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Today's Piston Pieces 8/7/09

Discussion in 'Pistons and NBA' started by G-man, Aug 7, 2009.

  1. G-man

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    Rodney Stuckey's actions have matched his words
    VINCE ELLIS - FREE PRESS

    "The Cleveland Cavaliers were dominating the first-round series and were exposing the Pistons' season-long weaknesses.

    Stuckey said, in the future, he would be more vocal and speak out when things were going wrong.

    If the summer is any indication, he will try to be a man of his word.
    Immediately after first-year coach Michael Curry was fired June 30, Stuckey was the only Piston from last year's team to comment publicly.
    He spoke with several media outlets and appeared on local radio to answer questions -- definitely a sign of leadership.

    And with the team getting younger this off-season with the addition of Ben Gordon, Charlie Villanueva and Chris Wilcox and the subtraction of Rasheed Wallace, Antonio McDyess and Allen Iverson, Stuckey should have room to grow in his leadership skills."

    Rodney Stuckey's actions have matched his words | Freep.com | Detroit Free Press




    Summer Symposium
    Keith Langlois - True Blue Pistons

    "Questions, questions. You’ve got questions. Some of them keep popping up in only slightly varied forms. I’ve boiled them down to a dozen dandies from the summer of 2009-10.

    Q: OK, so why do you say “possibly available?”

    A: Because many of those players listed as due to become free agents in 2010 have the option to terminate their contracts or not. Just as Carlos Boozer surveyed the landscape this summer, when he was thought to be the premier free agent available, and chose not to terminate this deal, many others might do likewise next summer – especially with the cap almost certain to come down again. And even if the economy wasn’t a factor, the rules of the collective bargaining agreement make it more lucrative for free agents to stay with their own teams. Even those free agents who hit the market still have great incentive to sign with their own team. They can offer six-year deals with 10.5 percent annual raises; other teams can offer five-year deals with 8 percent annual raises. Over the life of the contract, that can add up to $25 million or so.

    Q: Why did Joe Dumars hire John Kuester when he said after Michael Curry was fired that the Pistons needed an “experienced” coach at this point in time?

    A: Kuester has been a coach for nearly 30 years. He’s been in the NBA since 1990. He started in Boston, where he forged a relationship with Red Auerbach. He was Dean Smith’s starting point guard at North Carolina, a tutorial in coaching all its own. He spent several seasons under another Smith protégé, Larry Brown. He was a head coach at two Division I college programs. No, he’s never been an NBA head coach. But the breadth of his coaching experience is impressive. And he has a history with the Pistons, too, assisting on Brown’s 2004 NBA title staff, where he struck Dumars as a man capable of running his own team.

    Q: Why should I be excited about the 2009-10 Pistons when Joe Dumars said publicly that they weren’t ready to win a championship this season?

    A: He surely would have said the same thing about the Pistons seven years ago, in the summer of 2002 – the last time he had a summer quite so active. That year, he signed Chauncey Billups as a free agent, drafted Tayshaun Prince and traded his leading scorer, Jerry Stackhouse, to Washington for Rip Hamilton. The Pistons are at a similar crossroads now. They’re really young – the average age of the current roster on opening night will be 25.2 – yet they have several established players. Hamilton and Prince are known commodities. Gordon and Villanueva, 26 and 24, are already among the league’s best scorers at their positions and still have room to grow. Rodney Stuckey, with greater stability around him, should again be on track to emerge as one of the game’s great young point guards. And the three rookies drafted in June – Austin Daye, DaJuan Summers and Jonas Jerebko – all flashed hints of having special abilities in one particular area during NBA Summer League. For fans who like to watch a team grow from the roots up, this should be a great time to come along for the ride. "

    PISTONS: Summer Symposium




    Detroit Pistons: 30 Teams in 30 Days
    Bleacher Report - John F

    "The Detroit Pistons appeared to be headed where many teams have gone before and not come out of for years. Mediocrity looked like it finally overtook the city of Detroit, until finally, an answer arrived.
    Actually, make it two.

    The Pistons came away with two of the biggest prizes this offseason when they managed to pick up free agents Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva.

    Gordon was one of the most talented players off the Chicago Bulls roster and one of the best sixth men in the league. He averaged 21 points and shot 41 percent from behind the three-point line last year while leading his team to the playoffs.

    Villanueva is coming off of the best year of his career, where he averaged 16 points and seven rebounds as a power forward for the Milwaukee Bucks. The hairless wonder is going into his fifth year and seems to be improving by the year. His career blossomed last year when the team lost two of it's starters, and he had to take on the role as a No. 1 or No. 2 player.

    While Detroit did come away with two stars, it also lost some of its hometown heroes.

    Rasheed Wallace, who played his last six years with the team and won a championship, was lost to free agency after a dismal year where he had a career-low field-goal percentage and his lowest points-per-game average since his rookie season. Wallace was the face of the organization for most of the past decade, and the city will miss the emotion and heart he brought to every game.

    The team also lost reliable swingman Antonio McDyess. McDyess had played the last five years in Detroit and was one of the most stable players on the team with one of the most consistant jump shots. He is coming off a season where he missed 20 games and averaged 10 points and 10 rebounds per game.

    Detroit "accomplished" something it had not done in nearly 10 years when it finished with a losing record. The Pistons had recorded over 50 wins since the 2001-02 season and had reached the conference finals every year since the 2002-03 season. But last season, they were downed easily in the playoffs when they put up little contest against the Cleveland Cavaliers."

    Detroit Pistons: 30 Teams in 30 Days | Bleacher Report




    5 Things I Think I Know About the Central Division
    Ben York - Dime

    "1. I think I know that the Central Division will be the most interesting to follow in the NBA.

    How could it not be? With Lebron, Shaq, Rose, Granger, the new-look Pistons, and a handful of exciting rookies to look out for including Brandon Jennings, the Central Division is (finally) going to be entertaining to watch all around. Don’t you agree? You could find multiple reasons to watch every team in this division. Whether it be for star-power on the Cavs, catching a Bulls game to see Rose’s crossover or Del Negro’s miscues, or even the Bucks to check in on Jennings’ progress, each team will be entertaining (to say the least) in 2009-’10.

    4. I think I know that the Pistons off-season won’t make them a better team.

    I’ll preface this by saying that if you’re going to use almost all of your $20 million in cap space, and you’re not going to wait to rebuild, and you don’t wait to see what other options are out there, and you don’t expect (or want) to contend for a championship for a very long time, and you want to masquerade as an “improved” team … then Detroit’s off-season wasn’t all bad. Joe Dumars essentially gave up on any big name free agent signing in 2010 with the additions of Charlie Villanueva and Ben Gordon. Doing so, Charlie and Ben will join Detroit’s squad of an aging Rip Hamilton, an underrated Tayshaun Prince, and Rodney Stuckey as their top-tier players. Really? That’s worth $20 million? Originally, when I heard of this deal, I thought they might use Ben and Charlie as trade bait; but their bloated contracts leave nothing to be desired by other teams. I envision no more than 45-48 wins by the Pistons max for the next several years. Sorry, Detroit fans. You deserve better."

    5 Things I Think I Know About the Central Division | Dime Magazine (www.dimemag.com) : Daily NBA News, NBA Trades, NBA Rumors, Basketball Videos, Sneakers




    What was the biggest move for the 2009 offseason?
    John Nguyen - Hoopsvibe.com

    "During the offseason, things usually shake up to make adjustments to teams. There were notable ones and ones where we just go “meh.” Whatever the case, moves were still made. Some acquisitions look great. Other moves just make you go, “WTF?”

    Detroit: Joe Dumars went out and spent some serious stacks to buy Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva – 2 UCONN products. The total price for their services is roughly around $90 million. Once again, Gordon steps on a squad that has a crowded backcourt. This raises other questions about Dumars’ vision for the Pistons. Is Ben Gordon a Vinnie Johnson clone? $11 million per season for someone like that should be a starter. What will the backcourt look like? A Rodney Stuckey/Gordon duo leaves many complaints because of defense and lack of height. A Stuckey/RIP Hamilton pairing has run its’ course. What to do?

    Charlie Villanueva adds more scoring punch and three-point shooting, but nothing else. The defensive toughness that Detroit once had is all gone. Dumars understands that it is rebuilding time and he’s doing it as fast as he possibly can. Twitter about that, CV31."

    What was the biggest move for the 2009 offseason? - HoopsVibe




    Can Fans Wait Through The Tough Years?
    Bethlehem Shoals - The Baseline - Sporting News

    "I like to hang out. I mean, really hang out. Like, put a lawn chair (recliner, natch) at the top of the stairs, get dead drunk and then call Talk of the Nation just as I go tumbling down one story.

    There's no better time to hang out than the off-season, which is to say, no better time to try and consider the fan's point of view. Due to all sorts of numbers and contract-related stuff that may or may not register with the fan on the street, this has been an especially intricate summer, full of suspense, chess moves and everyone getting ready to freak out over a combination of the economy and that vaunted 2010 free agent class.

    Out of this comes two truly novel demands being made of certain fans: that they wait for a better day just over the horizon or trust management to gamble with fire. The question is, is it reasonable to expect fans to go along with them?

    For exhibit A, look no further than every single team stockpiling cap space for 2010. The thinking goes like this: There will be free agents galore, and every franchise with money to burn will have a field day. Of course, we're already starting to see this talent pool shrink (Nash is off the table; Joe Johnson could be next; Yao's future is anyone's guess). Say what you will about the Pistons off-season signings, but seeing as most free agents tend to stick with their old team, was Dumars so rash to get two solid players right away?

    In addition, there's been a strange conflation of "many people are available in 2010" with "LeBron and Wade are up for grabs." Even if, say, the Knicks manage to pry Bosh, Dirk or Amare away from their current homes, wouldn't there be something of a letdown effect? The only way to wait on 2010 and still keep fans engaged is to create a near-infinite build-up, one that leads almost inevitably to Bron and Wade, the only two players capable of satisfying these pent-up expectations."

    Can Fans Wait Through the Tough Years? - Bethlehem Shoals - The Baseline - Sporting News
     

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