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Toughness of Rodney Stuckey leads Pistons to near-upset of Grizzlies

Rodney Stuckey entered his first game of the season for the Pistons on Friday and promptly missed a wide open layup. After that, he proceeded to be the most efficient offensive player either team put on the court and helped the Pistons nearly win a road game against one of the league’s best teams from last season.

Trailing by 10 points with seven minutes remaining in the third quarter, Stuckey scored six points and assisted on a Chauncey Billups three-pointer to help the Pistons out-score Memphis 20-8 in the final minutes of the third and enter the fourth quarter with a lead. Stuckey left the game with just under eight minutes remaining and the Pistons up by two points. He scored 19 points on 8-for-13 shooting in 23 minutes and, along with Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who scored 13 points in 18 minutes off the bench, provided the Pistons’ backcourt with a needed spark as Billups struggled shooting the ball (1-for-7) and both Billups and Will Bynum struggled to defend Memphis starters Mike Conley and Tony Allen, who combined for 38 points on 13-for-22 shooting.

The Pistons led by six with just over a minute remaining, allowed Memphis to tie the game, then ran out of steam in overtime. Maurice Cheeks didn’t go back to Stuckey or Caldwell-Pope despite their success and the defensive lapses (and poor shooting, in Billups’ case) of his starters. The loss of a lead in a winnable road game and a perplexing coaching decision are certainly worthy of questioning, but the overall takeaway from this game is a positive. In my mailbag the other way (by the way, keep sending me questions for it — patrickhayes13(at)gmail(dot)com or on Twitter @patrick_hayes), I mentioned that the Grizzlies were a team I was really looking forward to seeing the Pistons play, not just because they’ve had success with a big lineup devoid of shooters like the Pistons are trying to, but because they’ve been one of the league’s toughest, most physical teams over the past few seasons. The Pistons … haven’t been, to put it delicately. Talent deficiency aside, at no point during the past four seasons have the Pistons ever looked like a team that can play with the intensity or physicality necessary to even compete for a playoff spot, let alone get one. I wondered how this more talented version of the Pistons would respond to arguably the league’s most physical team, and the answer is a favorable one.

Greg Monroe is not a good defensive player, but he had some solid defensive possessions against the Grizzlies. Stuckey played under control while at the same time using his strength and quickness to his advantage — he has not always been able to combine those things at the same time throughout his career. Monroe, Andre Drummond and Josh Smith were active defensively, combining for nine steals and five blocks. Caldwell-Pope played confidently in the second half after an erratic first half. Cheeks, for that matter, didn’t bury his rookie on the bench after KCP forced some things that weren’t there on offense in the first half. The overall result is not a favorable one — the Pistons are now winless in their last 19 Western Conference road games (hat tip, Vince Ellis). At some point, good efforts in a tough road loss to a good team will still be net failures, and that point will signify when Pistons basketball is truly back to where it needs to be. But this is still a process and although the Pistons didn’t leave Memphis with a win, they did leave with continued reasons to be optimistic about where they’re headed this season.

Detroit Pistons 108 Final

Recap | Box Score

111 Memphis Grizzlies
Josh Smith, SF 44 MIN | 7-23 FG | 2-3 FT | 8 REB | 5 AST | 3 STL | 3 BLK | 5 TO | 19 PTS | +5Let’s start with the obvious negative — Smith shot too much. Like, way too much. It wasn’t even just a matter of him missing good looks — that’s frustrating, but I don’t have a huge issue with him taking jumpers within the offense if they’re decent shots. But too many of his shots were forces — 23 shots for a guy struggling is just way too much, especially on a night when Greg Monroe was having some success inside.

So why the C grade? Everything else. Despite Smith’s poor showing on offense, he still rebounded, he still passed well, he still defended, he still blocked shots and he was a terror in passing lanes. That’s why you live with occasionally ugly shooting nights.

Andre Drummond, C 48 MIN | 6-13 FG | 0-1 FT | 16 REB | 0 AST | 3 STL | 2 BLK | 1 TO | 12 PTS | -11As we became accustomed to last season, Drummond compiled his statline extremely quietly until you suddenly look at it and realize, “Wow … he has a double-double and I barely even noticed.” His 48 minutes may have been a tad too much (“48 minutes? That’s three games worth of playing time for him!” – Lawrence Frank) — he was winded, particularly in overtime, and was slow to react on Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol buckets inside late. Still … he was enough of a game changer that my “Andre Drummond Defensive Player of the Year” campaign remains viable.
Greg Monroe, C 41 MIN | 6-10 FG | 4-4 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 16 PTS | +5As mentioned above, Monroe needed more touches. He was scoring efficiently against every defender Memphis threw at him. More importantly, he battled defensively against Gasol and Randolph. In the first two games of the season, he’s moving his feet better and reacting more quickly on defense than he ever has. That’s still not leading to overall solid defense from him — there are still lapses on his part — but he has no doubt worked on his defense and that’s starting to show.
Chauncey Billups, PG 32 MIN | 1-7 FG | 2-4 FT | 1 REB | 6 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 5 PTS | -11Billups struggled shooting, he struggled on defense and he had a clean look at a game winner in regulation that he missed. He ran the offense well as expected. He’s now played more than 30 minutes in two straight games, and that’s probably too much, especially on a night when the Pistons had two other guards having great games.
Will Bynum, PG 32 MIN | 7-11 FG | 3-5 FT | 2 REB | 6 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 18 PTS | -15Bynum scored efficiently, he passed well and he made some big plays late in the game on offense. He was also a sieve defensively against Mike Conley.
Jonas Jerebko, PF 7 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | -7Jerebko didn’t play in the second half. He wasn’t very active on offense in the first half, but he rebounded well … until the final play of the half when he, Monroe and Drummond all stood and watched as Randolph had an offensive rebound fall in his lap for a layup at the buzzer. Not sure who was more at fault on the play, but they were all in position to make that rebound more difficult for Randolph.
Kyle Singler, SF 20 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 6 PTS | -3Singler shot well, but was a step slow on defense most of the night and was late closing out on shooters. Not the typical solid Kyle Singler effort that we grew accustomed to last season.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, SG 18 MIN | 4-7 FG | 4-4 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | +8Caldwell-Pope drove into traffic twice in the first half and attempted to get off wild shots that Cheeks looked displeased about. When he returned in the second half, he stopped trying to drive the ball, he knocked down two open jumpers, he made nice cuts and he filled the lane on breaks. Caldwell-Pope’s defense is enough to make him an option to play most nights. If he can focus his offense on simply taking the shots that come to him, he could be earning a lot of minutes by the end of the season.
Rodney Stuckey, SG 23 MIN | 8-13 FG | 2-3 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 19 PTS | +14I said most of it above, but Stuckey’s performance was really what made this a competitive game. The Pistons were flat before he entered the game, and his energy clearly rubbed off on teammates, particularly Caldwell-Pope during their minutes together in the third and fourth quarters. Stuckey, for all of his baggage from years of the organization trying to pinpoint exactly what he is, could be an incredibly valuable player for this team if he’s engaged. That, of course, has always been the question with him — whether he can keep his motivation level consistent. This season so far, he’s 1-for-1 in being engaged. This was a very good performance that hopefully signal positive things to come.
Maurice CheeksI loved how Cheeks handled Caldwell-Pope. He yanked him in the first half when he was a little erratic, but he still went back to him in the second half. The Pistons have had several coaches in recent years — dating all the way back to Larry Brown — who have been far too impatient with young players. It was great to see Cheeks having confidence in Caldwell-Pope, and I’m glad Caldwell-Pope was able to reward that trust with a good second half performance.

What I did not like — with the offense struggling late in the fourth and in overtime, Cheeks didn’t go back to Stuckey or Caldwell-Pope. Bynum and Billups will both be important players this season, but both are also situational players. Just because they happen to be starting right now doesn’t mean you have to roll with them no matter what. Play the hot hand or hot hands. I’m not sure it would’ve changed the result of the game, but it certainly would’ve caused Memphis to have to make a late adjustment.

93 Comments

  • Nov 1, 201311:36 pm
    by Max

    Reply

    Nothing about how the refs robbed the Pistons by calling one of the worst offensive goaltending calls ever?   As far as I’m concerned, the Pistons won.  

    • Nov 1, 201311:53 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      It was a borderline call at worst … one angle pretty clearly showed the ball still touching the rim when Drummond touches it. Another angle made it look like the ball may have been out or very close to being out. Hardly the worst offensive goaltending call ever though. 

      • Nov 2, 201312:00 am
        by Max

        Reply

        The ball was coming off the rim hard and clearly had no chance to go in.   The angle where you say the ball looked like it was still on the rim was the worst angle from which to make the call as the other angle showed the ball was not touching the rim as it was actually higher than the rim.    I said it was the one of the worst such calls ever because they got to review it and still made a terrible call.  

        • Nov 2, 201312:02 am
          by oats

          Reply

          It doesn’t matter if it’s touching the rim. If it is still lined up with the rim but over it then it is still goal tending. It also doesn’t matter if it was coming out or not. It was coming out, but a part of the ball looked to be lined up over the rim. That is goal tending.

          • Nov 2, 201312:17 am
            by Max

            Watch the fifth vid in the link you posted.  

      • Nov 2, 201312:00 am
        by oats

        Reply

        I thought it was pretty clearly above the rim still. If any part of the ball is in the cylinder above the rim then it is goaltending, and I thought it definitely was.

        • Nov 2, 201312:04 am
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          Yeah, I had no issue with the call. Neither did the announcers and I didn’t notice anyone really complaining about it on Twitter either. It was fairly close, but not one the Pistons got screwed on or anything.

          Also, the first half block Drummond had on Randolph actually could’ve been a goaltend too … that ball looked like it was on the way down when Drummond got it. That, to me, looked way more like a missed call than the one that went against Drummond. 

          • Nov 2, 201312:07 am
            by Max

            Both announcers said definitively that it wasn’t a goaltend and both were shocked that they reviewed the play with Conley hitting the ball out of bounds.   They asked if the refs were  even looking at the same footage. 

          • Nov 2, 201312:10 am
            by Max

            Whether or not the earlier play in the first half was a bad call is comparatively irrelevant because it wasn’t reviewable.  Getting multiple calls wrong that actually swung the game after watching all the replays is criminal.  

          • Nov 2, 201312:11 am
            by Patrick Hayes

            They did not say it wasn’t a goaltend. They said that from one angle, it looked close and from the other angle it looked like it definitely was.

          • Nov 2, 201312:15 am
            by oats

            The Conley thing was bad. Wasn’t that over time though, or do I remember that wrong? They lost because they couldn’t score in overtime. Also, Smith blocked the shot after that Conley play, and Bynum got fouled on a fast break that would not have happened without them missing that call, so it wasn’t exactly a big part of the loss anyways. Bynum missing the free throw hurt, but getting 2 foul shots is better than most everything else the offense was doing down the stretch.

          • Nov 2, 201312:16 am
            by Max

            The only angle where it looked like it could have been a goal tend was the one facing the basket which was the poorest perspective from which to make the call because you can’t tell from the vantage whether the ball had come off the rim or not.    

          • Nov 2, 201312:25 am
            by Max

            You’re right about the context of the Conley play.  It just really angered me that they reviewed three plays and every call went against the Pistons and 2 of them clearly should have been for the Pistons.   The third when Smith hit the ball out of bounds I thought the refs could have at least given the Pistons since if you watch that replay Smith was clearly fouled.   The announcers said the refs couldn’t have considered that part of the play though.   Still, 3 plays reviewed that went in the Grizzlies favor and all three would have gone in the Pistons favor if they were calling the game correctly.  

        • Nov 2, 201312:05 am
          by Max

          Reply

          It has to have a chance to go in and when Drummond touched the ball, it had already left the above the rim area and was coming off the front of the rim hard with no chance to change direction since the ball was higher than the rim and would never have touched the rim.    

          @Oats…..what did you think of the play where Conley cleared hit the ball with his hand out of bounds?   They reviewed that play too and made the wrong call.    The refs were horrible.   I’d give them a break if these plays hadn’t have gotten reviewed but to look at the replay and get it wrong is just awful.   

          • Nov 2, 201312:08 am
            by oats

            No, it doesn’t have to have a chance to go in. See here.
             
            They totally blew the Conley thing though.

          • Nov 2, 201312:09 am
            by oats

            Oh, the first clip is the relevant one. The video rule book on NBA.com is great by the way.

          • Nov 2, 201312:14 am
            by Max

            The fifth example seems the most comparable to the play to me and does say something about the ball having no chance to go in.    I don’t see anything in your link that says a goal tend can be called if the ball has no chance to go in.  

          • Nov 2, 201312:24 am
            by oats

            The first one the ball is clearly coming out when it was tapped, same as with the Drummond shot. In the last one it was quite a bit farther out than Drummond’s tip, and it was ok because the ball was deemed clear of the cylinder. The important part of that clip is that the ball had vacated the cylinder. When Drummond did it the ball was not clear of the cylinder.

          • Nov 2, 201312:30 am
            by Max

            In the first vid, the ball has a very unlikely chance to hit the rim and bounce in whereas in the Drummond play the ball had no chance to touch the rim and was already leaving the cylinder area.   It wasn’t a high bounce like in the play but like a hard line drive leaving the rim area.  The fifth vid looks much more like the play to me.  

          • Nov 2, 201312:49 am
            by oats

            Listen to the description of the ruling. On the fifth one it was ok because the ball had vacated the cylinder. I actually have to admit that it is close enough to be a judgement call on whether that one was clear or not, but being clear of the cylinder is the key to it being a legal play. On Drummond’s play you can see that side shot where the ball appears to be clearly located above the rim and in the cylinder, therefore it isn’t ok. That’s why I referenced the first clip with the ball also clearly in the cylinder.
             
            At most you can call this a close call and not a travesty. On the Smith out of bounds they also made the right call according to what the NBA allows to be reviewed. Yes it was a foul, but that can’t be reviewed. Due to it being an end game play they can review who it was out on. It was very clearly out on Smith, even if the reason was because he was fouled. They absolutely have to call that out on Smith with the way the rules are set up. So the only real mistake of those 3 reviews was the Conley one that wasn’t really all that important anyways. The refs did not cost Detroit this game, their offense crapping out down the stretch cost them the game.

          • Nov 2, 201312:52 am
            by Max

            Well, we’ll have to agree to disagree since I don’t think they ever should have been an overtime and I haven’t been this angry about a call since Laimbeer’s phantom foul on Kareem.  

          • Nov 2, 201312:55 am
            by Max

            The ball was an 1/8 of its area above the cylinder at most and was traveling hard in the direction of the foul line with no chance to touch the rim or go in.   I still haven’t seen any evidence that a goal tend can be called if the ball has no chance to hit the rim or go in.  

          • Nov 2, 20131:38 am
            by oats

            The written rules don’t really clear it up that much. Like this explanation here. Based on that it was clearly goal tending since the ball was above the rim and an offensive player touched it. Then there’s rule number 11 part c that seems to support you here. Yet it’s important to note that in the college game it doesn’t if the ball is a legal shot attempt for goal tending to occur. For example, in college there can be goal tending called on an inbound pass despite that not being a shot attempt with a chance to score. It’s definitely possible that they are just making the point that it needs to be a legal shot attempt. The literal reading of the rule would suggest that you are right, yet the NBA’s attempts to explain how the rule is actually enforced makes it sound like I am right and it’s the ball’s position in relation to the cylinder that is the key to whether or not that play was goaltending. That leads me right back to where I was in the last post. At most it’s a judgement call that is too close to actually care about, at least it was exactly the way the NBA wants the rule enforced.

          • Nov 2, 20133:59 am
            by Max

            @Oats   I said that about what the refs could do when they were reviewing the play when Smith hit the ball out of bounds.   But it would seem you’d agree at least that they initially made the wrong call.   So that’s at least two bad calls in the overtime even while we disagree about whether there should have even been an overtime.    

  • Nov 1, 201311:43 pm
    by Max

    Reply

    Despite the bum refs stealing the game; this was the game where I realized what people were talking about regarding how painful it’s going to be to watch Smith hoist jumpers early in the shot clock when he’s not even open.  

    • Nov 2, 201312:14 am
      by joe

      Reply

      A couple bad shots from Josh Smith didn’t loose the game for the Pistons tonight, not getting the ball into Monroe at crunch time is what lost the Pistons tonight game.

      • Nov 2, 201312:17 am
        by Patrick Hayes

        Reply

        Well, Smith taking poor shots early in the shot clock may have contributed some to Monroe not getting enough touches.

        But Smith’s defensive activity and passing certainly made up for some of his poor shooting decisions. 

        • Nov 2, 20131:18 pm
          by jamesjonea_det

          Reply

          Forget about the poor shot selection it was the TOs that killed this team.  I’m not sure you can run Bynum and Smith out there for long stretches if you hope to win close games.  Those two are just way to turnover prone.  

  • Nov 1, 201311:44 pm
    by domnick

    Reply

    i think we’re getting there.. despite the loss… the margin isnt big… 3 points? close game and overtime…. we just need mental toughness… and a better ball handle (bynum sucks)

    • Nov 2, 20134:35 am
      by zdwtr

      Reply

      (bynum sucks) dont worry here comes jennings

  • Nov 2, 201312:01 am
    by Moose

    Reply

    I enjoy watching Greg Monroe work, but why in the heck does he complain every time down the court, why does he yell “AND ONE” after every single shot that anyone takes, and why does he melt down like he did when Dre was called for the offensive goaltending.  I know he is young, but Dre is even younger and less experienced, give him a break.

    • Nov 2, 201312:06 am
      by Max

      Reply

      Maybe he melted down because it was great injustice.  

      • Nov 2, 201312:12 am
        by Patrick Hayes

        Reply

        Calling things great injustices when they’re not great injustices is an insult to great injustices.

        • Nov 2, 201312:19 am
          by Max

          Reply

          They reviewed the replays and got it wrong.   

          • Nov 2, 20131:46 am
            by sebastian

            Max, you are getting hot and bother over an NBA rule (it was goal tending, my  man). Remember this is not FIBA.
            The call that was grossly overlooked is this silly azz point of emphasis, regarding delay of game.
            There should had been a second delay of game called on Gasol, when he briefly held the ball after his tip in late in regulation.
            This would have given OUR guys a free throw, which if made could had given US the “W”.
            That was the call that was missed.

          • Nov 2, 20131:48 am
            by Max

            It was not goal tending.  

          • Nov 2, 20131:54 am
            by oats

            I think you missed his point.

          • Nov 2, 20131:55 am
            by oats

            Sorry, I meant Patrick’s point.

          • Nov 2, 20134:37 am
            by zdwtr

            I was more bothered on Chauncey missing the ft that could make it 6 pts lead

          • Nov 2, 20131:24 pm
            by jamesjonea_det

            It was clearly a goal-tend.  The ball was clearly above the cylinder when he tapped it.  I’m not sure why you continue to argue it when everyone else agrees it was a goal-tend.

          • Nov 2, 20132:00 pm
            by Max

            Not everyone agrees.  Others have agreed with me.  

          • Nov 2, 20136:31 pm
            by gtg2013

            zdwtr: “I was more bothered on Chauncey missing the ft that could make it 6 pts lead.”
            Right, that was his big late miss, not the final shot. Even the best shooters miss most 3s, even good looks.

    • Nov 2, 201312:11 am
      by oats

      Reply

      I assume it was because he narrowly avoided making the exact same mistake right before Drummond did it. His hand is right up there, but he realized that was a mistake and didn’t touch it. So he avoided the goaltending, only to have it called on his teammate who failed to make the same adjustment he did. I can get why that would be annoying.

    • Nov 2, 201312:14 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      @Moose:

      I think Monroe reacted on that play b/c I’m pretty sure both he and Smith yelled not to touch it, then when Drummond touched it, they got frustrated. Smith threw his hands up in the air as they walked back too. Not a huge deal … dudes get mad at each other playing ball all the time. Drummond can just throw his hands up in disgust the next time Monroe’s man blows by him. 

  • Nov 2, 201312:07 am
    by joe

    Reply

    The only problem I have with the Players grade is Josh Smith getting C, while Mo Cheeks receive an B, when it’s clear that the Pistons lost this game off of poor coaching down the stretch. The Pistons are not going to be serious contenders until they realize that Monroe is your go to guy at the end of the game.

    • Nov 2, 201312:16 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Well, I think Cheeks coached the game well for most of regulation, and I was really impressed with his handling of KCP … that’s been a rarity with recent Pistons coaches, as you know, so I was more pointing out that I appreciated that even if there were some rotation management issues and some clumsy sets they were running late.

    • Nov 2, 20131:31 pm
      by jamesjonea_det

      Reply

      So it was Cheeks who blow a simple entry pass to Josh Smith with just over a minute to go???  I sure thought that look like Bynum out there!  It must have been Cheeks that shot that miss FT with under a minute and I knew that was Cheeks that tried to tip that ball in when he shouldn’t have…

      You can’t throw this one on Cheeks.  From CB to Drummond this team blow the game with poor play and poor decisions.  

      • Nov 2, 20134:54 pm
        by joe

        Reply

        Nope but it was Cheek’s who call the play at the end of the game for Billups to jack up a three instead of going into Monroe. Memphis has no problem going into their star bigs at the end of the game. 

        • Nov 2, 20137:02 pm
          by jamesjones_det

          Reply

          Fair point.  I still think this one is more on the players but I can’t argue with you on that call, I definitely wasn’t a quality play or shot.

          • Nov 2, 20137:03 pm
            by jamesjones_det

            should read “It definitely wasn’t a quality play or shot.”

  • Nov 2, 201312:11 am
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    gave this game away …. not upset….and drummond and monroe missed some bunnies that would have changed the game….we did this against one of the best defensive players in the league

  • Nov 2, 201312:20 am
    by Brigs

    Reply

    Really disapointed about the loss tonite. i think this year their can be no moral victorys, we have the talent to close these games out and we didnt. Can’t put the blame on refs or one play when ur up 5 pts with a min to play a good team finds a way to win while tonite the pistons found a way to lose. 

  • Nov 2, 201312:22 am
    by Max

    Reply

    Even with the miserable call by the refs, the Pistons also technically “lost” the game because Billups missed a free throw.  

  • Nov 2, 201312:30 am
    by jay

    Reply

    Well for it to be the second game of the season, although I’m disappointed in the loss , I’m still just as excited for this year. This is definitely a much more improve team they are just gonna need a lil time jell.  Can’t wait to see Jennings with this front court.  I like will as player just not as a starter.. as far as the goaltending call I can see both sides.. tough call is all u can say about that…. as far as Josh Smith goes I look at it like this for every bad shot he takes,  he does 2 other things well like creating a turnover or dishing a nice pass… so while some fans wanting say Josh cost us the game but I say we wouldn’t have been in the game if it wasn’t for Josh…. 

    • Nov 2, 20134:39 am
      by zdwtr

      Reply

      Agree with the Josh point. He is contagious. His energy on defense. When I see KCP, Stuckey and Josh playing together my heart beats faster

    • Nov 2, 20139:10 am
      by Mike

      Reply

      going to Smith late in the game in the block was a mistake the way he shot?  Monroe in the key… Was obviously much higher %

  • Nov 2, 201312:47 am
    by Max

    Reply

    Where has Laser gone?  I need his bat with Dumars’ picture on it to beat the refs with.  

  • Nov 2, 201312:47 am
    by joe

    Reply

    I’m loving Monroe game so far this season, the Pistons just need to give him more of a leadership role offensively at the end of game, because Monroe is more than capable of making the big play, if given chance.

  • Nov 2, 20131:03 am
    by oats

    Reply

    I really appreciated Pope’s game. He was pretty bad in the first half, but he came on strong in the second. That was good to see, as was him actually making his one attempt from 3. If his gets more selective with his shots and just tries to take what comes to him instead of trying to force things then he could be a valuable role player this year.

    • Nov 2, 20139:22 am
      by Mike

      Reply

      I believe you give KCP 22+ mins / game this year, he’s your obvious starter next year or if we’re lucky this year in the playoffs.  His jumper will come along just like last year at Georgia.  He needs floor time to make that happen.  Cheeks trying to protect KCP by pulling him with 1 min to go likely cost the game Last night.

      Hopefully Cheeks does not pull a “Franks” and not give him mins cuz he’s a rookie. 

  • Nov 2, 20131:33 am
    by sebastian

    Reply

    Patrick, I have typed many times before on this very board that Stuckey can be a very valuable player, when engaged.
    Why, I have been run off (metaphorically, speaking) this board for stating Stuckey’s uniquely important role as a 6th-man, first guard off the bench.
    Realizing that this was only Stuckey’s first game, since making a cameo appearance since the exhibition game in early October, Stuckey’s significant potential contributions to this ’13-’14 Pistons roster can’t be overlooked.
    Stuckey can play this way, every night this season and he probably will if given the chance.

    • Nov 2, 20131:58 am
      by Max

      Reply

      Don’t let yourself get run off the boards.   I’ve been saying the same thing all along about Stuckey and have said a lot of other things people disagree with and criticize me for but that’s no reason to stop participating if you want.   I’m with you, bro.  

    • Nov 2, 20138:45 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      @sebastian:

      1. You’re still here commenting, so technically you haven’t been “run off” any boards. People certainly disagree with you on occasion, but your victim complex is annoying. People disagree with everyone here from time to time. Don’t publish your opinions on the internet if you are sensitive about people reacting to them or not agreeing with them.

      2. You saying that Stuckey can be a valuable player when engaged is not unique. Some variation of that same statement has been made probably by hundreds of different commenters/writers over the last four years or however long this site has existed. It’s a very commonly accepted view of Stuckey — when he’s actively trying, he’s a pretty decent player. When he’s not, he disappears and isn’t worth playing. That’s pretty much been the consensus on Stuckey for as long as Stuckey has been a Piston. 

      • Nov 2, 20139:00 am
        by sebastian

        Reply

        Yo, Patrick, would you stop spanking me. (Again, I’m typing this in metaphoric sense.)
        I’m not new to vitriol that can be retorted on discussion boards, neither here or anywhere else.
        I’m just commenting on how Stuckey is a very, very important element to any success that OUR Pistons will have this season.
        Stuckey’s position as a 6th-man, first guard off the bench cast him in his most proper role, as a Piston going forward, and yes, beyond as I am a proponent of Joe resigning Stuckey.
        But, seriously Patrick, I enjoy your work, here, at the PistonsPowered board.
        Now, let’s get the Celtics, tomorrow.
        DETROIT BASKETBALL!!!

        • Nov 2, 20136:38 pm
          by gtg2013

          Reply

          “Yo, Patrick, would you stop spanking me. (Again, I’m typing this in metaphoric sense.)”
           
          Gee, thanks for that clarification… Uh, why would we think you meant it literally?

    • Nov 3, 201312:45 am
      by jamesjones_det

      Reply

      First, don’t let peoples options and immaturity discouraging you from what you want to say.  You might be right you might be wrong but you should always say what you feel.
       
      I’ve been super critical of Stuckey over the years because I feel like he’s hardly developed given the opportunities he has been given.  However I’m not a fool, I see his value as a 6th man or bench player, he can be an extremely disruptive player to an opposing teams defense given his ability to penetrate into the lane.  I just don’t see a role with him in the starting line-up for many reasons (namely his selfish play and semi suspect passing skills).  So as long has he’s not playing 35 mins a game I’m fine with Stuckey being on this team and I agree he can be extremely helpful to this team.

  • Nov 2, 20131:33 am
    by Javell

    Reply

    Pope dunk was pretty awesome to! Very athletic

  • Nov 2, 20137:17 am
    by Derek AKA Redeemed

    Reply

    Positives:
    matching the physicality of the Grizz
    Stuckey & KCP bringing energy
    Drummond was a monster on the boards

    Negatives:
    blocking call on Moose against Gasol
    questionable goaltending call on Drummond
    Bynum dribbling the ball off his foot
    Stuckey & KCP not returning  down the stretch
    Smith shot too much, Moose should have gotten those shots 

    Takeaway:
    we played a tough team and matched their grit
    we  are way ahead of where we have been over the past 4 to 5 years

  • Nov 2, 20137:18 am
    by greg

    Reply

    I think one point that hasn’t been mentioned really was how bad Singler was on defense. He always was a step late and on offense he took a bad shot with the clock running down. Kcp meanwhile played great defense and let the game come to him. Bynum is such a scrub…sure he can get to the hoop but his defense is lousy. He can’t run the point for us, heck he isn’t even able to throw an inbound pass to smith posting up. He should be the odd man out when jennings returns and just play in case billups takes a game off. Regarding Smith he surely took to many shots. But 2-3 triples were coming with the shot clock winding down. That leaves him at essentially 33% from deep. The thing that worries me is the rest of his shots where he was at 30% something % also…i wonder why they go to smith taking shots with the clock winding down. Even if billups is not on the court i think kcp is the man they should go to since he showed in college that he can hit contestet fadeaway or offbalance shots.

    • Nov 2, 20138:43 am
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      I did mention it in the recap — “Singler shot well, but was a step slow on defense most of the night and was late closing out on shooters”

      I hate the extreme views fans have of Bynum. He’s a productive, fairly reliable rotation player who does have a couple of very noticeable flaws. He’s not a “scrub.” He’s a decent player who has occasionally singlehandedly won games or kept the Pistons in games they had no business being in over the years. He’s probably miscast as a big minutes starter, but he’s played pretty well offensively in both games so far this season.

      • Nov 2, 201312:32 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        Yes.  Bynum played pretty well for a fill in starter.  What do people expect?  I haven’t checked but he must be averaging around 17-18 and 5.

        • Nov 2, 20135:10 pm
          by joe

          Reply

          People expect KCP to start and send Bynum to the bench where he belong, I’m just saying!

          • Nov 3, 20132:53 pm
            by Max

            I don’t really expect KCP to start all season unless Jennings or Billups goes down.   With Jennings only due to miss a couple, I think Cheeks was right to start Bynum so KCP can get used to the role he will continue to play.  

  • Nov 2, 20138:18 am
    by Corey

    Reply

    I am looking forward to Bynum and Billups both playing fewer minutes. Billups can’t handle that many minutes any more, and both are sieves defensively. Together, they are horrible on D. Jennings, Stuckey, and KCP are all better defenders.  I am praying KCP isn’t frozen out of the rotation when everyone is back.

    to those saying Stuckey can be a big contributor: of course he can. The key point, though, is “can” not “will”. He is capable of playing like an all star. He’s done it before for 1-2 month stretches. He just always falls apart and plays very badly for long stretches as well. So no one trusts him anymore. If he keeps it together all year, he will be a huge contributor. But that would be the first time – in his 7th year- he’s able to stay focused and play well and entire season.

  • Nov 2, 20138:42 am
    by Vic

    Reply

    Coach lost it. Subbing Bynum & Billups for Stuckey & KCP when the latter are clearly bigger and better defenders, we’re clearly dominating, scoring efficiently, and it’s late in the game. I would have went with a Stckey free throw/ Moose post up offense and won it at the free throw line.

    Somebody needs to track Smith vs Moose shot attempts. I’d be willing to prognosticate that wins & losses will correlate with which PF has the most shot attempts.
     

    • Nov 2, 20138:45 am
      by Vic

      Reply

      Don’t get me wrong I love J Smooth when he’s playing his game, not running the offense. Smith is basically a superstar utility player, not someone who needs to lead the team in shot attempts

      • Nov 2, 201312:45 pm
        by frankie d

        Reply

        “superstar utility player”…
        i think that is a great way to describe how smith should play.  
        and if he would be satisfied in being that kind of player, he could be invaluable to this pistons’ team.
        unfortunately, i think he sees himself as “the man” on the team and we are just seeing the beginnings of problems associated with having him on this squad.  and unfortunately, he is simply playing the way he played for the majority of his career in atlanta.
        monroe should have been the guy with 20 + shots last night.  no one could handle him.  in fact, memphis – which supposedly has one of the biggest, toughest front lines in the league – could not handle the monroe/drummond combination.  zebo did his usual damage and gasol had some clutch moments, but they were back on their heels most of the night.  while smith did lots of good things – hustle, scrambling defense, running the floor, rebounding, assists – his atrocious shooting and ballhandling – how come no one has mentioned the 5 turnovers? – was a huge problem for the team all night.  and when they finally took advantage of the fact that old crippled-a@@ mike miler was trying to guard him, he posts miller up about 15 feet from the basket and takes a couple of long jump hooks.
        never liked the signing from the beginning and i like it less now.
        this team is talented enough to get to .500 and make the playoffs, but it is going nowhere as long as a braindead guy like smith is taking such a central role in the team’s offense.
        on a more positive note, i will give it up for kcp.  he looked great.  solid defense, good activity and he looked much more confident offensively.  what i liked best was that he was simply not settling for the open jumper.  looks like the scouting report on him was that he would not put the ball on the floor and kcp blew that up a couple of times by taking that open lane to the basket and getting to the rim.  while i still would have like to have seen detroit do something more with that number 8 pick, kcp definitely looks like he could be a real keeper.  and that he could fit very well next to a point guard who can – and will – get him the ball.

  • Nov 2, 201310:11 am
    by NotSoBigZ

    Reply

    Just when Stuckey came back, Pistons lost. Coincidence? I think not.  

    • Nov 2, 201312:54 pm
      by Max

      Reply

      Stuckey probably played better than any Piston last night and the game wouldn’t have been close without him.   Your post makes no sense.  

      • Nov 2, 20132:23 pm
        by NotSoBigZ

        Reply

        Yeah I know, I am just joking.

    • Nov 2, 20131:47 pm
      by DoctorDaveT

      Reply

      Look at the +/- and tell me again that Stuckey made us lose.
      Please.

  • Nov 2, 201310:13 am
    by RalphHau

    Reply

    I will give Stuck a lot of credit for last night’s game, however, we all know Stuck…will he play the same every night or just when he feels like it$$$$$$

  • Nov 2, 20132:25 pm
    by pistons moribund

    Reply

    The pistons was actually watchable for a change.  Stemmed some runs made by the Griz which would have turned into a route in years past.  Cannot expect such a quick turn around especially with some of the same players unless they were all gone.  All about expectations.  MFWB is frustrating to watch as always, makes some great play but will counter with something awful, sometimes works, sometimes doesn’t, same old same old.  Bullwinkle can’t defend or hit a jump shot to save his life, but still great around the basket and had some good assists.  Stuckey will be great at times and will also suck for a net loss.  The problem is that all the players of old will result in a net loss.  Until that net turns positive, cant really depend on them to win close games against good teams.  At least KCP and J Smooth will play great consistent defense, which makes up for their bad decision making at times.  The horrible thing about MFWB is his defensive “shortcomings” and mind farts are only mitigated when he plays out of his mind, which is not that often.  Tony Allen is a great example of someone who is a great asset despite then fact that he has 0 offense.  I would rather that that, ala KCP(for now), then someone who cant defend, hence the notable frustration of watch the end of close games while people blow by MFWB and Bullwinkle. 
    If Jennings is willing to play good D, then I wouldn’t mind the bad shots.  As long a the net is positive.
     
     

  • Nov 2, 20134:12 pm
    by anacaniwelk

    Reply

    Yeah, Drummond’s defense on Gasol and Randolph killed the Pistons chances to win. Cheeks hoped Billups would be able to knock shots down like he did in game one, but it didn’t happen. No problem with Billups on the floor late in a close game if only for his ability to knock free throws down, same with Stuckey. Stuckey should have been on the floor.  Good to see Pope play well.

  • Nov 2, 20139:03 pm
    by Anthony

    Reply

    Wow !!  Such negative comments after 1 loss.  The loss was against a team that played in the Western Conference Finals and that knows each other very well. This team has to grow together and with 8 new faces there will be games like this.  All things considered I like the direction and will delay criticism especially after such a small sample size to go on.  

  • Nov 3, 20131:59 am
    by David

    Reply

    Everybody talking about the goal tend, if we just would have made free throws down the stretch Billups missed a key free throw, Drummond missed 2 all 3 were in the fourth quarter that could have been the game 

  • Nov 3, 201310:28 am
    by Paul Berringer

    Reply

    Come share the experience at Movoli….talk smack, engange in discussion, share video and photo, and more…all around tonight’s game with Boston

    http://movoli.com/event/4564/detroit-vs-boston/11-03-2013#

  • Nov 3, 20132:36 pm
    by Pimp Zombie

    Reply

    So uhhh….yeahhhh…on a slightly differrent topic…I cant help but notice MCW beasting out there in Philly….Kinda how I said he would….and that he’d be a killer…..and everyone here laughed when I said the Pistons shouldve got him…..Yes. I will have my cookie now.

    • Nov 3, 20133:05 pm
      by oats

      Reply

      He’s been a much better pro through 3 games than he was as a college player. He is scoring more, shooting a higher percentage, and turning it over less in the NBA than he did in college. I don’t see how anyone could look at what he did in college and expect this from him coming out of the gate. I will say this, remember when Brandon Jennings was a world beater for 11 games and now he’s just a solid but unspectacular starter? MCW has been tremendous, but there is only so much you can read into 3 games in October/November.

      • Nov 3, 20133:57 pm
        by Pimp Zombie

        Reply

        Fair…but he did it against MIA and CHI……and lets say he does fall off by a 3rd…thats still 15 pts 5 rebs and 6 assists…better than anything DET has at the PG position when you factor in MCW is 6-7…MCW meant we could’ve passed on Josh Smith and surrounded MCW, Monroe and Drummond with SHOOTERS…now THAT is a dangerous team and inexpensive one as well.

        • Nov 3, 20134:40 pm
          by frankie d

          Reply

          i agree with that take, even though MCW would have been third on my PG list – behind burke and mccollum. 
          still would have taken him over kcp, even if he looks like he’s going to be a solid player.  
          it is always easier to find a 3 and d wing guy than a bona fide star nba point guard.
          and you are absolutely right about passing on smith and getting a cheap, dangerous team of shooters.
          the fix for the team was so obvious and inexpensive and easy, it hurts to see how joe d has gummed up the works for the next couple of years by handing out another round of expensive contracts to very flawed, though talented, players.
          (i have the sinking feeling that the true intention behind signing smith was to set the stage to trade monroe.  which i think will be another one of those hugely negative turning points, like trading chauncey was.
          what is so ironic about the pistons team now is that, even after spending all of that money, it is still searching for consistent shooters. 

          • Nov 3, 20136:39 pm
            by Pimp Zombie

            Back in the “Draft Dreams” feature I had him no.1 over Burke….Burke was a great college player…but in the pros he is Jameer Nelson at best….If you are 6 feet tall youd better be lightning quick and an elite ballhandler…Burke is neither….and neither is MCW…but my arguement was that u cant teach court vision and you cant teach long lanky size…mcw has them both in spades and once he gets that Jason Kidd three pt shot he will be a star. I dreamed of him throwing lobs to drummond and drive n kicking to JJ reddick or OJ Mayo or a Danny Granger picked up from indy…..ah well 

  • Nov 3, 20138:14 pm
    by James

    Reply

    MCW has all star potential, absolutely. And put me in the minority of anti-Monroe fans, I just don’t like his game. Tries to be finesse to often, no killer instinct whatsoever. He is the Prince Fielder of the NBA. And if they give him a max contract they will never get past the second round with him as a feature.

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