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Did Chauncey Billups support Josh Smith’s bid to get Maurice Cheeks fired?

Peter Vecsey:

Source reveals Cheeks was doomed when Josh went 2 Dumars & wanted Mo fired & Billups went w him.

Trust Vecsey at your own peril.

You can read my thoughts at ProBasketballTalk.


  • Feb 23, 201411:35 am
    by tiko


    Fuck this guy.  Can we start a movement to make him irrelevant? 

    • Feb 23, 201411:56 am
      by Parsons


      Smith, Cheeks, or Dumars? I like to think at this point being a Piston IS the path to irrelevance.

  • Feb 23, 201411:49 am
    by frankie d


    vescey is one of the worst examples of nepotism – ever – but occasionally even he gets something right.  
    if smith did try to get cheeks fired, its one of the few times he’s done anything that showed smarts.  
    the bad thing is that, if true, it simply continues the long, sordid tradition of players going directly to dumars to undermine their coach.  that manner of dealing with coach/player/management issues is the biggest reason dumars has had so little success with his coaches over the last half decade. players know that they can always go directly to the big boss and there is no real or effective chain of command.

    • Feb 24, 201410:22 am
      by MIKEYDE248


      I think most of the problems that Dumars has had with his coaches over that last 1/2 decade has been hiring bad coaches.

  • Feb 23, 20141:12 pm
    by I HATE LOSING (Predicting A Strong Finish)


    Who cares…no one wanted Cheeks we should be thankful if its true

    • Feb 23, 20144:42 pm
      by oats


      The only thing Cheeks had going for him was that he was a really likeable personality, so any sign of him losing the locker room probably should have gotten him fired. Yet it is important if he was fired because he is a bad coach who lost his players or if he was fired because Josh Smith wanted him fired. If it’s the former it’s not really a big deal, although it might say something about the amount of power Smith thinks he should have as a team leader. If it’s the latter that tells us a lot about the player/coach power dynamic, and it would strongly suggest that the franchise still sees Smith as a key piece in some capacity. That makes it at least noteworthy if the report is accurate.

  • Feb 23, 20141:33 pm
    by Doc


    I’d put my money on Dre going to Gores, or Gores going to Dre at some point to verify what is truly happening.

  • Feb 23, 20141:33 pm
    by jay


    Dumars didn’t pull the trigger on cheeks that was all gores… Dumars did not. Want to fire Dumars 50 Games into the season 

  • Feb 23, 20142:43 pm
    by Jon


    I can’t imagine anyone needed to suggest Mo’s firing… his performance had said all Gores needed to hear.

  • Feb 23, 20146:49 pm
    by gmehl


    First things first here there is no doubt that Cheeks deserved to be fired but if this report is correct its a worrying sign for any future coaching hires. I mean put it this way… if your a coach thinking about interviewing for the Pistons coaching gig and you hear about this kind of thing going down (players running to Dumars) you would seriously think twice about taking the job unless your a coach without HC experience or one with a bad record (see Curry, Kuester, Frank and Cheeks). So you’d assume the only way to break this cycle would be to cut out the issue and fire Dumars. It still doesn’t solve the issue of Gores being buddy with Drummond but as of today i guess we’re lucky Dre has a good head on his shoulders and doesn’t seem like he has it in him to be a malcontent. Someone mentioned it above that the chain of command in this organisation is totally f**ked.

    • Feb 23, 20146:51 pm
      by gmehl


      It’s also probably worth noting that we couldn’t even entice coaches like Mike Budenholzer and Brian Shaw.

      • Feb 23, 20147:57 pm
        by CityofKlompton


        Yes, that is the troubling thought if this report has any truth to it. In rare cases should a player ever feel that comfortable to be able to circumvent a coach and ask to have him fired like this. Not only should a player who is supposed to be a leader not feel that sense of entitlement (especially when you are a lead dog on a team that hasn’t sniffed the playoffs in half a decade,) but that does leave a bad taste in the mouths of any future coaching prospects for the team. The team has had this cloud of entitlement cast upon the locker room for several seasons now, and if Josh Smith is making moves like this, it suggests that the organization is no further along in team development than they were when the infamous walk-out happened.

  • Feb 23, 20148:04 pm
    by sebastian


    … as the Detroit Pistons 2013-2014 NBA season turns.

  • Feb 23, 20148:29 pm
    by Travis


    I have a different take on the Pistons coaching search. I would want to be hired by the Pistons. It’s a sweetheart deal – you get fired 1 year into a 2 year contract, but you still get paid for the final year AND you collect two paychecks if you become an assistant coach the following season. That sounds like a no-brainier contract to me.

  • Feb 23, 20149:31 pm
    by Ryank


    Whether or not Vecsey’s report is accurate…doesn’t matter.  But if it is true, it discredits the blogger posts on this site.  It’s been noted that Dumars has gone silent throughout this change…I think that’s an indication he was not in agreement with the firing.  
    My guess is Dumars didn’t want Cheeks fired.  Looking back through the coaches fired, Dumars is only given credit for firing 2-3 (Saunders, Curry)…the others were the owner’s decision.  In addition, he supposedly only hired 4 of them (Carlisle, Saunders, Curry, Cheeks).  
    So while the media (and bloggers) pile on Dumars, it’s only fair to point out that at least half the time he wasn’t behind the wheel when the car went into the ditch.  It’s also fair to point out that his best hire (Carlisle) would have been here much longer if the owner didn’t fire him…maybe he would still be here.  Carlisle is universally considered one of the top coaches in the NBA.

  • Feb 23, 201410:04 pm
    by James


    Its no secret that Josh Smith signed here with PROMISES from Dumars that Smith would be the leader of this time. Smith said as much on the day he was announced a Piston. Gore’s hired Cheeks, Phil Jack lobbied for Shaw but also mentioned Cheeks to him as a in-between coach until the team improves to warrant the significant coaching hire at a later date.  Either way, the franchise has pinned its hopes on two NEVER GOING TO BE ELITE PLAYERS in Smith and Jennings. Comparing Jennings to Knight and Burke makes no difference in the fact that he will NEVER lead a real team because he has that foolish notion of how GOOD HE THINKS HE IS PERSONALLY.
    Joe has had a LOVE AFFAIR with 2 certain players since 03,  IVERSON AND SMITH. Remember the failed Iverson trade in 03 because of the physical by the Philly center included in trade talks? Obviously Jennings reminds Joe of Iverson and he has Smith now. If that is his dream duo, HERE IT IS!!!!!!  

  • Feb 24, 20148:16 am
    by Kevin


    Pistons-Warriors Game Preview, featuring advanced statistics and player-by-player analysis.

  • Feb 24, 201412:03 pm
    by Keith


    So does it seem to anyone else like we are dashing headlong into the disaster zone? The Pistons are legitimately worse than all the Eastern teams currently in the playoffs. Moreover, a 3 game deficit in the win column could be insurmountable already (looking at the schedule, I only saw 6 more games we could be favored).
    We are currently 2 wins ahead of the 8th worst record, at 10th worst overall right now. 1 team behind us (NY) is legitimately trying to win because they have no pick. 2 teams behind us have performed better overall than the Pistons (NY, Sac), despite the difference in record (this is due almost entirely to those teams having played a tougher schedule).
    Continuing to pursue the playoffs like it is a realistic option will do nothing but assure we lose everything. Right now the Pistons stand with a 12% chance of making the playoffs. 12% is barely a chance at all. So instead of continuing to play the worst odds (which seems to have been Joe’s entire plan in constructing this roster), we should be blatantly tanking. We are closer to the 8th pick than the playoffs. We are already a huge longshot to even make the playoffs. It’s time to start playing for what we can realistically win – the 8th pick or better.

    • Feb 24, 20141:31 pm
      by Ryank


      I’ve believed the pistons have played below their potential the last 4-5 years.  It’s a reflection on coaching.  The problem is not many coaches would be willing to come here with the team’s reputation for hiring and firing…not unless the contract is a sweet deal.  I’m not sure how Gores feels about handing out sweet deals.
      Doug Collins, George Karl, Phil Jackson, Jerry Sloan, Larry Brown, Van Gundy(s) would all have pushed the team into the playoffs this season.  Guys who know what they’re doing and command respect…that’s what’s been missing the last 5 years.
      I don’t think we have the personnel to contend at any point with the current roster…but you have to get over the hill before you can make the tweaks to take the next step.  You can’t build a championship team out of the lottery unless you make no mistakes drafting players and get 2-3 hall of famers.  The Spurs and Thunder did it through the draft…they’re the only ones I can think of to do it.  -and the Spurs tanked to get Duncan.

      • Feb 24, 20145:59 pm
        by CityofKlompton


        Just off the top of my head, I would venture to say that Indiana, Chicago, Golden State, and Portland built the core of their teams through the draft lottery – either by selecting a player, or immediately trading for their rights on draft night or the days afterward, much like OKC and SA have. Sure, they signed some FA’s and made some savvy deals along the way too, but a good front office is going to do that to surround their high draft picks with complementary pieces.
        Unfortunately for us Pistons fans, so far Detroit has only tried putting expensive square pegs into obviously round holes with their moves outside of their solid draft selections.

        • Feb 25, 20141:27 am
          by George


          James – “Its no secret that Josh Smith signed here with PROMISES from Dumars that Smith would be the leader of this time. Smith said as much on the day he was announced a Piston. ”
          James, perhaps you can write your own reality series to help quell your schizophrenia. Seriously, this is not real life. “Leader of the team” is not a real designation. I’m sure he tried to sell Smith on a positive vision, but you don’t promise players things you dont control. Things are a little less soap opera and a little more professional than you imagine. 

        • Feb 25, 20141:50 am
          by George


          Tanking – Cant do it. Cant bench 23 year old kids trying to prove their games without getting a law suit from the NBAPA. It doesn’t happen. 30 year old vets with 5 playoffs and 30 mill in the bank want to sit out, these guys dont. 
          Second problem the tank community whiffs on, the worst thing would not be losing the pick. The worst thing would be keeping the pick and losing an even better pick next year. 

          The pistons arnt as far away as it seems. They need significant maturation of several of their players and a really good wing. Nothing wrong with the 3 big rotation, Smiths contract is nowhere near as bad as its painted. He is still a valuable piece as a PF, even if its 30 mpg off the bench. And he’ll expire in Drummonds first re-up season. His contract is not hampering us, he was really a pure addition, but people want a direct correllation between money and us not being good yet. 

          Jennings was a worthwhile gamble imo too. At worst he’s an expiring contract in just over a year and a tradeable piece as a 6th man scoring guard. His contract is not bad at all and we didn’t give up anything significant for him. (Unless Knight blows up, but he certainly wasn’t leading us to the promised land this year either)
          Pistons need a wing. Go get Lance Stephenson, coach Drummond how to play D, move smith to backup PF, get some discipline and maturity and this thing could turn around on a dime next year. :) 

          • Feb 25, 201411:19 am
            by koz

            what if both middleton and knight both blow up for that 27 foot leaning back fallin away chucker? what do you say about the trade then? an unnecessary trade in my opinion. dumars once said that he wouldn’t push the panic button and blow the team up back in 2008 -09 and thats exactly what he did when giving the nuggets two damn good starters for that washed up-chucker iverson. all the big free agent signings since then including smith and jennings speak of the same panicked desperation he overpays mediocre talent and undervalues under-evaluates and and under-develops the talent he drafted.

  • Feb 24, 20141:30 pm
    by sebastian


    All I want to know is: When are Josh and Chauncey going to Gores or Joe to ask to have Loyer fired? His Interim experiment can end now, as far as I am concerned

  • Feb 24, 20141:55 pm
    by Reaction


    Listen. I doubt anything Josh Smith would say would carry any weight whatsoever in getting someone fired. Hell, the Pistons would have loved to trade him so why would they listen to him. Chauncey may have said something but then again if he did he must have had a good reason. Chauncey is one of the Pistons that I still trust and believe would not try to screw someone over without having a logical reason.

  • Feb 24, 20146:29 pm
    by BadBoyEst.1984


    The major problem they have is bringing in talent. The trade deadline ended last Thursday and we didn’t go after Granger or Evans. Granger is still a 20/10 man with the right team but we always give big contracts to washed up players. Dumars needs to be ousted and they need a defensive minded coach cuz they definitely underachieved this year. The only reason they’re relevant now  is cuz of Drummond and he’s not going to duplicate a stellar performance every night.

    • Feb 24, 20147:10 pm
      by CityofKlompton


      To be clear, trading for an injury prone, past-his-prime wing in a contract year would be different than making deals for washed up players? I am confused…

    • Feb 25, 20141:34 am
      by George


      BadBoysEst.1984 - Really? Granger wasn’t even that efficient when he still had in tact knees. He’s nothing more than a vet. bench player on a good team.
      It does seem that Turner would have made some sense. But there may be another agenda.

      If you want a Pacer, point your eyes at Lance Stephenson, I think the Pistons may actually have a good shot at him. He’s a UFA they can’t afford and he’s and burgeoning stud who fits exact needs. 

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