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Pistons Pick Up First Loss Against a Team They Should Beat

Detroit Pistons 99 FinalRecap | Box Score 114 Los Angeles Lakers
Greg Monroe, PF 37 MIN | 8-14 FG | 1-8 FT | 7 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 17 PTS | -5Monroe played well and put up solid counting stats. But all the missed free throws made it much harder for the Pistons to scrape their way back into this one.His defense continues to be good this season in one-on-one situations but he’s not good at rotating and ending up where he is supposed to.
Josh Smith, SF 38 MIN | 7-12 FG | 1-2 FT | 8 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 18 PTS | -5Smith was way too quick to shoot from deep, but he was hitting more than not in this game. His interior D is magnificent, but if he plays alongside Monroe AND Drummond, he really needs to work on his perimeter D. He has enough length to get a finger on a lot of jumpers.
Andre Drummond, C 38 MIN | 7-9 FG | 0-2 FT | 13 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 14 PTS | -16Were you wondering how Drummond can help space the floor with that awful shot? Wonder no more, Drummond was setting phenomenal screens for the guards allowing them to repeatedly get open shots in the lane. Yeah, you can have a diverse offense even while getting most of your points at the rim. And his box score stats were pretty solid too.
Brandon Jennings, PG 39 MIN | 8-22 FG | 3-3 FT | 5 REB | 14 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 23 PTS | -1Jennings was again trigger happy. The volume was ok. But he should only be shooting when he’s open or the clock is running down. Otherwise, move the ball around and see if you can get a higher percentage look. His assist count was deceptively high. Jennings wasn’t passing that well. His teammates just shot a lot after getting the ball instead of passing it further.Jennings’ breakaway alley-oop to Drummond was awesome, though. Because it wasn’t flashy for the flash, it was flashy because that was the only way he could get a clean pass to Drummond with two defenders right on them.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, SG 26 MIN | 3-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 7 PTS | -22Pope had the most epic steal I’ve seen so far this season when he stuffed Blake’s pass with both hands. Apart from that, though, his defense was not as good as expected.
Tony Mitchell, PF 1 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -2Nothing of consequence happened in Mitchell’s 49.4 seconds.
Josh Harrellson, PF 1 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -2Nothing of consequence happened in Harrellson’s 49.4 seconds.
Jonas Jerebko, PF 3 MIN | 0-1 FG | 2-2 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -5Jerebko didn’t get much burn, but when on the floor he did a good job of taking what the Lakers gave him. When they backed off, he drove. When they collapsed, he kicked out, when they jumped out on the shooters, he established good position. He also played solid D but got torched anyway. For so little time on the court, he sure had a lot of threes drained over his hand in the shooter’s face.
Luigi Datome, SF 6 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | +10Datome was useless. He probably should have played more, but not based on anything he did in this brief appearance.
Kyle Singler, SF 20 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -20Singler’s stat line fit my impression of his game. I felt like I could remember seeing him out there quite a bit, but I couldn’t remember any plays he was involved in.
Rodney Stuckey, SG 30 MIN | 8-16 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 16 PTS | -7Stuckey had some really ugly TOs. First he threw the ball directly out of bounds. I still have no idea who that pass was intended for. Then he tried to thread a pass by Xavier Henry. Look, there are just some guys not worth making risky passes around. Henry is one of those guys.But overall, his offense was good. Stuckey manhandled smaller guards on the block. Unfortunately, he didn’t do much to stop them from responding with open jumpers.
Maurice Cheeks
I’m not sure if Cheeks understands the value of taking a timeout when the other team is playing well. It gives your team a chance to regroup and reenter the game feeling confident and ready to stop the bleeding.

Two Things We Saw

  1. The Pistons really need to work on their transition game on both ends.
  2. The Pistons played some solid defense down the stretch. It wasn’t spectacular, but it was pretty good. And the Lakers just kept draining shot after shot. Credit this one to a game well played by the Lakers.

113 Comments

  • Nov 18, 20131:14 am
    by frankie d

    Reply

    jennings was horrible.
    he just shoots the ball too damn much and his teammates all know it so they just stand around and watch him dribble, fully expecting that he is going to jack up a shot sooner or later.  or they might, as smith is learning to do, just find an open spot and hope he gets the ball sooner or later if jennings can’t fint his own shot.  and his defense is so consistently horrendous that it is surprising when he actually guards someone.  any fan with any understanding of BB at all won’t get fooled by his flashy steals and all the other razzle-dazzle in his game.  jennings is a huge liability for this team and one of the reasons the team has been as bad as it has been.
    drummond also has to take a big share of the blame.  love the kid and think he is going to be a huge star, but this season, he has been allowing lesser players to dominate  him.  jordan hill didn’t get his numbers on monroe, he got most of those numbers on drummond.  several times, hill simply outworked drummond for offensive rebounds, a couple of times, even when drummond had inside position.  last year, teams definitely seemed to fear going inside when drummond was there.  this year, he seems like a non-entity.  he’s still getting his rebounds and dunks, but he is definitely not having the same defensive impact he had last year. 
    why?  this fan can’t figure it out.  but the idea that he deserves a good grade consistently, just because he is putting up numbers ignores what is actually happening on the court.  and his lazy rotations and non-existent boxing out, caused huge problems for the team defensively.
    obviously, most of the problem is coaching – it is impossible to see just what the team is trying to do defensively.  there doesn’t seem to be a coherent scheme.  but some of the problems stem from guys like drummond, and smith and jennings, et al, just not putting forth the kind of necessary effort.  and guys like KCP, who is supposed to be solid defensively, is doing stuff like letting jodie freaking meeks back door him.  jesus christ, didn’t he learn not to turn his head in high school.  and if his calling card is his defense, he is not going to be much help this year.

    • Nov 18, 20136:51 am
      by Steve K

      Reply

      Early in the season, but so far Jennings looks more like part of the problem than the solution.  
       
      They are playing dangerously close to the danger zone — not good enough for playoffs and not bad enough to be a top 8 pick. 

      • Nov 18, 20138:16 am
        by I HATE FRANK

        Reply

        its not Jenning…its silly to even blame him
        it would be different if he he was shooting and passing… he had 14 ast only three turnovers… 7 or 8 ast in the 2nd half….
        Defensively …. this team is horrible…. Jodie meeks and Young combined for 38 points…6-12 for 3′s… over 60% shooting from the field… they normally average around 26ppg combined….
        Jordan Hill 24 and 17…. Both season highs…he normally averages 11ppg 8rebs….
        Defense is hurting us not offense….

        • Nov 18, 20138:38 am
          by I HATE FRANK

          Reply

          it would be different if he was just shooting and not passing… he had 14 ast only three turnovers… 7 or 8 ast in the 2nd half….

          • Nov 18, 201310:02 pm
            by swamp

            When is the piston is going to start playing any kind of defense.  All the championship were from defense team Bad boy to corlise, Wallace and Wallace and company.   Detroit needs 60 min. of defense.  All that talent going  to waste. 

        • Nov 18, 20139:01 am
          by Steve K

          Reply

          It’s Jennings defense that is as much to blame. I see hardly any effort on that end. But he’s not alone. The whole team is sucking at defense.

          • Nov 18, 201310:07 am
            by danny

            Defense from Jennings, or lack of, is the problem.  On the other side of the ball he will get some nice numbers but it all starts with him.  Blake had 16 assists, if you want to look at it that way. 

          • Nov 18, 201312:36 pm
            by I HATE FRANK

            Jenning was not defending Hills,Meeks, Young or Johnson….
            they combined for 75 points…

  • Nov 18, 20131:28 am
    by Otis

    Reply

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. This wasn’t a team the Pistons “should” beat. This was a team they “need” to beat. Those concepts aren’t exactly the same. I’ve said it since the season started: The Lakers are surprisingly good, and you can go back through recent comments where I’ve said I don’t think we’re better than them. They have shooting and balance, they play like a team, and they have a better coach. This was probably the first game of the season that actually meant anything at all, and it goes without saying that if we can’t beat the Nash-less, Kobe-less Lakers (who have been written off completely as being fated for the lottery) then I think we need to take a good, long look in the Jumbo, oversized, ill-fitting mirror.

    • Nov 18, 20137:52 am
      by Tim Thielke

      Reply

      FYI, the Pistons CAN beat the Lakers. Any team in the NBA can beat any other team. The problem isn’t any particular loss, although this was the worst one so far. The problem is all of them put together.

      Detroit won’t make the playoffs by winning 75% of its games against inferior teams and 0% against superior teams. Both of those numbers will change of course, but the Pistons have gotten off to yet another slow start. This is highly disappointing.

      • Nov 18, 20131:49 pm
        by Otis

        Reply

        Tim, I know anyone “can” theoretically beat anyone. I saw that farce last season where Austin Daye scored 21 on 9 of 11 shooting and we beat the Heat. That didn’t mean we had ANY business whatsoever beating them. I was just saying that ever since I saw them stomp the Clippers I thought to myself, “Hey, this team isn’t that bad.” And once I got an idea of what this Pistons team was made of, I decided these skeleton crew Lakers looked like a better team, and I’ve made it no secret that I expected them to beat us last night.
         
        One place where you and I agree is that it’s disappointing. For the first time in years, this team is actually disappointing. I haven’t been “disappointed” in them for the longest time, because disappointment is based on expectations. And if this goes on much longer, I’m not going to be disappointed that the team isn’t winning these games. I’m going to be disappointed that management is keeping this mess together. So far (more than 10% into the season) this looks like a poorly constructed, rudderless mess. Once again the pieces don’t fit, the whole is much less than the sum of its parts, and we have a completely outmatched coach trying to make it all work.
         
        Not sure where you stand on the whole “Trading Greg Monroe is the best way to fix this and balance the team out” debate, but that looks like a wonderful plan to me. He’s an above average C and a below average PF. Ditto for Smith, who is reasonably priced as a PF but a waste of money at SF. I mean, it’s not rocket science. Sometimes you can have a collection of good players who suck terribly when you put them side by side. And if the team doesn’t look drastically improved on a consistent basis by February, they sure as hell better have an escape plan or we’ll be scratching our heads at why this isn’t working for the next four years.

  • Nov 18, 20131:34 am
    by domnick

    Reply

    this game…
     
    we’ve beaten ourselves! coach needs to be fired… i have no confidence with cheeks… i want George Karl.. coz our offense sucks with Cheeks! even on Defense we sucked!

    • Nov 18, 20137:57 am
      by Tim Thielke

      Reply

      The Pistons’ D didn’t actually suck in this game (except in transition). They were the victims of lots of well-defended shots that fell anyway. But they shouldn’t be solid on D, they should be excellent. That difference probably would have swung the game..

      • Nov 18, 20138:02 am
        by domnick

        Reply

        well im not happy about our perimeter defense.. our 2nd half went cold too… this is a mess! they only got pau gasol and we were torched by a non-allstar player named Jordan Hill.. WTF!

  • Nov 18, 20131:40 am
    by PISTONS MORIBUND

    Reply

    They got a lot of open looks but cant seem to throw it into the ocean.  Cant blame BJ for shooting the ball all the time, no one else was scoring.  Problem is not the offense, its the defense.  The perimeter defense is terrible and no one is rotating over to the ball and even if they do, they are leaving people wide open praying for them to miss the shot or not cut towards the basket.  Pistons have the players but the defensive scheme is terrible.  The pistons are not good enough to try and outscore everyone.  Real test coming up with the knicks who are just as bad, if not worse.

    • Nov 18, 20131:55 am
      by frankie d

      Reply

      If your point guard is not putting players in a good position to pass or score and he is not running any sort of discernible offense then yes he can be blamed.
      At one point the 3 front court guys were shooting something like 7-12, 8-9, and 8-14 and stucky had also been above .500 and was manhandling LA’s guards. 
      Yet…yet…jennings had taken more shots thsn anyone and was shooting something like 4-18.  It is simply bad basketball, should be unacceptable and it will never lead to winning BB.
      Detroit fans seem to be falling into the trap bucks’ fans had escaped from: getting mesmerized by his numbers and not actually considering how jennings is playing as a member of a 5 man team.  Jennings often looks like he is out their playing his own game against 5 defenders.

      • Nov 18, 20134:41 pm
        by Vic

        Reply

        exactly. 
        When I saw how well they were shooting in the first half I thought this game was in the bag.

    • Nov 18, 20138:10 am
      by Tim Thielke

      Reply

      No one else was scoring? The rest of the team was a combined 34-65 (52.3%) to Jennings’ 8-22 (36.4%). I think you have your cause and effect mixed up. Nobody else on the team put up huge point totals because Jennings kept shooting.

      The 14 assists were nice, but a bit misleading. There were very few plays in this game in which Jennings’ play helped a teammate to score but in which he failed to record an assist.

      • Nov 18, 20138:37 am
        by I HATE FRANK

        Reply

        @ Tim…
        i slightly disagree…. How many shos did Jenning take in the 4th qrt just to try and keep the pistons head above water?
        Also, Pope has to make shots…Jennings set Pope up several times…he was 1-5 for 3′s…
        sometimes i think Jennings was over passing trying to keep teammates involved….
        Also, we are the worst 3 point shooting team in the league…but we still are still near the top 10 in scoring….
        Its just defense….

        • Nov 18, 20132:01 pm
          by Otis

          Reply

          It’s not just defense. We’re in a lot of high scoring games that the other guys are in control of, so we end up having scoring totals that look respectable, but the whole package just isn’t working. You can’t win basketball games by scoring 0% of your points outside the paint. It’s not working against this pretty reasonable sampling of teams we’ve played so far, and it certainly would never work against contenders in a playoff series. The offense needs some balance. We can’t clog up the paint all day every day and have no reliable outside shooting whatsoever and expect to be competitive.

          • Nov 18, 20132:40 pm
            by Tim Thielke

            “You can’t win basketball games by scoring 0% of your points outside the paint.” 

            Well then you’ll be pleased to know that the Pistons are scoring about 49% of their points in the paint, 16% from midrange, 18% from deep, and 17% from the line.

          • Nov 18, 20133:49 pm
            by Otis

            I rounded it down to 0%. It’s close enough.

          • Nov 18, 20134:05 pm
            by Tim Thielke

            34-51% (depending what you do with the FTs, some of which are generated by shots in the paint–41% if you just ignore FTs) is “close enough” to 0%?

            Did you know that for his career, Steph Curry pretty much hits 0% of his 3 point attempts?

  • Nov 18, 20131:47 am
    by Brandon Knight

    Reply

    Pistons need to fucking defend the perimitrer. It is as simple as that. We are basically losing because of those open shots we are giving. BTW I hate Andre Drummond’s defense against other bigs. It is terrible. Sometimes he doesn’t even jump to block shot;;

    • Nov 18, 20138:49 am
      by I HATE FRANK

      Reply

      @ BK Drummond should NOT! be jumping he has a great wingspan, and a strong body…. but he does need to lock down that paint….alot of that is fundamentals and experience tho…

    • Nov 18, 20133:42 pm
      by anacaniwelk

      Reply

      You’re dead right on Drummond Brandon.  Even with Rasheed Wallace to help Andre he has been absolutely terrible defensively.

    • Nov 18, 20134:19 pm
      by oats

      Reply

      My guess is the not jumping is a coaching thing. Last year he was jumping at everything, but it’s really hard to actually move around and get to where he needs to go if his feet aren’t on the ground. Take Javale McGee. He’s been a good shot blocker his entire career, but so far he isn’t actually a good defender because he is so often out of position. It seems relatively likely that Detroit made it a point of emphasis for Drummond to keep his feet more so he can focus on positioning. Once he starts getting a better handle on the fundamentals they will likely work on letting him bring some of that shot blocking he did last year back into his game, but this time have him do it within the normal flow of the game.

  • Nov 18, 20132:08 am
    by MrHappyMushroom

    Reply

    There’s a tendency to look at the stats and overestimate individual players’ play.  Having watched only a little, here are my grades:
     
    Monroe–C+; Smith–C; Drummond–B-; Jennings–C+; KCP–D+; Mitchell/Harrison/Siva/Jerebko/Gigi–INC; Singler–F; Stuckey–C+; Cheeks–D-.
     
    Pretty easy working out those grades; I just took a whole letter grade off each player.  Otherwise, this averages as a B/B- performance with slightly below average coaching and that doesn’t match getting blown out by the 2013 Lakers.
     
    BTW–I’m not trying to give you a hard time. I know that the grades are there for discussion purposes mostly.  And it’s hard not to look at Jennings’ 14 assists and Drummond’s stat lines and see a B+ and an A.
     
    But for all the advances in advanced stats, there is a ton that doesn’t go into the box scores.  The defense was again dreadful, dreadful, awful, bad.  It’s a team game, so I can’t know who let Blake open for 16 assists or who let Meeks hit 4-7 from three or who let Jordan Hill do whatever he wanted.  As a team, this is another defensive F and our estimation of each player (and the coach) should be significantly affected.  I can’t see anyone here (possibly even Drummond) getting in the B range if they were collectively so awful in the defensive *half* of the game.

    • Nov 18, 20138:16 am
      by Tim Thielke

      Reply

      “I can’t see anyone here (possibly even Drummond) getting in the B range if they were collectively so awful in the defensive *half* of the game.”

      But they weren’t awful on D. Those may have been the grades if LA had been draining open shots all night. But they put in so many shots with hands in their faces.

      And you mention the Pistons poorly defending Hill. Now who is looking too much at stats? Did you see the moves he was busting out–or the mid to long range shots? Everyone (his teammates, the Pistons, the commentators, myself) were shocked by the game he was having. The Pistons should have done a better job of keeping him off the glass, but his scoring was really fluky.

      • Nov 18, 201310:14 am
        by lisa

        Reply

        The hands in the faces were late on those threes! The defense was not that good! The grades were way too high for the way the second half was played. Kinda like the Lion’s.

      • Nov 18, 201311:51 am
        by Jens

        Reply

        Please, stop it! You are sounding like Keith Langlois from Pistons.com. There is no doubt, the Pistons are the statistically worst Team of the NBA defensively. and that´s why they are 3-6. Losing to the Lakers is unacceptable this year. It simply is.

        • Nov 18, 20132:57 pm
          by Tim Thielke

          Reply

          “Losing to the Lakers is unacceptable this year. It simply is.”

          Have you informed the Clippers, Hawks, Rockets, and Pelicans (with their combined 24-13 record against all non-Lakers teams) that their teams are unacceptable because of that one loss they each got?

          Look this team has been disappointing so far. But before the season had started, there were two very flawed perspectives on how things could go down in Detroit. One was that this roster would definitely work, the other was that it would definitely not. After 9 games of slightly below average basketball, those two perspectives are still both wrong.

          • Nov 18, 20133:54 pm
            by Otis

            Well, for my part, I said it was highly unlikely that this would work. I’ve always been pretty clear that no matter how you slice it, you’re not going to get the most out of these players, so I’ve been advocating a Monroe trade pretty much since Drummond got here. But this hasn’t been “slightly below average” basketball. It’s been well below average. The team has at least average talent, but the fit is all wrong. The doubters have a whole lot more ammo in the early going than the dreamers. This team hasn’t proven anything positive so far, but they’ve reinforced some of our worst fears and come up short in categories that seemed like they should have been strengths. I think you’re being a little too positive here.

          • Nov 18, 20134:10 pm
            by Tim Thielke

            Detroit has 3 more losses than wins and is 19th in the league in point differential against teams whose combined records are 48-42 (in other words, slightly above average).

            That’s pretty much the definition of slightly below average basketball. What is your argument for claiming they have been well below average?

          • Nov 18, 20135:29 pm
            by Otis

            I dunno. Watching every game they’ve played… .333 win % against a pretty fair sampling of the league doesn’t strike me as “slightly below average.” Something about twice as many losses as wins just can’t be “slightly” below average I don’t think.

          • Nov 18, 20135:53 pm
            by Tim Thielke

            Would you say the same if they were 1-2? By that reasoning, were you expecting them to have an 82 win season after they started 1-0? A win percentage of .333 is really bad if you’re 45 games in. If you’re 9 games in, two games going the other way swings you to above .500. That’s not enough to make a terrible team.

          • Nov 18, 20139:31 pm
            by Otis

            First off, 1-2 is a VERY heck of a small sample size. Like, the third smallest possible sample size, in which there are only four total possibilities for our record (3-0, 2-1, 1-2, 0-3) and we’re right there in the middle, so it’s not saying much. Just like I didn’t think it said much when we were 2-1 after the same number of games, considering the two wins came against teams we need to beat. If we can’t beat the Wiz and the Celts, Joe may as well step down today. Nine is a more reasonable sample size, and it’s included a loss to a team we need to beat and no wins over above average teams.
             
            Keep in mind, I’m operating based on the premise that this team absolutely needs to be at least totally average in order to have a glimmer of hope that this wretched formula will ever work. Our three best players just need to be able to play together and make each other better, but they’re making each other worse. Just like it looked like on paper. So if they can’t at least be perfectly average, next season you’ll likely only be able to add one significant complementary piece if you’re lucky. And at that point you’re flirting with the luxury tax and have Drummond’s extension looming, so how are you ever going tom actually build a contender? From the looks of it, we need a whole new perimeter and one fewer big man.
             
            I’m not saying they’re “terrible” overall right now. Just terrible for what they NEED to be. There isn’t a whole lot of room to add talent around these guys once you’re paying them $15 mil each. And for pieces that don’t fit. Terrible would actually be better than just plain old dreadful, because if they stay only dreadful we’re going to send Charlotte a very nice pick. Stay tuned, because I’ll be happy to talk to you if this awfulness ever works out. I just don’t think it will, and every game seems to be more and more evidence that this team would be insane not to cash in on Monroe.

          • Nov 19, 20139:49 am
            by Huddy

            @Otis you can keep believing that trading Monroe is the teams only hope until the end of time( and repeating and repeating and repeating…multiple times in the same thread)…its fine and there are perfectly good arguments to be made for trading him.  However, your opinion about the necessity of a trade doesn’t make every opinion about the hopeless state of the team valid.  No one cares what premise you are operating under or what opinions of yours about fit effect your view on what the record should be.  9 games is a small sample.  Are the Trailblazers likely to remain 2nd in the west?  Is Brooklyn going to remain the 3rd worst team in the east?  How about CHarlotte and Orlando…are they locks for the 6th and 7th playoff spots this year?  None of these things are the most likely option.  THere are teams that look to be where they will remain based on last year and their level of talent, but the fact that their are just as many examples of teams way out of projected position makes your argument about how great a 9 game sample is pretty weak.
             
            3 games is VERY SMALL? yeah…does that make 9 big?  no. 

          • Nov 19, 201312:49 pm
            by Otis

            Huddy, if you don’t care about the premises I operate under, you don’t need to read anything I post or interact with me. You’re free to pretend I don’t exist. That’s the wonder of the internet. I care what informs people’s perspectives because I enjoy analyzing and dissecting basketball. I know for a fact that some people care, because they continue to have discussions with me.
             
            Now to address your second point, which was covered by the premises of my analysis: I did not think this Jumbo mess would work. I did not think Monroe and Drummond had much potential as a duo, and I think Smith works only as a PF alongside one of them. As a SF on that fat contract, signing him makes no sense whatsoever, and I guessed that he would make our weaknesses worse. So if through nine games we were 7-2 and beating legit teams, it would go a LOOONG way towards shutting me up. Depending on how we got those wins, I might still be skeptical about the sustainability of this funky formula, but I wouldn’t have much to complain about, would I? Given that everything I predicted has been validated by our record and the way we’ve been losing these games, we’ve gone more than 10% through the season and NONE of my fears have been assuaged. Not a single one. Maybe JUST MAYBE it turns out you’ll have a very hard time building a winner around two centers and a power forward, especially once you’re paying them a fortune apiece. Have you considered that?
             
            The point of explaining my thought process (the one you didn’t care about, yet still wanted to go at me over) is that I’m not strictly basing my opinions on the events of nine games. I’m basing it on my knowledge of the game, my understanding of our personnel, and my educated predictions about the team’s prospects. For instance, Brooklyn might underachieve all season, but they have the personnel to “underachieve” and still be a good team. Probably not as good as they should be with that payroll, but they should figure it out and make the playoffs and be dangerous. I’m not surprised at their growing pains, since they’ve got a lot of veterans adjusting to each other and their new roles, but they should figure it out and learn how to play together. Similarly, Charlotte and Orlando are likely to fall out of the playoff picture, but I haven’t paid enough attention to them to see who they’re playing or how they’re winning/losing. But I’m not making broad, sweeping assumptions about those teams because I’m not basing things on nine games. It’s all about context. I’m basing things on HOW BASKETBALL WORKS. And basketball doesn’t work by throwing two centers and a power forward at the problem and crossing your fingers that everything is going to be hunky dory. It’s about balance and structure. We have neither.

          • Nov 19, 20131:47 pm
            by Huddy

            The problem with adding all of your knowledge of the game is that it is irrelevant to the point Tim is making.  When he asks you if you would feel the same way if the team was 1-2 then why even try to defend how much difference there is between 3 and 9 games if, based on your argument that your opinion is based on the ceiling you have placed on the team and your knowledge of the effect the teams make up has on the game, you would feel the same if the team was 1-2 anyway.  You didn’t think the team was going to do well so when the team was 0-0 based on you knowledge and opinion their record would be bad.   You aren’t disproving what he is saying about 9 games being a small sample you are just reasserting that you don’t care that 9 games is a small sample because your opinion is based on what you have thought about the team regardless of record.  The question is in an unbiased scenario is 9 games a good sample size to base the season and that is a no.  The Blazers, Bobcats, Nets, 76ers, GRizzlies, etc. are perfect examples of this.
             
            “Maybe JUST MAYBE it turns out you’ll have a very hard time building a winner around two centers and a power forward, especially once you’re paying them a fortune apiece. Have you considered that?” Yeah I would totally agree (as I continually state) that what is going on could certainly mean that you are right…the problem is you can’t accept anything anyone says that doesn’t point to that.  Can you MAYBE JUST MAYBE agree that it is still early in the season, or the starting line up has had a relatively short time together, or that the team starting against pretty stiff competition has an effect on their bad start?  it doesn’t seem that you can even maybe accept any possibility that any other argument is valid based on your responses to things as simple as a statement about sample sizes.  How difficult is it to just say, “yeah 9 games is a small sample, but it doesn’t bode well.”?  You don’t have to throw away your opinions, but they don’t apply to everything.

      • Nov 18, 20132:07 pm
        by Otis

        Reply

        1) You bring up a good point. How many individual PF matchups has Monroe actually won this season? I mean, he’s getting clowned by basically everyone it seems.
         
        2) I do vividly remember one Hill put-back where he was right in the middle of the lane with three Pistons around him who were too busy watching the ball to put a body on the guy. That’s fundamental team awfulness right there, but I’m not buying these ridiculous fans who want to point to one individual category and pretend it’s the be all and end all. Defense, shooting, floor balance, rotations… there is so very much wrong with the way the team is built and the way they play.
         
        We’ve been getting TORCHED from beyond the arc, but this is the NBA, people. Just because WE don’t have any legitimate 3 point shooting whatsoever doesn’t mean it’s some sort of exotic weapon. Almost every GM in the world has managed to put proven 3 point shooting somewhere on the roster. Almost.

        • Nov 18, 20133:15 pm
          by Kamal

          Reply

          Otis, Monroe might not have won maybe battles at the four but how many has he lost? I’ll give you David Lee and Hill (even though Hill really didn’t do much damage on Monroe) But Aldridge, West and Randolph didn’t beat him. 
          Monroe has held his own for the most part this season. He ain’t the problem. In fact, he’s been the most consistent player on both end this season.

          • Nov 18, 20133:23 pm
            by Max

            Holding his own is not a good argument in favor of Monroe.  When David Falk goes into contract negotiations this summer with a demand for a max contract, do you think he’s going to say, “My client deserves the max because he holds his own”.  

          • Nov 18, 20134:01 pm
            by Otis

            Right. What he said. You’re not paying this ***hole a max contract to hold his own against nobodies in losses. If he’s not putting the team on his back and carrying us to victories, he’s as good as useless to me. He needs to be heads and shoulders above most competition (and boy is he not) or you can’t afford to keep him and pay him when the alternative is to trade him for a fantastic package of assets which will actually complement Smith, Drummond and company. If the pieces just don’t fit, you can’t pay the man $60 million and just sort out the details later.
             
            PS you might argue that he’s been our most consistent player, but that doesn’t mean we couldn’t trade him for someone else who would be more consistent and a better fit. Smith is going to have his ups and downs, and Dre is still two years behind Moose in his development. That doesn’t mean Moose is truly helping the team with his mediocre isolayshaun offense.

          • Nov 18, 20134:43 pm
            by oats

            He outplayed Trevor Booker, Brandon Bass, Serge Ibaka, and David West. He was outplayed by David Lee, Jason Thompson in that disappearing act he had against the Kings, and Hill the other night in what was an unusually good performance from Hill. He more or less played Aldridge and Randolph dead even. So he’s had two games where he was outplayed by guys he has no business being outplayed by and one guys that is a similar player to him, which is pretty normal fluctuation for a player. He also clearly out performed two guys that are pretty much in his talent range, out performed two others that he is better than, and held his own against 2 others that are similar talents. This is a normal range of performances for any good basketball player.
             
            I think we’re looking way too hard at individual match ups though. Monroe is putting up 16.4 points and 9.2 rebounds a game. His touches are actually down from last year, which is why his assists have been cut in half from last season. Also, the fear that having him play with 2 good rebounders would cause Monroe’s rebounding to seems to be off base since his rebounding numbers are pretty similar to what he has done so far in his career. His shooting percentages are also up a bit from last season despite the team’s poor spacing. On top of all that, his defense looks markedly improved, even if it is still pretty bad overall. Oh, and he’s 23. Sorry, that is a post rookie deal max player.

          • Nov 18, 20135:32 pm
            by Otis

            On a team with no other options down low, he sure is. On a team that just committed big bucks to Smith and was already fully committed to Drummond, you just can’t pay the man. Especially when the formula ain’t working. I’ve said before, I don’t think Monroe as a player is undeserving of all this money. I just think it’s better to let someone who needs him be the one to pay him. We need perimeter help more than another big dumb oaf clogging up the lane.

          • Nov 18, 20137:32 pm
            by Jens

            If I have to choose between Smith and Monroe as our PF for the next 5 years I am picking Smith. It´s as simple as that. Why? Because he is the far better Defender, the more versatile player and the the better athlete. Monroe´s got the better post moves, but I am buying that. It doesn´t mean I don´t like Moose. It just means I prefer Smith. And that means, Moose cannot be paid more than 9-10 millions a year on this Team. Now you can judge whether that´s realistic or not. I´d say it´s not because other Teams have a reason to pay him 15 a year. So, now let´s please get this over with as soon as possible, because:
            a)we have NO wing players at all
            b)The big three isn´t working. To my surprise not spacing or Smith triple tries are the Problem, it´s the defense.
            c)Brandon Jenning does not look like am efficient player right now. He shouldn´t shoot more than 15 times a game   

          • Nov 19, 20135:44 pm
            by oats

            @ Otis. I think it’s never a good idea to let a guy as good as Monroe walk. So, if a legitimately good trade comes up this season, they can do that. If it doesn’t then the Pistons have to give Monroe a max deal and then work on shopping him or Smith. Unless of course this proves to be a temporary problem caused by guys having a bit of an issue adjusting and what has been really bad play from the SG position. That is still possible. But as to whether or not Detroit should extend Monroe, the answer is obvious. He is a max player and they can’t just let him go. Trade him now or trade him later, they can’t let him walk. That means he is a max player for Detroit if a trade doesn’t come around before that.
             
            By the way, I agree that so far it looks like the big lineup doesn’t work. It’s too early to say for certain, and the team’s inability to get 2 shooters to pair with that lineup is also problematic. I feel like the bigger problem is that they are not defending well, and that was always supposed to be a key to it working. Some of that is that Monroe is a bad help defender, but it does seem like the bigger problem is that Drummond is 20 and not the game changer defensively that he has the potential to be. To me that suggests that it’s just that 9 games is too early to call it, but it would actually take a few years for Drummond to develop before we would know if it could work. I’m not advocating waiting a few years to make a move of some kind, but a failure to find a trade isn’t the end of the world since they could get a lot better with typical internal improvements from a very young player.
             
            @ Jens. Looking at the next 5 years is actually a bit short sighted. 5 years from now the team will have a 25 year old Drummond and could have either a 32 year old Smith or a 28 year old Monroe. Monroe and Drummond would be in the prime of their careers and have quite a few years where they are both in their primes and trying to win a championship. Smith on the other hand would be starting to decline, or soon would be. What’s more, Smith’s real value is as an extremely athletic yet undersized PF, and that kind of player tends to decline rather quickly.
             
            For the next 3 years or so the answer is that Smith is likely to be the better fit between him and Monroe. Unfortunately, those are also the years where Drummond is likely to be learning the game. I really can’t see this team being a contender until Drummond peaks, and that just isn’t likely to happen in that 3 year span. The 2 years after that should have the Monroe and Smith pairing much closer to even, and Monroe has a really good chance of passing Smith in that time period. The problem is that after that is when the potential window for the team to be a contender should be opening. With Monroe it still will be opening because he will be good for the 5 years after this first 5. With Smith that window shuts much sooner. If Smith is who you keep, you have to have plans to replace him in some way just as the team should be trying to hit it’s stride. If you keep Monroe then you just need to find the pieces around those 2 guys. If all things were even, I would much rather move Smith. It’s highly unlikely that they end up even, and a Monroe trade might be the one that makes more sense. Still, it should take more to get Monroe out of Detroit than to get Smith.

  • Nov 18, 20132:08 am
    by Aaron

    Reply

    The day Kyle Singler is no longer a Piston will be a great one.

  • Nov 18, 20132:09 am
    by Aaron

    Reply

    The day Kyle Singler is no longer a Piston will be a great one!

  • Nov 18, 20133:52 am
    by PISTONS MORIBUND

    Reply

    too much glue on the team!!

  • Nov 18, 20134:07 am
    by menten

    Reply

    one of monroe or drummond needs to get traded. they’re by far the worst defensive duo in the league. drummond especially has been very disappointng

    • Nov 18, 20131:42 pm
      by Merwin

      Reply

      Over-react much?  Drummond is coming off a rookie season where he far exceeded everyone’s expectations, even though he barely played.  Now he’s adjusting to a new coach.  Monroe is a stud offensive player who is starting to take strides defensively.  This team is fine.  The only person who should be concerned at all is Joe Dumars.  If they don’t make the playoffs this year, he’ll likely have a problem.  Going forward, they still have way more potential then we could have dreamed of just a few years ago.  If you think “one of monroe or drummond needs to get traded”, you’ve been listening to Otis too much and you need to chill.

      • Nov 18, 20132:18 pm
        by Otis

        Reply

        Underreact much? For one thing, Drummond didn’t “barely” play. He didn’t play as much as he should have, but he was a fixture in the rotation and played solid backup minutes every single game he was healthy. Also, Monroe isn’t a stud on offense. You need to look at actual studs in the league and see what it looks like when a guy can score at will. What Monroe does is post up with his medium strength moves, get into a position he likes, and fling up a prayer that falls like half the time because he’s close to the basket. A stud would finish stronger and hit a much higher percentage of THOSE particular shots, since they’re so close. But Monroe mostly just flings it up there and hopes it drops. Not a very strong finisher, and it’s all isolayshaun basketball. And these defensive strides are overrated. He’s still losing the individual PF battle far too often, and he doesn’t provide much of anything that we can’t get out of Smith and Drummond. The day Moose is making $15 million, he sure as heck better be playing center for someone else.
         
        Also, you seem so nonchalant about not making the playoffs. If we miss the playoffs, the only silver lining at all is that Joe will mercifully be canned (way too late and after basically all the damage was done). He’ll be gone, but what will we be left with?? A rotten team that has a regrettable decision about Monroe and will be forced to pay him maximum dollars to keep this wretched formula together, or lose him for basically nothing in a sign-and-trade. Plus we won’t get our draft pick, because we’re not likely to be a bottom 8 team. Joe will be hired somewhere else in an instant and probably have success there, and we’ll be the ones stuck in hell. Let’s see how this thing plays out, but you don’t seem to understand that I’m actually on your side and have some things figured out that you’re going to have to learn the hard way. Trust me.

        • Nov 18, 20132:29 pm
          by Merwin

          Reply

          Otis, I must have got under your skin.  That post was more ridiculous than normal.  Nine games in to their first season as starters together is way too early to start talking about trading one of the franchises’ two cornerstones.  A little patience is what the team needs right now.

          • Nov 18, 20133:07 pm
            by Max

            The team doesn’t need patience.   They need to work harder.  And I can’t believe I’m saying this but Otis was talking about the need to trade Monroe long before the season started and he’s entitled to his opinion–especially since things have gone so badly so far–so I don’t know why he should be criticized if he shows urgency.  I just don’t like when he’s smug and rude to people.  

          • Nov 18, 20134:12 pm
            by Otis

            My sense of urgency comes from the looming trade deadline, because you have a pretty fabulous trade asset here that expires in February. After that, you’re either paying him ludicrous money or losing him for zilch. If Josh Smith wasn’t here and Andre Drummond was never born, I’d be “okay” with extending Moose, but he’s our second best center and our second best power forward, and the other guys are under control for the next few years. So if there’s no fit, someone has to go. I vote we move the guy who has great trade value and is on the brink of a contract extension that would make him our highest paid player. If Dumars was dead set on keeping Moose come hell or high water, then signing Josh Smith to be our small forward was a tremendous mistake. But the correction for that mistake isn’t to stubbornly stick with the plan and eventually try to unload Smith for nothing, or have to move Dre out of desperation. The correction is to cash in on what was a VERY lucky pick in 2010.
             
            And this isn’t based on 9 games. This is based on watching these guys’ careers, predicting they would not be able to even APPROACH their individual potential if you jammed them all onto the same team, and then watching all of my predictions unfold like it was freakin’ scripted. You have a core of players who make each other worse instead of better. 9 games, 90 games, that’s not going to change. These guys are who they are.

          • Nov 18, 20134:44 pm
            by Merwin

            Otis:  That post makes a ton of sense to me.  If you were saying it in January/February and the situation was the same, I would completely agree with you.  Saying it now is too early.  Things could be completely different in a month or two. 
            Max:  I agree with “smug and rude”.  I’d add “unbearably negative”.  I agree that he’s entitled to his opinion, but all of the negativity about a team that is finally starting to go in the right direction bothers me a little.  Positivity can be cultivated.  If Otis won’t do it, I’ll throw the occasional positive viewpoint out there to balance him a little.

          • Nov 18, 20135:38 pm
            by Otis

            Hey man, as long as you’re on my side if things still look like this come 2014. Personally, I’d trade Moose before it’s clear that we have to trade him, because we’ll have more leverage the sooner we act. I just don’t see how on earth anyone expects anything to be drastically different in a month or two. These players are who they are, and I’ve been predicting this since the dawn of time.
             
            Sorry for being relentlessly negative. If there was something worth getting excited about, I’d be the most relentlessly excited person you ever saw. But let’s be honest here. This team’s track record over the last nine years has been positively brutal. Playing the “wait and see” card maybe a hundred times too often for my comfort.

          • Nov 18, 20136:29 pm
            by Merwin

            Otis, your post leaves me with too many things to say.  Thanks for the apology.  I think that there are lots of things to be excited about, Andre Drummond being enough all by himself.  I agree the track record has been brutal at times.  Wait and see with Charlie V. has been enough to make my brain leak out of my ear.  At the same time, trading Chauncey was probably too early.  And I think trading Monroe right now would be way too early.  Otis, you should just end all of your negative posts with “Go Pistons!”  It’ll make you sound much less negative and I’ll smile every time I read it.  :)

  • Nov 18, 20138:04 am
    by domnick

    Reply

    this lineup can work.. i believe we have the talent to do so… we suck on offense… because  we aint consistent… we had a great half but we didnt sustain our game… we miss shots and they made shots… this is stupid…  and who is Jordan Hill? why is he scoring like  that?!

    • Nov 18, 20132:22 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      this lineup is junk… lots of wasted talent… much less than the sum of its parts… we are actually VERY consistent… consistently bad… anyone can put together a solid half of basketball and then fall apart in the second half when the game is actually on the line… literally anyone can do this… this is what bad teams do… Jordan Hill is scoring like that because Greg Monroe has a hard time winning the power forward battle against guys who are actual power forwards…amen

  • Nov 18, 20138:08 am
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    Everyone keeps trashing Jennings for shooting….HELLO! we have no PERIMETER GAME! if he doesnt shoot….defense will just collapse, amd it will just become harder for Greg, Drummond and Smith… in what worls is 14ast and 3to’s horrible?
    KCP missed and passed up some nice looks, Singler spent more time cutting than spreading the floor…. we need shooting…
    Defensive;y i dont understand why we are soo bad….we’d be better off playing man to man….just keep it simple, because somewhere rotations to the shooters is getting lost in translation

  • Nov 18, 201310:20 am
    by MrBlockedShot

    Reply

    This one was a really unnacceptable loss guys.
    We made some Lakers players look like all-stars : Jordan Hill (24p 17r with career high included) and Steve Blake (16 assists), are you kidding me???. Our defense is very raw and we were really late contesting perimeter shots from the Lakers. Througout the game our players seem lost and looks like some of them have never heard of boxing-out opponents. It was a pain in the ass to see we weren’t able to get any stops and let the Lakers got in rythm. Cheeks has been a non-factor so far to me. He’s not even stopping the flow of the game when opponents are on fire, I haven’t seen him arguing any call with the referees…just seems another individual attending to the game and standing in the sideline…
    And about our offensive game, when the hell are our bigs going to hit a free-throw?. There’s nobody that can help them? Somebody call that guy who helped Shaq please!!!

  • Nov 18, 201311:34 am
    by David

    Reply

    Have to close games, they let it slip away midway through the 3rd and never recovered. I think its ridiculous to blame Jennings for this loss, I thought it was when Cheeks took him out and played Stuckey at the point is when the Lakers went on runs. Stuckey was doing better playing at the 2 then he was at the point. Secondly our bigs didn’t have the same energy they had in the first half. Thats a problem I’ve been seeing the whole season so far its like I’ve seen Detroit come out in some games get down by 15 then get back in the game and in some cases take the lead. They just don’t come back with the same defensive and offensive aggressiveness that they had in the first half to the second. They start to do that then they will win some basketball games. 

    • Nov 18, 20132:27 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      You’ve fallen into this bogus trap that losers trumpet all the time: Closing out games. It’s not that the team needs to figure out how to close out games. This is a myth perpetrated by losers who think their team is better than it is. The teams who “close out” games are also known the vast majority of the time as “the better team.” If you can’t get stops or buckets in crunch time, it’s not because there’s some elusive formula to closing things out. It’s because your team isn’t good enough to win. 90-some % of basketball games look reasonably competitive, even when they’re not.

      • Nov 18, 20133:14 pm
        by Tim Thielke

        Reply

        Here’s something I actually agree with you on completely.

        • Nov 18, 20134:15 pm
          by Otis

          Reply

          Stick around. You’ll see I’m a very reasonable man.

          • Nov 18, 20136:02 pm
            by Tim Thielke

            I’m not exactly new to this site. Longer than you, I’m pretty sure. I am aware that you do back up your arguments, which is a big plus. But you also have a tendency to become, as one other commenter put it, overwrought.

          • Nov 18, 20139:44 pm
            by Otis

            Where I reach my limits is when I see this general manager consistently bungle his job and make objectively terrible decisions and be told repeatedly that some hope lies just around the corner when it doesn’t. And when I can see very clearly some specific mistakes in advance, but nothing changes. I don’t claim to be some kind of prophet, but I see things for what they are, and I don’t get sentimental. People talk about how sports go in cycles and how we’re just in a valley and it happens to everyone now and then, but how many teams have had five consecutive completely wasted losing seasons and never once be a seller at the deadline? Never once been honest with where the team stood and sold off even one player for anything that would help accelerate the rebuilding process. But no. Just letting assets expire, salary dumps with nothing to show for it, paying guys to go away. I mean, we did it backwards by selling off a draft pick WAY before we could afford not to have our pick. It’s madness. It’s pushed me to the brink. That’s where my sense of urgency comes from. And with our recent history, it’s just too easy to guess that Joe’s going to stay pat at the deadline no matter what and just hope the team suddenly starts working. It’s nerve wracking.

          • Nov 18, 201310:15 pm
            by Tim Thielke

            I have long maintained that the biggest problem with Dumars is lack of vision. He’s made a few bad signings and trades, but everyone does. Dumars has never really appeared to have a plan, though, besides trying desperately not to field an abysmal team.

          • Nov 19, 201312:58 pm
            by Otis

            I generally agree with this. Monroe falls right into his lap. Sweet. Drummond falls right into his lap, but he doesn’t seem to recognize that one of these guys is going to be more valuable to the team as a trade chip than playing alongside the other. Not sweet. Then the best free agent he can get happens to be a poor SF but a good PF, yet he signs the guy to come here and be a SF. No vision and a desperation to win, even at the expense of actually winning. We could have flipped Max at one of those last two trade deadlines for something, traded Stuckey on his rookie contract, traded Tayshaun for future assets instead of a “lateral” move for Calderon. He so stubbornly refuses to slide an inch backward– even a calculated inch that pays dividends in the future– that he’s really hamstrung the team’s future. If he was just willing to be a true bottom dweller for five minutes we’d be a lot closer to “good” by now.

  • Nov 18, 201311:45 am
    by Jens

    Reply

    Please, everybody STOP sugarcoating this season so far! I can´t stand this no more! Just some indisputable Facts:
    1. Opponent Points:   Pistons, 25/30 Teams, with 103,8 ppg
    2. Opponent FG%: Pistons, 30/30 Teams, with  48.9%
    3. Opponent 3pt%: Pistons, 29/30 Teams, with 39.2%
    4. Rebounding Differential: Pistons 16/30 Teams, with -0,4/g
    5. Opponent Assists/game: Pistons 25/30 Teams, with 24,1/g
    6. Block/game:   Pistons  16/30 Teams, with 4,9/g
    7. Turnover diff:  Pistons  27/30 Teams, with -3,0/g
    So, what does this tell us?
    -The Pistons are statistically the worst defensive Team in the NBA right now, which is a shocker. We were supposed to be decent, at least. 
    -The Pistons are a mediocre rebounding Team at best – we were supposed to be elite with our frontcourt
    -The Pistons are a mediocre shot blocking Team at best – we were supposed to be elite as well.
    Apart from that our offense is running surprisingly smooth. We are not losing on the offensive end! The Problem is, that being a bad defensive team cannot be fixed easily. IMO, Pope is very overrated as a Defender. He is going to take a lot of time. Jennings is a bad defender anyways. Smith is not as good at guarding the perimeter as I had hoped for. Monroe is struggling defending the 4 and -the worst of all- Andre Drummond will take at least 3 years to become even a decent one on one defender. Right now he is the “weak link” (Isaiah pun intended) of this defense. I mean everybody can score on him: Cousins, Jason Thompson, Chuck Hayes, Jordan Hill, Pau Gasol, Robin Lopez, Lemarcus Aldridge, Kelly Olynik, Steven Adams…..I mean EVERYBODY.  
    They better figure a way to make Major roster changes. Right now, this is looking like a train wreck.
    I would trade Greg Monroe, then Jennings later. Target some good wing defenders, some shooters and somebody who can set up an offense.

    • Nov 18, 201312:41 pm
      by I HATE FRANK

      Reply

      who been sugar coating?
      People blaming jennings is my problem…Last year they blamed Knight for not being able to make the tough ast…not we got a player making the tough ast..and we combine about his shooting…
      Same folk want rondo…
      Team should go man to man….full court and half court pressing,,,,funnel players into shot blockers

      • Nov 18, 20131:38 pm
        by Jens

        Reply

        I think the trio of Smith, Monroe and Drummond is not working. It´s as simple as that. It´s less about Jennings imo.  We neither have any posibility to make a good sub to get somebody into the game with some impact as Singler, Datome, Jerebko, and all those dudes don´t bring it. At least not enough to play 20-25 minutes/game. We need some real wing players. Somebody like Wilson Chandler or Corey Brewer or Jeff Green or Batum or…..There is a long list 

    • Nov 18, 20132:33 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      As usual, I’m almost completely with you. Just want to add that the offense really is very, very bad. But I won’t nitpick too much, because you’ve got the main point down 100%: These three big lugs do not fit together, and a Monroe trade will go a very long way towards turning this into a good basketball team.
       
      I am having a hard time even understanding how people can watch this team play and think there is ANY meaningful change that can be made to this roster aside from breaking up the big three. It boggles the mind. The thought of keeping this unit together and paying Monroe $11 more million bucks a year, with no draft pick coming, and somehow expecting these square pegs to suddenly fit… it’s going to give me nightmares.

      • Nov 18, 20133:17 pm
        by Tim Thielke

        Reply

        How is the offense very, very bad? It puts up points at the 11th best rate in the league. I don’t expect that to continue, but nor do I expect them to continue to be 30th defensively. So if you’re going to accept the argument that they are the worst defensive team in the league, you also have to accept that they are above average offensively.

        • Nov 18, 20134:27 pm
          by Otis

          Reply

          Well, for one thing I just plain don’t like the formula. I couldn’t care less how many points any team scores in a loss. So we ran up the score and made games look closer than they should be. That doesn’t mean anything to me. I look at how this team scores, our offensive sets, and I’m not impressed.
           
          I don’t flatly accept that this will certainly continue to be the worst defensive team in the league, but I don’t necessarily see why they shouldn’t be? Someone somewhere made an interesting point about putting your best defenders on the floor together in the right spots. To start games, we have Josh Smith, a poor perimeter defender, away from the paint. Then, even when we go to a more traditional lineup, Drummond is the first big man taken out, so even though Josh is at his best position we still only have one rim protector down low at a time. If these two were paired together more, we might be a solid defensive force inside, but everyone is out of position.
           
          I might even accept that this team will manage to rank somewhere near 11th in offense, assuming we continue this trend of high scoring games, of which we lose 2/3. That seems sustainable, because I truly do think we can muscle our way towards games that look a lot more competitive than they really are.
           
          I’m not trying to make any wild assertions about where we’ll rank in any individual statistical category, because there are just too many factors at play, but I’ll stick with my theory that the team will be a general disappointment as presently constructed and continue to lose too many games to justify sticking with the formula.

          • Nov 18, 20136:05 pm
            by Tim Thielke

            If you don’t care how many point s a team scores in a loss, why do you care how many they allow? Either you just look at W-L record or you have to consider other variables. And point differential is one of the most significant “other variables” to consider. And apart from the Thunder game, the Pistons really haven’t had a lot of garbage time so far this season.

          • Nov 18, 20139:53 pm
            by Otis

            There’s a difference between points scored in a loss and points allowed. Ideally you’d rather it be close than a blowout, but basketball tends towards close games. Nobody goes full-throttle 100% 48 minutes 82 games with their best five man unit. You can’t play the game that way. There’s no point in surgically dismantling teams all the way through when it’s basically over in the 3rd quarter. So maybe our guys put up a fight at the end, I really don’t care. I’d rather see them execute and defend than watch them roll over, but I don’t really care how far they come back in an unwinnable game. So they have a lot of heart. BFD. Heart is nice, but I’ll worry about heart once we have the pieces to compete. If the other team is in the driver’s seat and can step on our throats just by inserting Curry and Lee back into the lineup, then it doesn’t matter how close we make a blowout look.
             
            Speaking of garbage time, have you noticed that we haven’t had much garbage time AT ALL in the last five years? I mean, the last time I even remember us having an identifiable clear cut garbage time lineup that actually got some real burn, Arron Afflalo was part of it. And to be perfectly honest, I don’t think it’s a good thing to have no garbage time at all because you’re playing from behind all the time, but never far enough behind that you just give it up and let your benchwarmers get some precious minutes.

          • Nov 18, 201310:18 pm
            by Tim Thielke

            The Pistons may not have had many garbage time lineups, I don’t honestly recall, but they have had plenty of garbage time.

          • Nov 19, 20131:04 pm
            by Otis

            But is it truly “garbage time” when you have like 2-4 starters out there trying to claw back into a game? I mean, there have been a lot of unwinnable games and a lot of wasted effort late in games, but I don’t know if I’d call it garbage time. They had that stretch early in the lockout-shortened season where they were just getting blown out left and right, but other than that I feel like they’ve kept unwinnable games closer than they should have been. And I don’t mean that as a compliment.

  • Nov 18, 201311:49 am
    by zdwtr

    Reply

    dont get mad at jennings. they made run when he was out. stuck as pg thats the coaches fault. when he threw out brick he made out with his dishes. on the o is not solely on him, monroe, drummond and singler are also bad with their d. common man

  • Nov 18, 201312:25 pm
    by MrBlockedShot

    Reply

    @zdwtr When Stuckey ran the team, it was a total mess. Can’t understand why Cheeks put him as PG instead of Siva. Rodney tried again and again to penetrate and ball movement was ridiculous. Everybody was on the paint and the only option was a forced shot or a bad pass, bad news for us in both cases. Meanwhile the Lakers were pilling up three-pointers and easy baskets on fastbreaks.
    Good point by @Jens, stats show us that the team is even worse of what some of us thought. Our elite frontcourt is really exposed with this numbers. Didn’t think we were that bad…
    If we can’t get at least two wins in the next three games someone is goint to start pressing the panic button…

  • Nov 18, 201312:39 pm
    by Jeremy

    Reply

    Our top 7 players all got C+ or better and we lost by 15…someone’s grading on a curve…unless we’re blaming this one on Datome! Damn Eye-Talians!

  • Nov 18, 201312:57 pm
    by Travis

    Reply

    Wow. The anger is strong in these comments. The Pistons can’t shoot 3′s to save their lives and defending the perimeter defense is laughable. So far I’m not disapointed that I spent $169 on the NBA league pass, but if the Pistons can’t start racking up wins against EC opponents, I may have some frustration. 

    • Nov 18, 20132:37 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      I don’t get it. So you just want to see a 40% win percentage, miss the playoffs but still lose our draft pick, then go into the summer and the only thing we can do with Stuckey and CV’s expiring money is bring back Monroe on a max contract and, if we’re lucky, add ONE significant-but-unspectacular perimeter player? And you paid money to see this? You should be burning down an orphanage by now. It’s much less to do with the misery of this season as with the decisions coming up on Monroe and what to do at the deadline. Everyone thought this was going to be the breakout year, but once again we’re left with a situation where the future outlook is too frightening to even care about today’s wins and losses.

  • Nov 18, 20131:24 pm
    by hirobeats

    Reply

    andre drummond should get a F for letting Bum ass Jordan Hill go gor 24 and 17

    • Nov 18, 20132:38 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      Jordan Hill is a PF. The man you want is Monroe.

      • Nov 18, 20133:19 pm
        by Tim Thielke

        Reply

        Otis, besides PF and C being almost interchangeable designations, basketball rarely ends up playing out with each guy sticking to his man on D. Switches happen, help happens, lineup changes happen. Hill definitely spent time being guarded by Drummond

        • Nov 18, 20134:37 pm
          by Otis

          Reply

          I can’t argue with the part about rotations, but if we’re talking matchups, Hill and Moose were paired together.
           
          In terms of PF/C interchangeability, I think that’s only the case so long as one of these guys can spread the floor on offense and defend stretch PFs. When the guy who’s better suited to defend out to the perimeter happens to also be the guy you’d like protecting the rim, and neither one can stretch the floor to save his life, it shines a spotlight on how bad a fit you have and how important it is to have some PF skills on that front line. If one of these guys had a trusty jumper, I might just concede that the positions are somewhat interchangeable.
           
          When the Lakers tried to make Gasol and Howard work, they failed and separated the two (and though they were disappointing, this was a West playoff team, and Gasol’s jumper is infinitely better than Moose’s). The Rockets tried the same thing with Asik, the results were bad, and Asik was sent to the bench and probably gets traded soon. The Pistons are the only idiots stubborn enough to stick with this garbage while telling us over and over that the positions are interchangeable and that there’s just too much talent for it to fail. They’re wrong on both counts.

  • Nov 18, 20131:44 pm
    by satchel

    Reply

    The defense is inexcusably mediocre at best. And since Jennings is a poor half-court PG, shouldn’t they be running the offense through Monroe/Smith at the high post, Chris Webber-style? Basically: isn’t the problem mostly Cheeks?

    • Nov 18, 20132:39 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      I’d rather slit my wrists than watch Monroe “operate” out of the high post ever again.

  • Nov 18, 20132:32 pm
    by MIKEYDE248

    Reply

    Other than that very bad stretch in the 3rd quarter when LA went on a 16-0 run, I thought that both teams were playing very equal.  Mo just doesn’t seem like he knows what to do in those situations.  He doesn’t call time outs, doesn’t make any substitutions, doesn’t call plays, he just seems to let the players figure it out.
    After that run is when Jennings was playing hero ball, and almost brought them back into the game.  Problem was that LA seemed to go on another stretch where they couldn’t miss a shot.  Most of them were guarded pretty well, but they were all going in.

    • Nov 18, 20132:42 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      Um, does it trouble you that your “silver lining” is that following our long-awaited BIG summer, nine games into the season we’re basically neck-and-neck with the Lakers skeleton crew that was thrown together on a bargain basement budget and was supposed to be a lottery team? I mean, that seems okay to you? Doesn’t set off any alarms that maybe we haven’t exactly put together a formula for success here?

      • Nov 18, 20132:56 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        Formula is the right word.  I’ve always made fun of D’Antoni and called him Antoni cause he’s he’s got no D but at least he has a system, unlike Cheeks, and has proven over the years that he can turn players who wouldn’t get minutes on other teams into productive players on his team.   What has Cheeks ever proven that he was handed this job with so many other superior candidates?  

  • Nov 18, 20132:33 pm
    by Max

    Reply

    I really think this is all on Cheeks and the team would be above 500 if any of like 5-7 coaches who were obviously better hires had been hired.  If Karl was coach, the team would only have 2-3 losses at most right now.   Is it wrong to use the expression, “the coach has lost the locker room” if he never had the locker room?
    We heard the explanation that Cheeks was hired because Dumars didn’t feel the team was ready to win so why spend big money on a coach.  That’s kind of crazy because it sets up the incoming coach as a lame duck to fail and shows no confidence.  Doesn’t make any sense to me why a GM would hire a coach with the idea going in that the coach will eventually be fired when the team becomes good.   If you are going to take that attitude and want to save the money on a coach, then why not at least hire someone relatively new who might possibly be a great coach than a retread with no chance?—and every bad thing I heard this summer about Cheeks is turning out to be true since the team plays with no discipline or accountability.  
    Smith is just taking any shot he feels like and it must be draining his teammates enthusiasm and drive.  This is a team that should never take a perimeter shot with more than eight to ten seconds on the shot clock in a half court set but players are doing so at will.   Cheeks doesn’t seem to have any clue or reaction.   He should be chewing people out for not working hard enough on defense, boxing out and taking ill advised shots but he seems as passive as a sheep.  He should be forced to listen to endless audio of Tom Thibodeau and Doc River’s hoarse interviews until he realizes that coaches need to raise their voices at least some of the time.  I’m disgusted and embarrassed as a fan.  My beloved defensive lunch box franchise is suiting up the worst defensive team in the NBA because they play with an unacceptable level of cohesion and effort defensively.
    The Lakers did shoot incredibly well yesterday and did make shot after shot with a hand in their face–although they took a fair amount of open shots too–but I don’t accept that those hands in the face meant that the team was playing any good defense.  The Lakers were able to swing the ball wherever they wanted and the shooters got to take all those shots in rhythm because the Pistons were not applying enough ball pressure and were allowing off ball players to move around on offense wherever they wanted.
    Anyway, this season is starting to look like a total disaster.   If the Pistons miss the playoffs, I would predict that Dumars and Cheeks get fired and Drummond will be the only player left on the roster two seasons from now including this one.  There is still time to figure things out and I hope so because I don’t want another season where I have to start rooting for losses at some point and with a 9th to 13th worst finish constituting the ultimate disaster it could get confusing before too long to know what to root for.  

  • Nov 18, 20133:02 pm
    by Dave

    Reply

    Lot of anger here for some reason. Yes, we got beat by a lesser team in the second half of our final west coast game of the trip. That’s never happened to any NBA teams before. Not to mention the Lakers got sizzling hot in that defining stretch.
    This Pistons team is fun to watch offensively. They attack the rim, attack the boards and seem to slowly be developing some chemistry. Defensively, they are abysmal right now. I’m not sure if Drummond is scared to foul (something he hasn’t been doing much), but he’s not contesting shots or being near physical enough. Our perimeter D is awful, we can’t stay in front of any PG’s and we don’t close out on any bigs who can shoot. The good news is these are all fixable things.
    My one change would be sitting Singler for Datome. Singler is not doing the things well he’s supposed to be able to do, so why not give Gigi a try. Consistent minutes should help his shot and he seems willing to fight for rebounds and be physical inside. Try that for a few games and see how it goes.

    • Nov 18, 20134:41 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      1) The Lakers are not a lesser team.
       
      Once you’ve wrapped your head around that, I’ll explain numbers 2-infinity about why we are going nowhere with this squad.

  • Nov 18, 20133:39 pm
    by anacaniwelk

    Reply

    A- for Andre Drummond???? Evidently Pistons Powered pays less attention to defense than Drummond does…if that’s possible.
    Drummond just stood around while Hill and others got offensive rebounds and lay ups.  Other times he would chase someone leaving his man wide open under the basket. Staggering how bad he has been defensively but does Pistons Powered call him out?  Nope. They must be making money off him.

  • Nov 18, 20133:43 pm
    by PistonManic

    Reply

    This team is flat out soft with no concept of playing basic defense. I blame it on the coach Butt Cheeks. This is the same guy who squandered talent in Portland and Philly. This is the worst defensive team is Piston history!!! I’m not sure they practice sometimes, flat out pathetic. they have no go to guy and lack leadership all the way round.

  • Nov 18, 20133:44 pm
    by anacaniwelk

    Reply

    Say what you want about Jennings shooting skills but I’ll take him all day long over Calderon and Knight.

  • Nov 18, 20135:59 pm
    by Vic

    Reply

    All this reflects in Jennings’ plus/minus numbers. Seriously, look at the difference when you replace him with Will Bynum and keep the same other four regular starters in the game:

  • Nov 18, 201310:00 pm
    by cornelius

    Reply

    When is the piston is going to start playing any kind of defense.  All the championship were from defense team Bad boy to corlise, Wallace and Wallace and company.   Detroit needs 60 min. of defense.  All that talent going  to waste. 

  • Nov 18, 201310:38 pm
    by Hook Shot

    Reply

    The big frontline experiment has been a disaster. Smith is playing well but out of position. Monroe needs to go hopefully to the Western Conference for a/some wing players. Jennings plays ok but his shot selection is terrible. At this rate they are headed for the lottery( and we may never see that pick). 

  • Nov 19, 201312:07 am
    by Lethal Leeroy

    Reply

    I think we need to keep some composure…
    Joe D knows his job is gone if no playoffs, and he knows that he will need to act (trade), soon enough to save it. Pretty sure he knows the big 3 ain’t working, but don’t expect him to say it, especially if he is wrangling for a good deal right now. Hope he gets one, but one thing is certain, this team will look different soon enough.
    Would like to see a little more of jsmith in the low post before moving moose though. 
    If however, he believes we already have the pieces then expect line up / rotation adjustments effective over the next 3-5 games at home. 15 games in we will still have a season to salvage And the trade route to consider.
    My preference is one of Moose or Dre at the 5, the other as our 6th, replaced by Datome starting at 3, with Jsmith at 4 and KCP and BJ in the backcourt.
    Billups, Stuckey, Singler and the aforementioned 6th man eating up all other minutes. Woody (Harrelson) and Tony as needed. No JJ, WB unless desperate.

  • Nov 19, 20131:53 am
    by James

    Reply

    As currently constructed, at their peak performance, this team would be nothing more than the Atlanta Hawks 2.0 circa 2006-2011. Considering the big 3 are at 3 different levels of development, they don’t have the necessary experience to know how to compliment one another, NOR DOES THE COACH. Personally, I cannot be satisfied with a permanent middle of the pack team for this current decade. Monroe is the odd man out up front, Harrelson would be getting the first big spot off the bench. Monroe has to be flipped for athletes on the wing. If I’m the owner, the mandate would be I AM NOT, NOR ARE YOU, PAYING MONROE MAX MONEY, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE. God bless him, but the guy just isn’t that good.

    • Nov 19, 20131:06 pm
      by Otis

      Reply

      Amen. His slow ass isolayshaun offense can move right along.

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