↓ Login/Logout ↓
Schedule/Results
↓ Roster ↓
Salaries
↓ Archives ↓
↓ About ↓

Coach benches best player, who shows frustration but won’t talk about it

Andre Drummond got benched twice in the Pistons’ loss to the Mavericks on Sunday.

What gives?

Vincent Goodwill of The Detroit News:

Drummond didn’t want to speak to the media after the game. He was clearly bothered by what happened.

Maurice Cheeks, via David Mayo of MLive:

“It was about his play, just about his play,” Cheeks said of the quick hook. “He went right back in. It’s a learning experience to do what we’re trying to do out of a timeout (actually halftime), and I don’t think he did it right. We took him out, we put him right back in.”

“He just had a bad game,” Cheeks said. “The guy’s 20 years old. We’re not going to expect him to be like a machine every night, to go get 18, 19 rebounds. He’s 20 years old. He didn’t have a good game.”

I tried to sort through what happened at ProBasketballTalk.

29 Comments

  • Jan 28, 20147:26 am
    by gmehl

    Reply

    So I was wondering… has Cheeks hit buffoonery level yet? You just know Tayshaun is laughing his ass off over in Memphis.

  • Jan 28, 20147:42 am
    by I HATE LOSING (Predicting A Strong Finish)

    Reply

    I don’t mind benching any player who is not playing well…but what he did at the start of the 3rd qrt wasI how you treat a kid…he does out in the pull…you pull him just because you can…and then send h in just because u can

  • Jan 28, 20148:01 am
    by I HATE LOSING (Predicting A Strong Finish)

    Reply

    I don’t mind benching any player who is not playing well…but what he did at the start of the 3rd qrt was how you treat a kid…he goes out there for 12 seconds…then you pull him…then holds him there and puts him back in the game when you feel fit to….where is the teaching moment? 
    Cheeks is losing or lost this team…

  • Jan 28, 20148:42 am
    by Mike

    Reply

    He should be pulled if he can’ execute an Nba play. This whole team is gross. Two best players out of position, pg can’t stop penetration even on Jose Calderon. Nobody can shoot. Terrible inbounds plays and zero defensive scheme from cheeks. Smith gets all the blame, but this a collective team turd…

  • Jan 28, 20148:53 am
    by Ryank

    Reply

    Okay, so are we to believe this is the result of a single play?  Yank the kid because he missed a defensive assignment on a single play?  This is absurd.  Drummond took the game off and Cheeks say that through the first half.  He reacted the the first play of he second half being a continuation of the no effort first half.
     
    I have seen this throughout the season from Drummond.  He just lays down sometimes…stops trying.  If you haven’t seen it, you haven’t been watching closely.  It’s scary when he just stops playing…doesn’t care, checks out, whatever you want to call it, it’s not good!
     
    Drummond is the best player, but he’s been soft on defense most of the season.  When they mentioned his motor as a concern, I’m not sure this is what they meant…or maybe it is this.  Perhaps he’ll get hungry and never take a play off as he matures and learns.  But at this point it’s obvious we are not going to be able to count on him all the time during the regular season.  
     
    Maybe playoff basketball will be bring out an Drummond who plays hard every second he’s on the floor.  But I will be beside myself if I see him stop playing defense during important moments of the playoff…assuming the playoffs are in his future.

    • Jan 28, 20149:00 am
      by Edgar

      Reply

      The guy’s been one of the best five centers in the league all year. He’s a double-double machine. I don’t think his effort is a huge issue. I think he’s frustrated at the losses, specifically the NOLA loss which was brutal despite a huge effort from him. This is speculation, but I think he’s frustrated that lesser players who take bad shots and make dumb mistakes have longer leashes than he does and get more shots and more minutes than he does. 

      • Jan 28, 201410:59 am
        by Ryank

        Reply

        I don’t doubt his talent or his upside.  Where I do have a concern is his effort sometimes.  Getting max effort out of a guy his size all the time is not realistic, but watching him lay down and do nothing is frustrating/scary.  It’s not that he’s tired…he just stops playing.
         
        This wasn’t the first time I’ve seen him just give up and stop playing.  Cheeks yanked him from a game right away earlier in the season when he did it…I was watching him and couldn’t believe what I saw…no effort to get a rebound and no effort to stop his man from getting a layup.  This is what we saw from CBill back in 2006 when Jason Williams single handedly carried the Heat to victory…CBill checked out mentally.  
         
        He might be the best player in the league if he polishes a low-post game where they can’t stop him in single coverage…  But these lapses are a major concern for a guy they’ll invest $80 million into in a couple years.  Heart?  Motor?  Whatever it is, it’s more of a concern to me than his free throw shooting because if this shows up in game 7 at some point we will lose because of it.

        • Jan 28, 201411:24 am
          by sebastian

          Reply

          Pistons Pals: Let’s not overlooked the role of the PG at keeping the Center engaged. Kareem had Oscar and Magic. Shaq had Penny. And, Dre has had Will B.

        • Jan 28, 20145:26 pm
          by oats

          Reply

          He’s one of the 2 best rebounders in the league. If his effort was a problem then his rebounding numbers wouldn’t be nearly this good. Everyone has off nights from time to time, but Drummond has been remarkably consistent for any NBA player.

          • Jan 28, 20145:56 pm
            by gmehl

            Yep it’s almost like you blink and he already has 12pts and 12rebs

  • Jan 28, 20148:57 am
    by Edgar

    Reply

    The underlying problem here is that Cheeks doesn’t understand that Drummond is his best player. Even the best players in the league will make boneheaded mistakes or bad plays every now and again, but they don’t get pulled because it’s understood how important they are to their team’s performance. If Cheeks really understood how good Drummond is, Drummond would be playing 40 minutes a night. Cheeks would rather die than replace Drummond with Kyle Singler or whoever. But, Cheeks thinks his best player is Josh Smith. Drummond has to be super frustrated. He probably knows he’s the best player, but he gets treated like a second-round rookie. 

  • Jan 28, 20149:10 am
    by gmehl

    Reply

    Someone mentioned it in another post that they noticed Drummond getting frustrated due to not being utilized enough on offense. When you have Smith and Jennings launching 30+ shots per game between them while you have to watch I guess you have to ask yourself if you’d be frustrated too. If you cast your mind back to when Flip Saunders was the Pistons coach he had many a run in with Big Ben because they didn’t utilize him on offense. We were pretty much going 4 on 5 on offense then expecting Ben to do all the dirty work on defence. Yeah that was his job to be a defensive specialist but if you’ve ever played competitive basketball then you’d know that even as a defensive player every now and then it’s nice to have your number called. Anyways long story short Big Ben got the shits and fled to Chicago which was pretty much the beginning of then end of us being a title contender. I’m not saying that things will go that way with Dre but it would be nice if they started giving more offensive opportunities.

    • Jan 28, 20149:26 am
      by Edgar

      Reply

      Agreed. It must be especially frustrating for Drummond because there’s actually evidence that he’s a pretty decent scorer if he can get the ball around the basket (much more so than Ben). I think he’s pretty confident in his ability to finish at the rim and it must be frustrating to not get opportunities.

    • Jan 28, 201410:06 am
      by bonerici

      Reply

      ben wallace went to chicago for a paycheck we would not match chicago’s offer, that’s all there is to it.  It was a different Joe Dumar’s not afraid to let a player go if the price was too high.  Modern Joe Dumars can’t wait to spend money, he’s lost his mind.

      • Jan 28, 20143:31 pm
        by gmehl

        Reply

        Go back and watch the games and look closer. Ben was definitely offended when they overlooked him on that end. The name of the game is reward you bigs.

    • Jan 28, 201411:01 am
      by JYD for Life

      Reply

      Larry Brown recognized it and even Flip eventually compromised and they would run a play or two for Ben.  
      I’m not saying run the offense through Drummond, but he can’t be happy standing there and watching 18 of Smith’s 24 questionable shots every game.  I get annoyed and I’m on the couch.  Drummond is trying to fight for position to clean up the crap and does not get the respect he should as a “franchise cornerstone.”  
       
      Even if he’s less than skilled, if he’s not involved, that aspect of his game will never evolve.  
      I also don’t think you can humiliate him by removing him at the end of games because of his free throw shooting.  Let him miss some that cost us games and that probably is the best way to motivate him to turn that around.   

      • Jan 28, 201411:57 am
        by Tim Thielke

        Reply

        “I also don’t think you can humiliate him by removing him at the end of games because of his free throw shooting.”

        Even if the coach’s primary concern was making Drummond feel good, rather than trying to win games, you think it’s more humiliating to be taken out than to have the other team repeatedly foul you because they know you’ll only hit about 30%?

        “Let him miss some that cost us games and that probably is the best way to motivate him to turn that around.”

        Right, because the reason he misses so many free throws isn’t that he’s bad at shooting free throws, it’s that he doesn’t want to hit them bad enough.

      • Jan 28, 201412:09 pm
        by MIKEYDE248

        Reply

        There are players that could practice shooting free throws or three pointers 10 hours a day every day and still never be good at it.  Sure he might get a little better, but just assume he will be a 50% or worse free throw shooter his whole career.

  • Jan 28, 20149:50 am
    by James

    Reply

    Lawrence Frank all over again. Noone gets better on the bench, especially when you are regarded as the future of the franchise. This coach and GM belong in a porcelain bowl going down in a slow swirl with tissue following!

  • Jan 28, 201410:09 am
    by V.

    Reply

    i thought we lost to Dallas on Sunday  
     
     

  • Jan 28, 201410:31 am
    by Tim Thielke

    Reply

    I have no problem with benching Drummond when he’s having a bad game like this. It’s Cheeks’ insistence of yanking him the moment he hits “foul trouble” that gets to me.

  • Jan 28, 201410:55 am
    by James

    Reply

    All of this is directly connected to Dumars and his coaching merry-go-round. None of the big name coaches would accept this job with Dumars still in that office. Larry Brown came because he knew that team was experienced, deep and ready to win. This team as currently constructed would need Red Auerbach, Larry B AND Popovich to get the most out of it. This will continue under Dumars, he not only has lost his team, but he has also lost the respect in the coaching world. And I’m personally ready to crown Brandon Jennings the next Steve Frances, he won’t be in the league much longer. He simply chooses the AND 1 generation of basketball instead of running set plays, pick and roll, pick and pop, give and go, their fast breaks look like a middle school team drill. Just too many negative factors to get any positives out of it.

    • Jan 28, 201411:05 am
      by MIKEYDE248

      Reply

      I kinda thought that their fast breaks were about the only thing this team had going for it.
      Cheeks doesn’t seem like he has any plays in his playbook, so most of them end up with someone dribbling the ball until the shot clock is down to 4 seconds and then either heaving up a shot or dumping it off to someone that doesn’t have time to get off a good shot.

  • Jan 28, 201411:07 am
    by Vic

    Reply

    Drummond is an emotional player and he responds negatively to team dysfunction, that’s why he did not perform to his potential at uconn. German is a double double machine, and it will take a lot of stupidity, selflishness, dysfunction, and bad decision-making to turn him off to giving it his all. I have little doubt the Pistons will continue to provide plenty of that, and it will continue to affect him, until either the GM, coach, point guard, or small forward is removed from the organization.

  • Jan 28, 201411:10 am
    by MIKEYDE248

    Reply

    I think Cheeks has lost the team and there will probably be more and more benchings of all the players as they all start to get more frustrated with him.  Unfortunately I don’t see the Pistons getting rid of him until after the season.

  • Jan 28, 201411:25 am
    by MarkButter

    Reply

    I would have to guess, given the reaction of Monroe & Pope after the play (forget Jennings, he’s pissed because he didn’t get a shot), that they specifically called this play and Drummond appeared to “go thru the motions.”
     
    Given our 3rd quarter starts and the fact we were behind, coming out of the locker room and running specifically what was called the way it was called – and given the reactions – Dre’ didn’t follow thru all the way on the play.
     
    My guess is was to be a hard screen with a lob to get him going – a play specfically called for him – and he didn’t take advantage.  Granted, Jennings should be on a much shorter leash, but I’ll take Cheeks at his word and it’s no big deal and I expect Drummond to have a monster game tonight because Orlando doesn’t have any bigs available.

  • Jan 28, 201411:47 am
    by James

    Reply

    I will bet you a CYBER 6 PACK they will lose tonight as well, bigs or not!

    • Jan 28, 20144:56 pm
      by gmehl

      Reply

      Bet or no bet I guess tonight we’ll really see if we’re tanking or not

  • Leave a Reply

    Your Ad Here