continue to shoot us out of winnable games for the forseeable future.

          • Nov 7, 20131:01 am
            by Otis

            I’ll keep this brief, because I don’t want us fighting.
             
            1) It’s not “second hand” information and analysis if you watched the game and drew your own conclusions. I was just saying that it sort of sounded like you weren’t really thinking for yourself but echoing others. Maybe I was wrong, but that’s how it felt.
             
            2) Again, Jennings and Smith are as advertised. They’re prone to taking bad shots and just plain shooting too much period. Teams are going to defend us (especially that starting lineup) by loading up on the paint, ensuring that Jennings and Smith get as many opportunities as possible. It’s on Cheeks, Jennings and Smith to keep that in check, but this is going to be a recurring theme as long as we’re trying to build around two centers and a power forward. Smith is out on the perimeter trying to be a wing, but a shift to power forward would change his usage. Similarly, Monroe and Drummond are going to be getting in each other’s– and everybody else’s– way on offense until Monroe becomes a threat to hit outside jumpers on the reg.

  • Nov 6, 201312:58 am
    by Chabvis

    Reply

    I basically agree with all the grades other than Stuckey and Datome. The only thing Datome did wrong was miss his open 3s. He put a ton of effort into fronting Scola and West and ran the court well. I would definitely prefer to see him out there rather than JJ at the moment, assuming that he is the shooter that everybody is saying he is.

    Stuckey was brutal. He drove recklessly over and over again getting two charging calls, getting T’d up after driving into a defender completely out of control and not getting bailed out, and then driving recklessly to the hoop some more. It is so demoralizing seeing the ball get kicked out to a wide open Piston guard only to realize that it is Stuckey that is about to brick a 3. I know he made one in this game, but it just seems like a waste to have him out there with this team. We have 3 other guards that can handle the ball (Jennings, Chauncey, Bynum), so we don’t need him out there for his ball handling. What we need the off guard to do is knock down open shots and play tough defense. So far this year, Stuckey has scored reasonably well and put in a very solid effort defensively (although in this game I would give him a D grade overall), but he will never be able to knock down open shots. It has never been a part of his game and won’t be anytime soon. At least some of those minutes have got to go to KCP or even Singler at the 2 and Datome at the 3. We need to get these shooters on the floor. 

  • Nov 6, 20131:27 am
    by Jake

    Reply

    Your grade for Datome seems based totally off results, while ignoring process. Datome put up a few solid, open 3-pt looks, that were fractions of an inch off. Acting like guys can decide when their long-range attempts go in or are just slightly off is silly. Datome put up solid, open attempts in the flow of the offense. Don;t penalize him for his long-range shots being fractions of an inch off.

    • Nov 6, 20138:15 am
      by Tim Thielke

      Reply

      Seeing someone play smart is certainly encouraging and a positive sign for things to come. But Datome missed most of his shots. It was a bad game, no matter how fluid the mechanics.

    • Nov 6, 20139:12 am
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      “Your grade for Datome seems based totally off results”

      Yes

      “Datome put up solid, open attempts in the flow of the offense. Don;t penalize him for his long-range shots being fractions of an inch off.”

      So I should give him a B this game, but also a B when he makes all his shots, because they were a fraction of an inch on?

      http://nowajogger.blogspot.com/2013/03/a-quarter-inch-other-way-and-youd-have.html 

      • Nov 6, 201311:09 am
        by Jake

        Reply

        “So I should give him a B this game, but also a B when he makes all his shots, because they were a fraction of an inch on?”

        If you are trying to be reasonable, yes.  If you are just trying to grade results, while ignoring process, then no.  If you were grading Tigers games, would you give Cabrera a D when he went 0-4 with 3 lineouts?

        • Nov 6, 201312:00 pm
          by Otis

          Reply

          I don’t think these are exactly analogous. If you make solid contact and hit a line drive straight at someone, that’s luck. Sure, maybe the defense had you played perfectly so you’d hit it right to someone, but it has more to do with luck than anything. Gigi’s misses had to do with shot mechanics. He missed the shots. They were wide open looks and he missed. The proper baseball analogy is if Cabrera rolled over on three ground balls to the short stop, in which case you would give him a D. That’s what happens when you’re an inch off in baseball. You pop it up or hit a ground ball. If you scorch a line drive and it happens to find someone’s glove, that’s bad luck.

  • Nov 6, 20131:51 am
    by Mel

    Reply

    This is the 4th game of the season, so there are going to be many games like this until the chemistry gets worked out. This was the first full game that the team has been healthy. Now Cheeks can start  really seeing what combination of players to play together. We all have to wait about about 20 games to see some fluid chemistry, not a bad game considering we have 8 new players in our 4th game and still give Indiana a good game. Now I believe KCP should guard George. Whole different game.

    • Nov 6, 201312:04 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      Hi Mel. Have you noticed, by chance, that none of our opponents have been experiencing these chemistry issues? I mean, Washington has some new faces and wasn’t entirely healthy last year. Boston has a whole new guard in there. Both of those teams were outmatched, but their chemistry looked just fine to me. How many games of this would you say it should take before chemistry is no longer an excuse? 82? Maybe the chemistry isn’t there because the pieces don’t fit. Just throwing it out there…

  • Nov 6, 20132:12 am
    by Sergio's Fried Chicken

    Reply

    Im tired of bynum and stuckey same old thing every year and billups is about done. Its time to move on with Kcp at the 2 guard period he is better than stuckey and bynum right now. can we get TMicth some minutes please i would love to see him as a backup high energy Pf.

    • Nov 6, 20138:21 am
      by Tim Thielke

      Reply

      More minutes for KCP are probably just a matter of time. Mitchell playing more is a bit of a longer shot.

    • Nov 6, 201310:06 pm
      by JamesJones_Det

      Reply

      I agree KCP should get some minutes but better than Stuckey and Bynum???  What games have you been watching?  Just because he hit two open jumpers tonight doesn’t mean he’s better than anyone.

      Does no one in Detroit ever learn from watching rookies year over year over year?  Other than Drummond who looked like a stud in his first Summer League game all of these guys have turned out to be exactly what they looked like their first year.  Yes to the get smarter, learn a couple of moves and add fractions to their shooting percentage… yes, but do they go from shooting 20% to shooting 50%, NO.  Stop playing NBA2K and come back down to reality. 

  • Nov 6, 20132:23 am
    by Some Dude

    Reply

    Billups is struggling, Stuckey is playing relatively well. But no doubt KCP needs to start, he provides everything more and a bag of chips over the other guys. Even though he only played 4 minutes, it was a damn impressive 4. I think the “PLAY KCP” campaign needs to be kicked into high gear.

  • Nov 6, 20132:39 am
    by Trent

    Reply

    Really loved Gigi’s game. He didn’t look out of place and his catch and shoot mechanics look flawless!

  • Nov 6, 20133:31 am
    by swish22

    Reply

    I’d give Cheeks a failing grade here for not being able to get better play on the perimeter. His lack of using timeouts during some runs also is inexcuseable.   This was just plain ugly as far as offensive motion and intellect in general.  Pretty obvious Billups should be an assistant coach  and we need to let the young but very talented KCP play at least 20-25 minutes a night.  Watching Rodney Stuckey and Josh Smith going one on one or chucking threes in the fourth quarter is the last thing most of us want to see. And as far as relentless Rodney taking it to the rim, I’ll repeat again he’s NOT going to get calls from the referees like he did as a rookie or year two.  They’ve seen him and he’s not high on the totem pole.  With all that being said there were some positives, our intensity was pretty solid and this was a game we really didn’t figure to win against a very good Pacers squad.  Andre will remember Hibbert’s big grin after he snuffed him.  I think it will motivate him for the rematch’s.   Hopefully they can all sit down watch the film and realize this dribble crazy offense isn’t leading us anywhere but the lottery.  

  • Nov 6, 20133:32 am
    by pistons moribund

    Reply

    The Pacers are a really good team.  Against an active defensive team with a defensive center, the lack of outside shooting stood out.  There was no ball movement and the pick and roll defense was awful.  There was good protection around the paint area but the perimeter defense was awful, especially once someone got into the painted area, its hard to recover and led to a lot of open shots.
    Basically the Pacers proved that they are a really good defensive team and the Pistons rotation without an outside shooter will hurt them.  MFWB is a huge defensive liability and once his man blow by him, its 5 on 4.  Stuckey plays much better when he decides to score instead of trying to draw contact. 
    At least GiGi and KCP got to play and seem to make an impact on defense.  KCP should be in the game as the first guard off the bench.  At least in the next game to defend Westbrook.  MFWB is going to get schooled. 
    In years past, this team would have folded but this one kept fighting till the bitter end.  Still entertaining to watch despite the loss.  Progress?  Going to be dipping under .500 really soon. 

  • Nov 6, 20134:57 am
    by Adam

    Reply

    come on worst perimeter in the league this team is building we can expect them to win all these big games straight away plus we have assests now which mean future moves can still happen  

    • Nov 6, 201312:13 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      I’ll believe that this team is “building” as long as February doesn’t come and go without a move. Adding Smith and Jennings took up most of our money and flexibility. They don’t get a draft pick this year unless they somehow land a top 8 pick, meaning this season will have been a disaster. Charlie and Stuckey come off the books after this year, but most of that money is going to go to Greg Monroe so he can continue to produce at the same level but make four times more money. Basically, barring a significant move, you have the flexibility to add one medium sized contract if this is your core. So where are these assets? The flexibility I see is trading Monroe, and I don’t think Dumars has the stomach for it.

      • Nov 6, 20132:11 pm
        by Anthony

        Reply

        I know it’s not likely at all, but honestly if I had to pick someone to trade, it’d be josh smith. Id rather have a banger down low like moose, than an aging athletic 4 who likes to shoot. 

        • Nov 7, 20131:11 am
          by Otis

          Reply

          Personally, I think it would be a net gain to trade Moose instead of Smith. Mostly because I think Monroe could fetch a hell of a lot more. Each guy definitely has his strengths and weaknesses, but between their contracts and the fact that Smith is a power forward, defense oriented, more athletic… I think he’s a better fit next to Drummond. And I really think he could be a special player in the right environment, but playing SF is all wrong. He’s more of a team defender than a man-on defender (as evidenced by some career nights for opposing SFs) and he won’t have to rotate too far off his man to defend the rim if his man is a PF and not a SF. But when you think about the haul you could get for Monroe, a 23 year old 16/9 center who’s under control? You should be able to get a great wing and a first rounder. Smith might be tradeable, but not for that kind of haul. Also I just happen to think that this team lucked into two centers, and I think you probably have to pick between Moose and Dre if you want to build the best possible team around one or the other.

  • Nov 6, 20136:12 am
    by MrBlockedShot

    Reply

    We had a tough test yesterday, against probably one of the best defenses around the league. We hadn’t won Indiana for some games lately, have a lot of new players which are not playing at their best yet, and the defeat was something one could expect. I know we have a small sample of games yet, but the problem here is that the team has been playing the same way against all teams since the preseason’s tip-off: too many turnovers and disastrous from the perimeter on most of the games. When a team is mediocre we find a way to win them, in most cases. When a team is average or above, we struggle a lot. I think Billups has to take a reserve role, KCP should start and we must live or die with him on the court, Jennings will be ok cos he’s not a regular shooter and he will have games like this, Datome might get the starting SF if he is regular enough and hits his outside shots. Maybe it’s time for Cheeks to sit down Drummond or Smith and play with Jennings-KCP-Datome/Singler-Smith-Monroe? Stuckey and Billups should be our backup backcourt, they should be more than efficient against the vast majority of second units. Can’t see playing time for Bynum on most nights.

  • Nov 6, 20137:31 am
    by Javell

    Reply

    Our problem was closing out on the open threes.. Also kcp needs to play… Willbymem has to get out of the rotation… And chauncey has to close close games 4 us… He has 2

  • Nov 6, 20137:39 am
    by Corey

    Reply

    Gigi looked great. His shot WILL start to fall and he did everything else very well for his first real nba action. 

    the big 3 looked terrible together. Although it will help a some when we put two guards that can both shoot on the floor with them. KCP needs to start. He’s the only guard on the roster with a chance of giving what they need- aggressive, effective D and 3 pt shooting. When we start playing Singler and Datome and KCP a lot, the spacing will improve. 

    On the plus side for the big 3- when we have any 2 of them in with shooters, the team is a lot better. Being able to have two of them in against backups provides major domination opportunities. We just need a coach strong enough to do it.   

    Uhoh…

    although, at least he made the switch to Datome. I hope that lasts. He looked like a veteran out there. 

    • Nov 6, 201312:17 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      Chauncey and Jennings are two of our better three point shooters. The problem is not that “our two best three point shooters” aren’t on the floor with them. It’s that we ONLY have two shooters out there with them. Frankly, I’m not sure there are two three point shooters in the entire league who are good enough to make this lineup live up to the players’ individual potential. Almost everyone puts three shooters on the floor with two bigs, and when they don’t, they go small and make it four shooters. At some point we need to acknowledge this.

  • Nov 6, 20138:25 am
    by David

    Reply

    This was a glass half full game for me, what I saw is the defense was good in the 2nd and 4th quarters with that being said we were getting the turnovers, just couldn’t do anything with it. Smith also should have took the ball to the basket more and tried to draw fouls. I wish Cheeks would have went to KCP a lot earlier we could have used his defense and energy overall. 

  • Nov 6, 20139:13 am
    by T Casey

    Reply

    Maybe it’s partly on the coach, but I wouldn’t mind seeing Monroe assert himself more when he’s in the game. But, one way or another, we’ve got to stop leaving the offense in the hands of the two lowest iq players in the starting lineup.  Smith and Jennings have to know when to stop shooting and get the ball to the players that are making plays. This is the 2nd game in a row against a really good team where Monroe has had success with his matchups on the block, but no one continues to feed him the ball but maybe Chauncey. KCP needs more minutes. He can shoot, can get to the rim, and is a quick, pesky, and smart defender already. His shooting not only would’ve helped stretch the floor, but he might have been our best bet against PG as our 3′s were all too slow too keep up with him.

    Cheeks has got to begin making better adjustments in games and not just sitting there quietly watching play. That’s been one of my big issues watching him for some time. It’s clear he has these guys motivated and I love that, you can def see it on the court, but the in-game decisions have to be better if they’re to make the next step and start beating some of these quality teams. 

  • Nov 6, 20139:19 am
    by Vic

    Reply

    I think the glass is half full too… I just hope the coach is not empty.

    They have the players to win against the elite teams, they just won’t play them.

    Its obvious how much better the game flows when Singler, Datome, KCP were playing.

    againt Memphis Stuckey & KCP were dominant, the game fell apart when he benched them for Billups and Bynum.

    The starting lineup is 2 point guards, 2 PFs, and 1 center – NO WINGS. You can get by with 1 wing, but not with zero, and not against the elite teams.

    You can’t play 4 point guards against the elite shooting guards and small forwards in this league. 

    • Nov 6, 201312:21 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      These may sound like minor quibbles, but: For one thing, the starting lineup is not 2 PGs, 2 PFs and a C, it’s 2 PGs, 2 Cs and a PF. Also, the flow of the game with Singler, Datome and KCP had more to do with the fact that they weren’t playing alongside all three of our bigs than anything. Play Singler at SF and put one of our bigs on the bench, and the team is going to flow much better. The early returns on Super Sizing the Pistons have been bad.

  • Nov 6, 201310:26 am
    by Rodrick

    Reply

     
    I thought the guard play sucked tonight to much penetration allowed by them tonight we played pretty good defense in the paint, the pacers just hit a lot of shots tonight. Also Josh Smith could not hold PG next time you cant start that front court if your going to put josh Smith on PG. I was glad to see Gigi play tonight he will be fine next game. Good game really enjoyed. I am frustrated with Maurice Cheeks because you know coming into this game the pacers guard can shoot yet he did not let KCP play to help guard those guards we really could have used him tonight

     

  • Nov 6, 201311:38 am
    by Windy

    Reply

    Billups is the stabilizer, he can hit FTs, help run the O and slow the game down for us…Jennings is what he is, streaky, pesky, street ball type of player, fading away on wide open jump shots…Bynum is some instant energy but not much more to let him be playing 25min, guy should play 12 min at best…Stuckey is the enigma because he goes through these games where he looks like a beast then looks total garbage, I hope we can cut ties with him soon and let KCP fill that role…

  • Nov 6, 201311:51 am
    by Windy

    Reply

    I would rather go through the growing pains of KCP than the same old pain with Stuckey…our future is Jennings and KCP so let it ride…at least KCP poses a threat as a shooter on the floor

    • Nov 6, 201310:20 pm
      by JamesJones_Det

      Reply

      Finally a KCP argument that makes sense.  Thank you!

      People on this board look at KCP like the next Ray Allen which he is not.  He actually reminds me more of a Morris Pererson with better defensive awareness.

  • Nov 6, 201312:01 pm
    by Windy

    Reply

    Max your right that what makes us unique is having the three big men but saying it doesn’t work is not right…Having the big three doesn’t mean we have to play them together all the time to be effective, there will be stretches with them all together on the floor where they look like monsters and other where two of them are on and they play extremely well…Having the option of putting the three of them together and mix matching is what makes us possibly special…considering its a new team I think overall they have meshed well, we scored huge in the paint and a lot of TO have come from them tryin to make the extra pass which I can live with…last night was ugly all around but I found more so on the offensive end where guys just settled for ugly shots…maybe they were worn out, mate they were rattled but when Smith is chucking 3 straight triples and Moose is not even looked at in the post something is up…it will be a crazy ride this year but so far I think the Big Three have done well and scored a ton of points in the paint…high percentage shots is what we need and so far those three have been pretty good…

    • Nov 6, 201312:23 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      The only time you’re going to be able to put all three of these guys on the floor together and see them DOMINATE is when they’re steamrolling D-League competition like the Celtics. They’re not going to be able to bully any of the teams we’ll have to go through en route to an eventual championship. This is not a formula for success.

      • Nov 6, 20132:48 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        The Heat’s Achilles heal is that they can be bullied and destroyed on the boards.  

  • Nov 6, 201312:52 pm
    by bean sprouts

    Reply

    Vogel called a timeout when the Pistons went up 8-6 in the 1st quarter.
    In the third, the Pistons were up 44-40, but then after three garbage possessions they were down 2. But Cheeks still didn’t call a timeout for another 4 or 5 possessions and by then the Pacers were up by double digits. This is not a cohesive unit that has proven they can figure it out on their own! Call a T/O Coach!

    The Pacers are an elite team and we can learn a lot from their offense. They space well and practice good fundamentals – making the extra pass, taking what the defense offers and exploiting the weaknesses (Paul George was going to win this game from the get-go… he is nasty). Offense should be easy, just keep making the right decisions and good shots will appear.
    In this context, I was fine with Chauncey’s game. His shots were within the flow of offense and he has an understanding of what team offense looks like (that pass he had to Andre in the 3rd Q (?) was dirty, too bad Drummond was not ready) and I like the way he directs the offense.
    WAY too much perimeter dribbling by Smith, Jennings and Bynum. Half of our half-court possessions (it seemed) we are not even starting the offense until 10 or more seconds were gone because of these dudes are just puttering with ball, considering whether to break down their guy off the dribble, while everyone else is waiting for the play to start. Josh Smith should have his 3-ball card revoked. End of story on that issue. Jennings can get to the rim, he just needs to commit earlier, or only drive on the catch. With the bigs we have – and the attention to the rim they create – we actually can space with 16-foot jumpers too… It just takes a few extra passes to get the defense moving.
     
    Finally, onto the biggest positive: defensive pride. It was great to see Detroit protect the rim with such a passion against a formidable opponent. Yes, our perimeter D was below average, but there were very few easy layups allowed and we for the most part did it without fouling. I love chip-on-the shoulder Detroit defense and you could see it getting under Indiana’s skin. It’s just too bad they have Paul George.

  • Nov 6, 20131:19 pm
    by Windy

    Reply

    With Stuckey and CV coming off the books I believe it will open up about 16.5mil, Monroe is making 4mil and maybe the pistons pay him the max at 15…that gives us about 5mil to play with…a guy like a Korver would do wonders for this team…

    Our guards need to hit shots period to help relieve the Bigs…if the 3s are not going down it will really hurt this team more than others…

    Mixmatching the three bigs will be what make this team special possibly…I think people make too much of who starts…there are plenty of minutes for the three bigs to be on the floor together or two at a time…

    Im not against having to move Monroe, but I doubt we would get back the same quality of player…if Portland wanted to throw Nick Batum and Myers Leonard I would be down for that…or at least something along those lines 

    • Nov 6, 20132:54 pm
      by Max

      Reply

      Based on the early returns I’d rather see Smith traded.  Also, I’d like the Pistons to play Datome and KCP more before making any trades to figure out how viable either of them could be as starters because that should have an impact on who the target of any trade would be. 

      • Nov 6, 201310:23 pm
        by JamesJones_Det

        Reply

        Agreed, I would rather get rid of Smith.  He is most definitely playing like ATL Josh Smith (thinking he’s LBJ), I just don’t see that working in the long run unless he changes his mindset.

        Also agree about playing these guys seeing who to target. 

  • Nov 6, 20135:40 pm
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    in the 2nd half Drummond, Greg and Josh did not need to start….

    I honestly thought the 2nd half line up was gonna be Greg,Josh, Singler, Billups and Jenning….

    2nd half rotation Drummond, Datome, stuckey, KCP and Bynum …. 

    Just keep it simple 

    • Nov 6, 20135:46 pm
      by Max

      Reply

      If keeping things simple means Drummond is on the bench than Monroe or Smith need to be traded ASAP. 

      • Nov 6, 20137:33 pm
        by I HATE FRANK

        Reply

        @ max you play to get favorable match up…

        Drummond vs hibbert favors the pacers ….it packs the paint …and Drummond really does not challenge Hibbert offensively….

        All I’m saying is you can adjust as you go along … It makes a different …  its not benching him, just taking advantage of your personel

  • Nov 6, 20139:44 pm
    by James

    Reply

    Monroe at 15mil? That’s effectively Fielder in an nba uniform, handicapped franchise. Drummond sitting is absolutely out of the question, trading Smith is null and void, can’t trade a free agent you just signed. And honestly, what gives anyone hope that Monroe will be a championship player. Al Horford, 2.0. Currently constructed, you would need a seriously proven coach, i. e. Rick Carlisle, Jerry Sloan, Larry Brown type coach to win with this roster. Cheeks just isn’t the one.

    • Nov 6, 201310:28 pm
      by JamesJones_Det

      Reply

    • Nov 7, 20131:17 am
      by Otis

      Reply

      I basically agree with all this. The early returns on this Super Sized lineup look bad. So far they’ve been this team’s worst lineup combination, as I thought they very well might. Smith is less expensive than Moose is going to be, and you’ve already signed the guy. Paying Monroe before this lineup has proven itself to be worth building around is a recipe for disaster.

  • Nov 6, 20139:46 pm
    by James

    Reply

    I’M all for moving forward with KCP and Datome hitting the starting unit, ASAP. We’ve seen the stuckey and Bynum show enough.

  • Nov 6, 201310:14 pm
    by James

    Reply

    Of course KCP isn’t better, but at this point, he is a bigger part of the future, play him.

  • Nov 6, 201310:35 pm
    by James

    Reply

    And unfortunately, that falls right back to the orchestrator of the team and coach……DUMARS. Talented, but very poor coaching hire.

  • Nov 7, 20138:07 am
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    4 games in…we are 2 – 2….sad to say the best start we’ve had in probably 3 years…. losses coming to two of the better teams in the league…
    and People are hit the panic button….
     
    My only concern is Billups starting, and no minutes for KCP….
    and Adjusting the line-up as needed….
    we have NO SUPERSTARS on this team, so if a certain line up didnt work in the 1st half…you dont need to stick with that same line up in the 2nd….
    josh smith and Greg both give you that flexibility…., and Drummond is gonna be most effective with shooters around him, because of how he moves and operates with space….
    in the 2nd half against indy…we made it so easy to defend,….
     
    I would have like to seen 
    C- Greg (Greg pulls Hibbert away from the basket)
    PF – Smith (David West would struggle to defend Smith)
    SF – Singler (run Singler off screens, make George chase more)
    SG – KCP (KCP stretches the floor, and he can switch and defend George giving him different looks)
    PG – jennings ( with the floor spaced jenning creates more offense)
     
    thats adjusting and keeping it simple
     
     

    • Nov 7, 20132:21 pm
      by Moonchild

      Reply

      Pistons are 2-2, this “early returns”  talk is silliness this early. Its way to early to measure anything in regards to chemistry considering that we had injuries to several players in the preseason…. Our two loses were close games against two teams who made playoff runs (and one I would say is a true contender)…The pacers just embarrassed the Bulls last night, and like I HATE FRANK just stated, this is the best start we have had in years….

  • Nov 7, 20133:12 pm
    by Keith

    Reply

    I was pleasantly surprised that the team was able to fight back and stay in this game after that debacle of a first quarter. My main concern is Brandon Jennings. I didn’t like him before we made the trade, so this may sound repetitive: Jennings is stupid. He’s been in the league 4 years and makes all of the exact same mistakes he’s made since he was a rookie. He has tremendous talent. He can shoot the ball, he can handle the ball very well, he can even make precise passes. The problem is that he is so much less than the sum of his parts. He takes too many shots, forcing up tons of really low percentage, guarded looks. He should be getting 10-11 assists a game, but instead he’s jacking up an extra 5 bricks EVERY game. He’s so focused on being a superstar that carries his team that he forgets to do the things that make a whole team better.

    Now, we knew a lot of this coming in. Smith is a great passer who scores incredibly inefficiently. Jennings is a talented player who is a terrible scorer. In both cases we figured talent would win out, and ultimately that’s been more true than not. We are 2-2. We’ve beaten the teams we should have beaten, and we’ve lost to the teams we expected to lose to. Nobody has blown us out, and we’ve stayed highly competitive with two other really high quality teams. The experiment is actually working. Not necessarily making us a contender (we’re not), but making the team competitive, putting them in the playoffs.

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