February Pistons articles *Updated Daily*

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  1. Zoso

    Zoso First Round Draft Pick

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    February 1st -


    ~ Detroit News ~

    Nets 91, Pistons 84
    Nets stop Pistons' win streak at 11
    Detroit tries to rally in fourth quarter, but 36.6% shooting leads to this sixth loss
    By Chris McCosky

    This was bound to happen.

    Sooner or later, the shots weren't going to fall, the defense wasn't going to be as stout and the opponent was just going to be more desperate.

    Sooner or later, the Pistons weren't going to be able to flip the switch and make a team go away.

    It happened Tuesday night at Continental Airlines Arena.

    The Nets, riding a four-game losing streak and losers in eight of their last 11, built a 10-point lead late in the third quarter and held off a wild Pistons rally in the fourth.

    "For whatever reason, we just weren't as mentally alert," coach Flip Saunders said after the Nets held on for a 91-84 victory, ending the Pistons' 11-game win streak.

    Pistons: Notebook
    Billups unsure of U.S. Plans
    commitment to team depends on schedule of guard, whose wife will give birth this summer
    By Chris McCosky

    In just a couple of short years, Chauncey Billups has gone from a vagabond player bouncing from team to team, to NBA champion and NBA Finals MVP, to most likely his first All-Star appearance this season and now, perhaps, a U.S. Olympian.

    Not bad work.

    "It's crazy, man," Billups said after shoot-around Tuesday. "It just shows that I've come a long way. It's an unbelievable honor to have that opportunity, and really to be in a position to be considered, it's great. I am loving it."

    Jerry Colangelo, managing director of the U.S. men's national basketball team, told The News on Monday that there is a spot on the team for Billups and the only question is finalizing the commitment.

    Fantasy sports
    Top rebounders enhance a team's playoff chances
    By Sean Baligian

    Take a look at the top scorers in the NBA -- it's the usual suspects.
    You see Kobe, AI, and LeBron all averaging more than 30 points.
    Scoring is one thing, though.

    Rebounding now that's another source for pounding your chest any week during fantasy play.

    So, if you're in a league that rewards the big hands, here are a few names to look at...

    ~ Detroit Free Press ~

    Snagged by Nets
    Kidd is the key in ending Pistons' 11-game win streak
    By Shannon Shelton

    Two streaks ended Tuesday night at Continental Airlines Arena.

    The New Jersey Nets broke their four-game losing streak, 91-84, and ended the Pistons' 11-game winning streak that dated to Jan. 10.

    The Pistons (37-6) shot 36.6% from the field, well below the 46.4% in their previous games.

    They also failed to follow the rule that usually results in victories against New Jersey (23-20) -- never let Jason Kidd get too many good looks at the basket.

    Billups puts baby before basketball
    By Shannon Shelton

    Chauncey Billups said he wouldn't play in the world championships this summer in Japan if it meant he wouldn't be around for the birth of his third child.

    But Billups said he would consider it if the selection committee made an exception that would allow him to be with his wife, Piper, as she approaches her August due date. That remains a possibility.

    The world championships will be Aug. 19 through Sept. 3, and the team that competes in 2006 would represent the United States in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

    ~ Booth Newspapers ~

    Pistons off in loss to Nets
    By A. Sherrod Blakely

    Flip Saunders has been around the Detroit Pistons long enough to see them play just about every way imaginable.

    However, Tuesday night's 91-84 loss to the New Jersey Nets was something he has rarely seen.

    The 37-6 Pistons, whose 11-game winning streak came to an end, showed a lack of focus and an inability to make big plays down the stretch when the game was up for grabs.

    "The way we were playing," said Saunders, in his first season as Pistons coach, "I thought we'd be down by 15."

    Despite loss, Pistons had a great January
    By A. Sherrod Blakely

    Despite Tuesday's 91-84 loss against New Jersey, the Detroit Pistons finished January with one of the best months in franchise history.

    Detroit's success will likely result in head coach Flip Saunders being named the Eastern Conference's coach of the month for the third consecutive month, something no NBA coach has ever done.

    The Pistons had a 13-2 record in January, tying the franchise record for most wins for that month.

    ~ The Oakland Press ~

    Can't win 'em all
    Detroit goes cold (except for Billups) in sluggish loss to Nets
    By Dana Gauruder

    Hold the 70-win talk for a while.

    The Pistons can't do it every game. Some nights, they can even look like an ordinary team.

    Their 91-84 loss to New Jersey on Tuesday night is a prime example.

    They shot poorly, got outhustled and suffered defensive lapses at crucial moments as their 11-game winning streak, an NBA season high, was halted.

    Chauncey Billups scored 30 points, but they still came up two games shy of their franchise record for consecutive wins.

    ~ New York Daily News ~

    For Nets, no Place like home
    bounce back to stun Pistons
    By Ohm Youngmisuk

    A tense fourth quarter was winding down and Chauncey Billups was in his element.

    "Mr. Big Shot" had just buried his fifth straight shot and fourth three-pointer of the fourth quarter to cut the Nets' lead to one with 1:44 left.

    "With them, crunch time is the best time," Vince Carter said of the Pistons.

    Except last night, the Nets gave the Pistons a taste of their own formula for success.

    Jason Collins drew a huge charge before Jason Kidd answered Billups with a three-point dagger with 48.3 seconds that lifted the Nets to an inspired 91-84 victory at the Meadowlands.

    ~ New York Times ~

    Not settling for less, than Nets beat the best
    By John Eligon

    The rivalry between the Nets and the Pistons — fueled by fierce playoff battles — subsided the past season and a half. Detroit has dominated the N.B.A. this season, so there was not much of a showdown to speak of heading into Tuesday's game.

    But that intense battle was renewed at Continental Arena, and the Nets showed that, though they may not be as consistent as the Pistons, they have the tools to compete with them.

    Thanks to a late 3-pointer and two free throws from Jason Kidd, the Nets ended a four-game losing streak, 91-84.

    The loss was only the Pistons' sixth in 43 games this season, snapping their 11-game winning streak. Detroit (37-6) still has the best record in the league. The Nets improved to 23-20.

    ~ New York Post ~

    Surging Pistons are Flip side of Knicks
    By Jay Greenberg

    THE PISTONS, who were uptahere with Larry Brown, nevertheless thank him. Just as the Knicks may do some day, when Eddy Curry becomes Shaq, Isiah Thomas admits to a single mistake and pigs fly.

    Of course, by then Brown will be long gone, as he was from seven NBA teams that each benefited from his presence, though they still felt he shouldn't let the door hit him on the way out.

    Personnel losses are measured by replacements — in Detroit's case, the capable Flip Saunders.


    ~ The Washington Times ~

    Everything pointing to two-man MVP race
    By Tom Knott

    The NBA's MVP race is the two-person undertaking of Steve Nash and Chauncey Billups.

    The others -- Elton Brand, Kobe Bryant and Dirk Nowitzki -- are distant candidates at the midway point in the season.

    Nash has provided a stirring encore to his tirelessly debated MVP acquisition last season. It comes in the absence of Amare Stoudemire, the team's No. 2 player who has yet to score a point or snare a rebound this season. His injury was expected to cripple the Suns, Nash or not.

    If not Nash, then Billups

    Now Billups is the essential element on a team that is flirting with the 70-win mark.

    His assist/turnover ratio is third in the NBA. He is ranked in the top 20 of 15 statistical categories.

    At age 29 -- late by NBA standards -- Billups has emerged as a genuine star who relishes taking the big shot.

    The choice between the two is apt to require a coin flip.​
     
  2. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    ~~NBATV~~

    Maurice Evans interview *VIDEO*


    ~~Detroit BadBoys~~

    What team do you hate the most?
    by Matt Watson

    Let me tell you a secret: even though the Pistons have lost to them twice this year, I actually really like the Jazz. I'm still a Memo Okur fan, and watching Andrei Kirilenko is just plain fun. Plus, I love Jerry Sloan's old school approach, and his teams always play hard.

    And while most fans will say the Pacers are our biggest rival, I can't muster up the energy to care about them now that Ron Artest is gone. I'll even go so far as to say that I like Jermaine O'Neal, and I admit that if you really look at the tape, he was probably justified for KO'ing that fan on the court last year.

    But the Nets? Holy crap do those guys annoy me. [more...]


    Pistons drop the clutch in New Jersey
    by Matt Watson

    Now, I freely admit that I was able to watch all of (the last) five minutes of this game, but after one quick glance at the box score I can't help but think I know what went wrong: Rasheed Wallace went 1-of-11 from beyond the three-point line. 1-of-11! And he only attempted 14 total shots! The shot chart is just depressing, especially considering he didn't attempt a single, boring, old two-pointer after halftime.

    Let me be clear, I absolutely love Rasheed's inside-outside game — it makes him one of the most indefensible big men in the game. But it's simply inexcusable to completely forget to, you know, play the post. When he did play down low, he made two of three shots. [more...]
     
  3. Abe Froemen

    Abe Froemen First Round Draft Pick

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  4. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    Carlos Delfino Interview (en Espanol).

    **LINK**

    My rough translation follows... (caveat, I am lousy at Spanish, so it's google with some fixes I could apply afterwords).

     
  5. Abe Froemen

    Abe Froemen First Round Draft Pick

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  6. Zoso

    Zoso First Round Draft Pick

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    February 2nd -

    ~ Detroit News ~

    Pistons 90, T'Wolves 74
    Pistons tattoo Timberwolves
    Hamilton scores 21, Wallace controls rebounds in second half and Detroit bounces back from loss.
    By Chris McCosky

    Pretty good night all the way around for the Pistons.

    Earlier in the evening, Chauncey Billups was named Eastern Conference Player of the Month (the first Piston so awarded since Grant Hill in January of 1997) and Flip Saunders became the first NBA coach to be named Coach of the Month three straight months.

    Then, with large contingents of Steelers and Seahawks players sitting courtside, the Pistons ran the Minnesota Timberwolves out of The Palace, spanking them, 90-74, before the 108th straight sellout crowd, which gave standing ovations first to Jerome Bettis, then to Ben Wallace, whose energy exasperated the Timberwolves and enlivened his teammates and the crowd.

    NBA: Roundup
    Warriors exec fired over e-mail
    PR manager apologizes for sending a racially insensitive message to team's media outlets.
    Detroit news wire services

    The public relations manager for the Golden State Warriors was fired Wednesday for inadvertently sending out a racially insensitive e-mail titled "Ghetto Prom" to the team's entire media distribution list.

    Eric Govan, the No. 3 person on the Warriors' media relations staff, sent the e-mail featuring 17 photos, many depicting scantily clad African-Americans in formal attire and commentary on the outfits.

    The e-mail went to dozens of newspaper reporters, columnists and sports editors, as well as television and radio stations.

    "I can assure you that the contents of this e-mail -- or any unsaid presumptions -- do not represent the values and beliefs of the Golden State Warriors organization," team president Robert Rowell said in a statement.

    ~ Detroit Free Press ~

    Finally, NBA recognizes top Pistons
    By Krista Latham


    A few weeks ago, the Pistons felt slighted that despite their league-best start, no player had been singled out for any NBA honors.

    Then shooting guard Richard Hamilton was named Eastern Conference player of the week.

    Now point guard Chauncey Billups has been named Eastern Conference Player of the month for January.

    "That's a great, great honor," Billups said. "I've never got that before. I've been player of the week, but player of the month is a lot tougher to get because you have to do it over the course of four straight weeks."

    Add another Eastern Conference coach of the month award for Flip Saunders -- he has swept the first three months, a franchise first -- and it's clear the old we-don't-get-no-respect line isn't going to fly far this season.

    Pistons bounce back
    after rare loss, Detroit dominates
    By Krista Latham

    Save the losing streak for later.

    Sure, it'll come. Just not yet.

    The Minnesota Timberwolves had the perfect opportunity Wednesday night to heal their frustrations from a 24-point loss to the Pistons last week. The Pistons had traveled home from New Jersey late Tuesday night and were in a rare position -- coming off just their sixth loss of the season.

    Lot of good that did. The Pistons (38-6) attacked in the second quarter and won, 90-74, as half of the NFL -- or so it seemed, anyway -- watched from the pricey seats on the Palace floor.

    ~ Booth Newspapers ~

    Ben Wallace's rebounding sets tone for Pistons win
    By A. Sherrod Blakely

    The Detroit Pistons were looking to rebound from a rare loss Wednesday night, so who better to set the tone than their best rebounder, Ben Wallace.

    He out-hustled the Minnesota Timberwolves on the boards to set the tone for the Pistons' 90-74 win against the Minnesota Timberwolves.

    "He was huge," said Pistons forward Tayshaun Prince, who had 20 points. "Rebounding, blocking, steals . . . he does it all defensively and obviously, getting offensive rebounds. He did some great things for us tonight."

    ~ The Oakland Press ~

    Back to business
    Pistons respond from a rare loss with easy win over Timberwolves
    By Bill Roose

    Coming off one of their worst shooting performances of the year, which helped end the NBA's season-high 11 game winning streak, the Pistons returned home Wednesday and begin a new streak.

    The Pistons were unstoppable, turning huge offensive surges into an impressive 90-74 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves at The Palace.

    Richard Hamilton scored a game-high 21 points, Tayshaun Prince added 20 points and six assists, and Ben Wallace had 17 rebounds, four steals and three blocks as the Pistons avoided losing back-to-back games for the first time this season.

    ~ St. Paul Pioneer press ~

    An XL loss to a super team
    this to show their stuff to Steelers, Seahawks
    By Rick Alonzo

    Trade or no trade, the Timberwolves still can't compete with the NBA's best team.

    Not yet, anyway.

    It's unrealistic to expect a team playing its fourth game after a major trade to be able to defeat a team like the Detroit Pistons, who put on a show during a 90-74 blowout Wednesday night in front of a sellout crowd at The Palace of Auburn Hills that included several Pittsburgh Steelers and Seattle Seahawks.

    The Wolves never recovered from a 20-2 Pistons run in the second quarter. The game wasn't as close as the final score.

    "Avalanche," Wolves coach Dwane Casey said. "Offensively, our execution was bad. That's one problem you have against a team defense like that. They turned up the juice, and we couldn't execute."

    The score was 27-27 when the Pistons seemed to sense they had an audience that could be shown why they carry an NBA-best 38-6 record.

    ~ USA Today ~

    Pistons, Kobe lead NBA way at season's midpoint
    By John Denton

    The most significant number in the NBA so far this season? No, not Kobe Bryant's 81 points or even that wacky 93 that Ron Artest chose for his new duds in Sacramento.

    It's 70 — as in how many wins the Detroit Pistons are on pace to achieve this season. They have been so dominant, wiping out everything in their path, even the reigning champion San Antonio Spurs — victims of 85-70 and 83-68 drubbings — have been no match.

    A record of 35-5 carries great weight in Detroit because that's the stunning mark the 1984 Tigers put up on their way to the 1984 World Series. But the Pistons easily surpassed that mark in the midst of a league-best 11-game winning streak. Next in their sights could be the Chicago Bulls' 72-10 mark of 1995-96.

    ~ MSNBC.com ~

    Is 70 to save? Pistons have shot at wins record
    But catching 1995-96 Bulls will be difficult for Saunders, Detroit
    By Bob Harkins

    Second-Half Look Ahead

    72 or bust for the Pistons?
    In case you hadn’t noticed, the Detroit Pistons don’t seem to be missing Larry Brown very much.

    When the well-traveled coach wheeled and dealed his way out of Detroit in favor of his hometown Knicks, Detroit simply turned to Flip Saunders, who had been shown the door in Minnesota after 10 solid-but-unspectacular seasons.

    Saunders was smart enough to realize that a veteran Pistons team that had made consecutive trips to the NBA Finals didn’t need a whole lot of changes. A mere tweak here and there changed the focus a little bit away from Brown’s defensive minded philosophy.​
     
  7. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    ~~Detroit Bad Boys~~

    Pistons show Timberwolves who’s the alpha male

    by Matt Watson

    The resilient Pistons bounced back from a tough loss in Jersey on Tuesday to blow out the Timberwolves at the Palace on Wednesday. It wasn't the prettiest game in the world — Minnesota was actually leading by one after the first quarter — but Detroit clamped down with their trademark defense to hold the T-Wolves to just 15 points in each of the next two quarters.

    It's not often that a guy who failed to score a single point can be singled out as a game-changer, but Ben Wallace was phenomenal with 17 rebounds (including eight offensive boards), four steals and three blocks. [click for more...]
     
  8. Zoso

    Zoso First Round Draft Pick

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    ~ Detroit News ~


    Dumars wrote his own rules to build an elite franchise
    By Chris McCosky

    There must be days when Pistons president Joe Dumars looks out from his suite at The Palace, in the din of yet another sellout crowd, his basketball team the absolute scourge of the NBA on the court and the toast of it off the court, and thinks, "No way this can be happening."

    Two years ago, the Pistons were champions. Last year, they fell one game short. Today, they are 38-6 and marching steadfastly toward a third straight NBA Finals appearance.

    The Pistons are a model of efficiency, the league standard in terms of team building, salary-cap management, marketing and community service.

    Yao is tops in voting by fans
    Rocket edges Bryant, and Shaquille O'Neal makes it to his 13th straight All-Star game.
    Detroit News wire services

    Yao Ming outpolled Kobe Bryant as the top vote-getter in fan balloting for the 55th NBA All-Star game, and Shaquille O'Neal became the fifth player in league history to earn 13 consecutive selections for the game.

    Yao and Tracy McGrady give the host Houston Rockets two starters in the Feb. 20 game, it was announced Thursday. They were joined on the Western Conference squad by Bryant, San Antonio's Tim Duncan and reigning MVP Steve Nash of Phoenix -- who will be a first-time All-Star starter.

    Cleveland's LeBron James was the top Eastern Conference vote getter, beating O'Neal by 15,155 votes. It's the second straight All-Star trip for James, who says he's still drawing motivation from being snubbed during his rookie season.

    Philadelphia's Allen Iverson, Indiana's Jermaine O'Neal and first-time All-Star starter Dwyane Wade of Miami rounded out the East's starting five.


    ~ Detroit Free Press ~


    By Krista Latham

    The votes are in. The Pistons are not.

    Despite the team's league-best 38-6 record, no Piston was voted to start for the Eastern Conference for the Feb. 19 NBA All-Star Game.

    The closest to make it were Ben Wallace and Rasheed Wallace, who each finished one place back from an assured trip to Houston.

    Results of the final fan voting were announced Thursday night.

    Long-range bombs add to Arsenal
    By Krista Latham

    Last season, this situation would have been hard to fathom.

    The down-and-dirty Pistons, relying too much on three-pointers?

    File it in the strange-but-true category. In some games this season, outside shooting has become something of a crutch.

    It's a touchy subject. On one hand, three-point shooting has saved or won games for the Pistons. Surprisingly, they are the best three-point-shooting team in the NBA, hitting 40.1%.

    Even in Tuesday night's loss at New Jersey, when 8-for-27 three-point shooting seemed to doom the Pistons, it also kept them in the game.


    ~ Booth Newspapers ~


    By A. Sherrod Blakely

    There was a time when the Detroit Pistons didn't care much about how they won, or by how many points they won on the road.

    That changed two years ago in Philadelphia when president of basketball operation Joe Dumars criticized his players following a lackluster win against the 76ers.

    The Pistons allowed a struggling Philadelphia team to keep that game close, the kind of thing championship-caliber teams don't allow to happen.

    The message hit a home as the Pistons won seven of the next eight road games -- all by at least 12 points -- en route to the NBA championship.


    ~ Covers.com ~


    A/P

    The Detroit Pistons showed they can respond to a tough loss. The Philadelphia 76ers might have a hard time doing the same without Allen Iverson when they take on the league`s best team.

    Detroit had won 11 in a row before losing 91-84 at New Jersey on Tuesday, coming up two victories shy of the longest win streak in team history.

    It was just the sixth loss of the season for the Pistons. Every other team in the league has at least 10.

    One night after shooting a near season-low 36.6 percent from the field against the Nets, the Pistons bounced back to shoot 45.5 percent and easily beat Minnesota 90-74 on Wednesday. Richard Hamilton scored 21 points and Tayshaun Prince added 20 as Pistons coach Flip Saunders beat his former team for the second time in nine days.

    Detroit has not lost consecutive regular-season games since a three-game skid from March 22-25.


    ~ Toronto Star ~


    They don't have a Michael or a Scottie, but the Pistons can match the 1995-96 Bulls' 72-win season, Doug Smith says

    There's really not much drama to the NBA's Eastern Conference these days, unless you're trying to figure out what sub-.500 team might scrape into eighth place or whether the league will do the right thing and revoke the New York franchise.

    But there is one compelling story that's going to play out in the final three months of the season: Can the Detroit Pistons win 72 regular season games and match the all-time single-season record of the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls?

    At 38-6, and despite a hiccup in New Jersey this week where they had an 11-game win streak snapped, the methodical Pistons are on track to equal that mark. And since they should have homecourt advantage throughout the playoffs wrapped up by about March break, chasing that record should keep Detroit interested through the final month of the regular season.


    ~ Indianapolis Star ~


    Who is best: East? West? Detroit? Top team slighted, may be able to take them both
    By Mark Montieth

    Just what the rest of the NBA needed. Another reason for Detroit to feel slighted.

    The Pistons, like the city they represent, carry a chip on their shoulder as it is. Now that none of their players has been selected by fans to start in the Feb. 19 NBA All-Star Game, they'll only have more reason to claim that disrespected feeling teams love so much.

    Chauncey Billups. Richard Hamilton. Tayshaun Prince. Rasheed Wallace. Ben Wallace. Any one of them ranks as a legitimate All-Star selection.

    Prince would be a bit of a stretch, but nobody who saw him sprint downcourt to block what appeared to be a gimme Reggie Miller layup in Game 2 of the 2004 Eastern Conference semifinals would argue much.

    ~ The Sporting News ~


    Save for a couple of speed traps, the road to The Finals appears smooth for the Spurs and Pistons.
    By Sean Deveney
     
  9. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    ~~Detroit Bad Boys~~

    Is Joe Dumars fit to run the Pistons?
    by Ian Cameron

    At the conclusion of the 2001 season, where the Pistons finished 30-52 with an overmatched roster full of expiring contracts (Billy Owens, Dana Barros, Joe Smith, Corliss Williamson, et al), frustration was mounting. As a recap of the season, McCosky published an article that must still keep him up nights given the Pistons subsequent run of success. This story about Joe was nothing like those mentioned above. The article actually questioned whether Joe D was capable of running the Pistons. [read more]

    {micro: this is a great read, make sure you check out both of the linked articles by McCoskey}
     
  10. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    ~~Detroit News~~


    Pistons stop shorthanded Sixers
    Without Iverson, 76ers provide no match for Detroit.
    by Dan Gelston / Associated Press

    PHILADELPHIA-- The only frustrating part of the night for Rasheed Wallace was filling all the ticket requests.

    Once the hometown fans had their seats, Wallace and the rest of the Pistons gave them their money's worth.

    Richard Hamilton scored 30 points, Wallace added 20 and the Detroit Pistons held on to beat the feisty, short-handed Philadelphia 76ers, 87-80, Friday night.

    Wallace cooled after a strong first half, but hit a couple of big baskets in the fourth, delighting the Philly fans who came to cheer on the nearby Simon Gratz High graduate.


    Look of Pacers-Pistons rivalry changes without Artest
    by Cliff Brunt / Associated Press

    INDIANAPOLIS-- Indiana vs. Detroit.

    The mere mention of those teams brings visions of flying beer, haymakers and of course, Ron Artest. But now that the league's number one bad boy is out West with the Sacramento Kings, some of the focus will return to basketball as the teams play each other for the first time this season Saturday at Conseco Fieldhouse.

    Two seasons ago, the Pistons knocked off the top-seeded Pacers in the Eastern Conference finals on their way to winning the NBA title. Last season, the Pistons beat the Pacers in the second round of the playoffs to send Reggie Miller into retirement.

    The two franchises have been among the league's best the past eight seasons. In that span, the teams have combined for a championship, three trips to the NBA Finals and seven Eastern Conference finals appearances.


    ~~Detroit Free Press~~


    DETROIT 87, PHILADELPHIA 80: Home wreckers
    Philly's favorite sons Rasheed, Rip combine for 50 points

    by KRISTA LATHAM

    PHILADELPHIA -- Early in Friday night's game against the Allen Iverson-less 76ers, the game plan seemed obvious -- find the open Piston playing in front of his family and friends and hometown, get him the ball, and watch the lead grow.

    Again and again in the first quarter, Philadelphia native Rasheed Wallace and Richard Hamilton, who hails from nearby Coatesville, found themselves catching a pass from Chauncey Billups and staring at open shots.


    Flip says 3, maybe more are All-Stars
    by KRISTA LATHAM

    PHILADELPHIA -- None of the five players who brought team basketball back in vogue won enough fan love to start on the Eastern Conference All-Star team.

    But all's not lost. Now it's the coaches' turn to select reserves, and Pistons coach Flip Saunders wonders if they might select all five of his stars -- point guard Chauncey Billups, shooting guard Richard Hamilton, small forward Tayshaun Prince, power forward Rasheed Wallace and center Ben Wallace -- for the Feb. 19 game in Houston.


    ~~Booth Newspapers~~


    Pistons 87, 76ers 80
    by A. Sherrod Blakely

    PHILADELPHIA - The Philadelphia 76ers are a different team without Allen Iverson - and it's definitely not for the better.

    That didn't stop them from giving the Detroit Pistons all they could handle, as the Pistons held on for an 87-80 victory over the undermanned Sixers.

    Detroit (39-6) was in control most of the game, but that didn't stop the Sixers from making it interesting in the fourth quarter.


    Looks like Rasheed will join teammates in All-Star Game
    by A. Sherrod Blakely

    PHILADELPHIA -- Rasheed Wallace isn't a big fan of individual accolades.

    However, he has come to accept that he will probably be among the All-Star Game reserves selected by the Eastern Conference coaches next Thursday. If not, then he's likely to be chosen by NBA commissioner David Stern as a replacement for Indiana's Jermaine O'Neal, who has a groin injury and will not play in the Feb. 19 game in Houston.


    ~~Hoopsworld~~

    Motown Soundtrack: Goin’ back to Indiana
    by Adriano Albuquerque

    Now, however, what’s interesting about the game is to see how much both teams have changed since that fateful November 19th 2004 game, going back, as I said in a previous column, to that singular moment when Ben Wallace shoved Ron Artest away, shoving with him the entire Indiana Pacers team into oblivion. It’s interesting to see how that’s symbolic of everything that went on since then.


    ~~Philladelphia Daily News~~

    In the end, Pistons prevailed, of course
    by PHIL JASNER

    JOHN SALMONS remembered glancing over at the Detroit Pistons in a timeout huddle midway through the fourth quarter. He didn't like what he saw, but he understood it. He definitely respected it. He might even have felt a measure of envy.

    "I was getting upset," the 76ers guard said after last night's 87-80 loss to the 39-6 Pistons, generally regarded as the NBA's best team. "They'd get in the huddle, laughing and joking. They knew they were going to come out with the win. It was like, been there, done that. They just know how to win games. They're not worried."

    ~~Philadelphia Inquirer~~

    A misfire against Pistons
    by Joe Juliano

    The 76ers did everything they could last night to defeat the Detroit Pistons. They shot a better percentage. They grabbed more rebounds. They kept the Wachovia Center crowd of 20,010 involved for most of the game.

    But the Pistons never got flustered and played with the confidence that belongs to a team that owns the NBA's best record. Using that self-assurance and getting 30 points from Coatesville's Richard Hamilton, Detroit came up with an 87-80 victory over the Sixers to improve to 39-6.


    Bob Ford | When you're losing, the news isn't always good
    by Bob Ford

    Allen Iverson says there is nothing but bad news in the newspaper. From the front page to the local page to the sports section.

    He didn't mention "Hints from Heloise," but I admit I don't know if she continues dishing those out. And it doesn't seem as if Sluggo and Nancy can still brighten a day, either.

    "The whole paper is like a book, 'Tales of the Dark Side,' or something," Iverson said earlier this week.
     
  11. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    ~~ The Indianapolis Star ~~​


    Assembly required
    Pistons build model team with spare parts, castoffs
    By Mark Montieth

    The path the Detroit Pistons have taken to NBA supremacy might be depressing for Indiana Pacers fans, who not so long ago viewed their team as an equal force.​

    But it offers hope, too.

    Through insight and fate, Pistons president Joe Dumars has assembled a team that is chasing history. The 39-6 record they take into tonight's game at Conseco Fieldhouse puts them in the same conversation with the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls team that finished an all-time best 72-10.

    Am I the only person a little uncomfortable with an Indy writer mentioning that the Pistons could be a blueprint for the Pacers? Welcome to Bizzaro world. - micro

    ~~The Oakland Press~~

    Grind it out
    Pistons don't have usual jump, barely put away Iverson-less Sixers
    by DANA GAURUDER

    PHILADELPHIA - The All-Star break is just two weeks away. From the looks of it, that breather can't come soon enough for the Pistons.

    Their energy and intensity levels have dipped noticeably in their last two road games. A matchup against the Philadelphia Sixers without Allen Iverson smelled of a blowout but instead reeked of heavy perspiration. The Pistons won for the 13th time in 14 games, but their 87-80 victory at the Wachovia Center was much too close for comfort.
     
  12. LanierFan

    LanierFan Bench Warmer

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    All the praise is getting me nervous, because it can change so fast. I remember when the Pistons were modeling themselves after the Orlando Magic - who promptly turned their back on the Bo Outlaw model of scrappy underachievers and spiralled downward into Steve Francis hell.
     
  13. LanierFan

    LanierFan Bench Warmer

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    ~ The Detroit News ~​

    It seemed the tank might have been running low when Chauncey Billups yawned during pregame introductions. When the Pacers got 14 offensive rebounds in the first quarter, you knew the teams were playing with differing levels of intensity.

    Carlisle says don't cry for me
    .... "There will always be challenges with this," he said. "And right now, our challenge is to get healthy. We feel like, if we can get our whole team together, we can make a run and we have to do it with the guys that are available.
    ....​
    Darko Milicic met the team in Indianapolis Saturday. He missed Friday because of a flu-like virus that's running through the team. The latest to be afflicted, media relations man Kevin Grigg.

    Carlos Arroyo missed the team flight to Philadelphia. He had to fly commercial and was expected to be fined by the team. He is believed to be the first Piston to draw a disciplinary fine since Richard Hamilton, who missed a flight during the 2004 playoffs.


    ~ The Indianapolis Star ~

    Before all the injuries, before the trade and before Detroit opened the season with a dead sprint toward history, this was a game that loomed like a heavyweight bout. Instead, it was merely an opportunity for the Indiana Pacers to display the sort of performance they once assumed would be the norm.


    ~ The Associated Press/Foxsports.com ~

    Just by playing, Stephen Jackson showed the Pacers the toughness they needed to beat Detroit. Jackson shook off a recent injury that sent him to the hospital to score 20 points and grab seven rebounds, and Indiana upset the rival Pistons 93-85 Saturday night.


    ~ MLive.com ~

    INDIANAPOLIS -- With the Detroit Pistons threatening to challenge the record for most regular-season wins in NBA history, and the Indiana Pacers fighting just to make the playoffs, Saturday night's matchup didn't quite have the intrigue the series has the past couple of seasons. That didn't matter, as the Pacers got one of their biggest wins of the season in defeating the Pistons a 93-85.



    Prince will withdraw from Olympic team consideration
    .... "Who knows if we (the Pistons) go all the way (through the playoff) to June, and a couple of weeks after we finish, this starts up," Prince said. "If you think about playing for a gold medal, of course, you'll be like, `yeah, I'm for that.' You want to represent your country and USA basketball. But, we're trying to win a title every year."
     
  14. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    ~~The Oakland Press~~

    Loss for the weary
    Despite absence of Jermaine O'Neal, Pacers upset Pistons
    by DANA GAURUDER

    INDIANAPOLIS - Better to have a few fresh bodies than a bunch of weary ones.

    It's not as snappy a phrase as Fernando's "Better to look good than to feel good," but it aptly described the Pistons' plight Saturday night. They were running on empty playing for the fourth time in fi ve nights in four different cities. Those dead legs gave the depleted Indiana Pacers the opening they needed to sneak past their most heated rival.


    Pistons make Carlisle see stars
    by DANA GAURUDER

    With Billups playing at that level, Carlisle is not surprised by the Pistons' league-leading record. He also believes they are much deeper than many people suspect.

    "They don't have a weakness," he said. "One of the weaknesses they don't have is the fact they don't rely completely on one or two players to carry their team. They really have great balance. They have a bench that fits their roster situation very well. When you've got Dale Davis sitting over there, who has played 46 minutes all year, if he was here, he'd have played that in our last game and a half."
     
  15. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    ~~ Detroit Bad Boys ~~

    No mo Arroyo?
    by Ian Cameron

    Mitch Lawrence reports in today's New York Daily News that the Pistons may be shopping for a new backup point guard.


    “Winners should be rewarded. Losers should be cast aside.”
    by Ian Cameron

    If current Rockets coach Jeff Van Gundy were back with the Knicks–in the Eastern Conference–the Piston starters' chances of being named reserves for the East's All-Star squad would probably be improved by a vote.


    No good excuses for this one: Pacers top Pistons
    by Ian Cameron

    Yes, they were playing their second game of a road back-to-back, but don't accept that as a valid excuse. The Pistons–with their full compliment of players–should always be able to beat a Pacers team without the services of Jermaine O'Neal, Austin Croshere, and Jamal Tinsley, regardless of how tired their legs may be. Instead, despite the best efforts of Rip and Sheed, the Pistons slept their way to a 93-85 loss to the Pacers last night.
     
  16. Zoso

    Zoso First Round Draft Pick

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    February 6th -

    ~ Detroit News ~

    Bumps, bruises, hamper Billups
    Pistons might bring back hunters sooner to spell guard, who has thigh and hand injuries.
    By Chris McCosky


    If they haven't already done so, Pistons president Joe Dumars and coach Flip Saunders will discuss the possibility of speeding up Lindsey Hunter's return to active duty.

    The hope was to have Hunter ready after the All-Star break, but the Pistons might not be able to wait that long.

    Chauncey Billups is beat up right now. He is taking daily treatment on a bruised left thigh, which he injured against the Lakers on Jan. 29. In Saturday night's loss at Indiana, Billups suffered some minor tissue damage to his right hand.

    ~ Detroit Free Press ~

    Practice can help team regain legs
    By Krista Latham

    Today the Pistons will return to a place they've missed in the past few weeks -- the practice facility.

    It has been more than a week since the Pistons held an official team practice. The last one was Jan. 28, the day before the team embarked on a week that included five games in seven days in four cities.

    In the past two weeks, Detroit had three practices.

    "Man, we've been playing a lot of games," said shooting guard Richard Hamilton, the sole Piston who looked rested in Saturday's 93-85 loss to the Pacers in Indianapolis.

    As durable and consistent as the NBA-leading Pistons (39-7) have been, they couldn't withstand that schedule and keep up their winning clip. Detroit lost twice in that five-game span, including Tuesday night in New Jersey.

    ~ Booth Newspapers ~

    Inside the Pistons
    By A. Sherrod Blakely

    A look at the Pistons heading into this week:

    Who's hot: In four games last week, Richard Hamilton averaged 25.3 points, six rebounds and five assists per game while shooting 46 percent from the field.

    Who's not: Reserve Maurice Evans missed 10 of 13 shots from the field in the four games.

    Play of the week: In a 90-74 win against Minnesota last Wednesday, Ben Wallace grabbed rebounds off three consecutive Detroit missed shots before passing to Hamilton, who made a 3-pointer

    ~ New York Times ~

    Pistons' Milicic Undergoing Long Process Of Maturing
    By Liz Robbins

    As the Detroit Pistons rush to dispense with the regular season and return to the finals for the third consecutive season, one of their players, Darko Milicic, has been virtually invisible.

    Milicic, the No. 2 pick in the 2003 draft, was chosen ahead of players like Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade. He entered the weekend averaging 1.6 points and 1.2 rebounds in 5.8 minutes and has not been able to break into the Pistons' well-oiled rotation.

    Detroit holds the option for his fourth season, and Joe Dumars, the team president, has become more active in trade discussions.

    But it is hard to ascertain Milicic's value because he rarely plays. Milicic, a 7-footer and only 20, is aware of a trade possibility, but Dumars has also turned down offers to develop his talent.

    ~ New York Daily News ~

    Pistons talking point
    By Mitch Lawrence

    Even after rolling off 37 wins in their first 42 games, the fourth-best start in league history, the Pistons still feel they have a weakness.

    They've had internal discussions about getting a veteran backup point guard to spell Chauncey Billups for 10-12 minutes per night. They don't feel their current backup, Carlos Arroyo, gets everybody involved enough.

    ~ Sacramento Bee ~

    As a team, Pistons just can't lose
    By Martin McNeal

    There are observers who believe it was a travesty that none of the Detroit Pistons was voted by the fans to an Eastern Conference All-Star Game berth.

    However, the team with the NBA's best record actually received the ultimate endorsement of its collective method of success when the fans bypassed its best players for others with gaudier individual statistics.

    And there is a thought process first publicly mentioned by Boston coach Doc Rivers that the entire starting five should be voted onto the All-Star squad.

    Unquestionably this season, the Pistons have been the model for team play, led by point guard Chauncey Billups, who has been mentioned as a serious Most Valuable Player candidate. Or is it center Ben Wallace, who consistently makes his mark as perhaps the NBA's most effective and impact team defender?

    ~ PhillyBurbs.com ~

    Stability key for Pistons
    By Dom Cosentino

    New season, new coach, no problem for the Detroit Pistons.

    The Pistons came to the Wachovia Center on Friday night to play the 76ers having won 13 of 14 games, and their 39-6 record has them on pace to challenge the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls for the best record in NBA history at 72-10.

    The season began in November, but Pistons forward Ben Wallace suggested it actually might have begun for Detroit back in June, back when they lost to the San Antonio Spurs in Game 7 of the NBA Finals.

    "Game 7 was all the motivation we needed," said Wallace before Friday's game. "We felt like if we would have had Game 7 in our building, maybe the outcome would have been a little bit different. That's what we're playing for right now - regardless of who's coaching."​
     
  17. Zoso

    Zoso First Round Draft Pick

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    ~ MLive.com~

    Here's ASB's latest thoughts from his blog.


    ~ Fox sports.com ~


    Fox sports.com's Mike Kahn hands out midseason awards in his article today.​


    ~ SI.com ~


    SI.com's Marty Burns looks into the mysterious side of Chris Anderson's dismissal from the NBA.​

    ~ MSNBC.com ~

    Pistons might be greatest 'team' ever
    No band of five has ever played as unselfishly as Saunders' squad
    By Mike Celizic

    The Super Bowl is gone, but Detroit’s super team is right where it has been for what’s going on three years now — at the Palace in Auburn Hills, home of the Pistons.

    This town is crazy about them, as it has been for years and as it should be. So far in the 2005-2006 season, there’s no better team in the NBA. But you get the feeling there’s a definite national respect lag for what this remarkable outfit has been doing, which is merely threatening to match the 72-10 regular-season record set by the 1995-1996 Chicago Jordans.

    Take the All Star voting. Detroit is the best team in the league and has one of the best shooters, guard Richard Hamilton, one of the best defensive centers, Ben Wallace, and a point guard, Chauncey Billups, who’s one of the best floor leaders in the game. Yet the fans didn’t vote one Piston to the starting Eastern Conference All Star Team...
     
  18. LanierFan

    LanierFan Bench Warmer

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    ~ The New York Times ~

    Pistons' Milicic Undergoing Long Process Of Maturing
    As the Detroit Pistons rush to dispense with the regular season and return to the finals for the third consecutive season, one of their players, Darko Milicic, has been virtually invisible.

    Milicic, the No. 2 pick in the 2003 draft, was chosen ahead of players like Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade. He entered the weekend averaging 1.6 points and 1.2 rebounds in 5.8 minutes and has not been able to break into the Pistons' well-oiled rotation.

    Detroit holds the option for his fourth season, and Joe Dumars, the team president, has become more active in trade discussions.

    But it is hard to ascertain Milicic's value because he rarely plays. With the team 39-6 entering last night's game at Indiana, the Pistons are in no hurry to make a deal. They made their blockbuster deadline trade for Rasheed Wallace two years ago; other than gaining depth, they need little but salary relief or draft picks.

    Milicic, a 7-footer and only 20, is aware of a trade possibility, but Dumars has also turned down offers to develop his talent.

    Milicic's agent, Marc Cornstein, explained his client's approach.

    "On one hand, he has tremendous loyalty for Joe, for John Hammond, for the management of Detroit," Cornstein said Friday, referring to Hammond, the Pistons' vice president for basketball operations. "They've really been in his corner.

    "That being said, it's two and a half years, and like any player, he'd like to play. He's happy as long as it's a situation where he's given the opportunity to play, and I can't see why a team acquiring him would not want to give him that immediately."
     
  19. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    ~~ Chicago Tribune ~~

    Loving themselves, not this game
    Today's All-Stars a far cry from days of MJ, Bird, Magic
    by Sam Smith

    The NBA All-Star starters were named last week, and the full teams will be announced Thursday. There's not much any league can do with all-star games, though at one time the NBA's was by far the best, the most competitive and most fun.

    But the announcement of the starters and the skills contests pointed out a big part of the league's problem: The NBA cares, but its players often don't.

    and this little nugget (sorry fans, it's all the Darko mention you will find in this GREAT piece on today's players lack of caring for the league)

     
  20. Zoso

    Zoso First Round Draft Pick

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    February 7th -

    ~ Detroit News ~

    Pistons Rap
    Perfect timing
    Hunter will bring energy for hectic schedule stretch
    By Chris McCosky

    Lindsey Hunter could not have picked a better time to return to active duty.

    Hunter, out all season after left ankle surgery, traveled with Detroit to Atlanta and is expected to make his debut tonight -- smack-dab in the middle of a stretch in which the Pistons are play 10 games in 10 venues over 17 days leading into the All-Star break.

    "He's a big ball of energy," Ben Wallace said. "I am going to be happy to see him out there. Not only to help the team, but for him.

    "I know it had to be eating him up sitting on the side and watching. It's great for him, and it's great for us."

    Burning Questions
    Prince mulls committing to U.S team
    By Chris McCosky

    Burning questions as the U.S. attempts to restore its tarnished international glory:

    Q. Has Tayshaun Prince removed his name from consideration for the U.S. national team?

    A. No, he hasn't, and he was quite surprised to learn it was reported he had.
    "I ain't said nothing about it," Prince said. "It's still an option."
    Prince is weighing the three-year commitment against the strain of playing 100-plus game seasons year after year.

    Sonics owner wants action
    Schultz to state: Update KeyArena, or he could move
    By Chris McCosky

    We may not have the "Seattle" SuperSonics to kick around a whole lot longer.

    Owner Howard Schultz has issued an ultimatum to the Washington state legislature -- help us bring KeyArena into the modern era, or we're out.

    "We are in a situation where we believe that if March 9 comes and goes, and we do not get the type of support that we deserve, the type of respect that we are asking for we are going to have to seek other alternatives," Schultz said.

    "And it might mean that the Sonics will either have to move or be sold."

    Bottom of the second: Around the sports world

    Alley oop to former Piston John Salley

    Joanne C. Gerstner's Top 5: Aces at the line

    Detroit News NBA Power Poll

    Pistons: Looking ahead

    Slam dunks

    ~ Detroit Free Press ~

    Hunter, Davis might burn minutes
    By Chris Silva

    Chasing history could come with a hefty price for the Pistons: fatigue.

    That's why the 70-victory talk might be off the mark. What the Pistons are chasing is home-court advantage throughout the playoffs -- no matter how many victories it takes.

    Seventy victories would be quite a feat. The NBA record is 72, by the 1995-96 Bulls. But the Pistons would have to win 31 of the remaining 36 games to reach 70, and that likely would mean more minutes for the starters.

    And that doesn't seem to fly with coach Flip Saunders. He intends to cut back on some of the starters' minutes, particularly for Chauncey Billups, who has a sore finger and sore thigh. In the past five games, Billups has averaged 37.6 minutes.

    History event to come to Pontiac
    By Gina Damron

    High school students have opportunities this month to learn more about Michigan's civil rights leaders and to win scholarship money.

    As part of Black History Month, the Detroit Pistons and Rock Financial are sponsoring a five-stop tour, called Know Your Local Black History.

    The next stop: Thursday at Pontiac Central High School.

    Former Pistons player Rick Mahorn and the Detroit Shock's Swin Cash are among the scheduled speakers. They'll talk to 1,300 students about civil rights leaders from Michigan and around the country, including Rosa Parks, Malcolm X and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


    ~ Booth Newspapers ~

    Hunter back in nick of time, to spell Billups
    By A. Sherrod Blakely

    The amount of playing time Detroit Pistons point guard Chauncey Billups has logged this season has started to take a toll.

    Fortunately for him, help is on the way in the form of Lindsey Hunter, who is expected to be in uniform tonight for the first time this season.

    Hunter, 35, had arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle before training camp and wasn't expected to return until the middle of January.

    The ankle has been healthy enough so that Hunter could have played sooner than now, but the Pistons chose to let him mend for a couple more weeks.

    ~ The Oakland Press ~

    Pistons welcome Hunter
    By Dana Gauruder

    By the Pistons' standards, two losses in four games qualifies as a cold streak. It's time to wind up the teams energizer bunny.

    After missing the first 46 games of the season, Lindsey Hunter is expected to be in uniform tonight when the Pistons play the Atlanta Hawks. Hunter underwent surgery in October to clean out loose particles in his left ankle and has been rehabilitating the injury the first three months of the regular season. He suffered the injury during the NBA Finals, and it failed to heal during the summer.

    ~ The Gloucester County Times ~

    Pistons content to rule NBA
    A.I., Kobe, LeBron, K.G. and Shaq.


    Today's NBA markets itself around these marquee players who can be recognized by one name or their initials.

    Chauncey, Richard, Tayshaun, Rasheed and Ben?

    Doesn't have the same ring to it, does it?

    But if you're looking for the best basketball, the latter group is the answer.

    In a season where Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant has scored 81 points in a game, Miami Heat coach Stan Van Gundy resigned to make way for Hall of Fame coach Pat Riley to return and volatile superstar Ron Artest was traded to the Kings twice, the amazing accomplishments of the Detroit Pistons have gone virtually unnoticed.

    ~ Black Athlete.net ~

    Remembering Dave Bing
    By Tony McClean

    He was a standout guard in a era that was dominated by three future Hall of Famers. Despite that, Dave Bing carved his own special niche in the NBA, overcame his own obstacles, and would make that same trip to Springfield on his own merits.

    Playing against the likes of Walt Frazier, Oscar Robertson, and Jerry West, Bing was a high-scoring guard who triumphed over injuries and went about his business for 12 seasons in the NBA.

    He then quietly went on to off-court success in the business world as a self-made industrial magnate.

    In nine seasons with the Detroit Pistons, followed by two with the Washington Bullets and one with the Boston Celtics, Bing amassed 18,327 points in 901 gamess (20.3 ppg). His efforts earned him a spot on the NBA 50th Anniversary All-Time Team.

    ~ Philadelphia Daily News ~

    All-Stars obviously not about winning
    By John Smallwood

    The other day, New York Knicks coach Larry Brown said he would put all five starters for Detroit Pistons on the East team.

    I wouldn't go that far, but the Pistons are more likely to be underrepresented than overrepresented on the All-Star team.

    For Detroit, guards Chauncey Billups and Richard Hamilton, center Ben Wallace and forward Rasheed Wallace all deserve All-Star berths, and it wouldn't be hard to include forward Tayshaun Prince.

    But Billups, who is playing like an MVP candidate, and Ben Wallace, who is second in the league in rebounding, are probably the only locks to make the East reserves.​
     
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