Saturday, May 24, 2008

The Detroit Pistons Are Just So Frustrating

This had all the makings of a classic night in Detroit sports history. The Detroit Tigers awaken from their season-long hibernation and put up 19 runs against the Minnesota Twins. The Detroit Red Wings open up the Stanley Cup Finals with a 4-0 shellacking of the Pittsburgh Penguins. And the Detroit Pistons, of course they would take care of the Boston Celtics in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Finals. They had just stolen Game Two in Boston, and of course, the Celtics had yet to win a road playoff game this season.

What do the Pistons do? They decide to do what they have done all season, and that's show up for one quarter. Unfortunately for the Pistons, they were already down 24 points when they decided, "Hey, we should probably show up tonight." If the Pistons were a young team, learning how to win, learning how to play in big games, then inconsistent performances would be acceptable, even expected. But, this is a team that has been to six straight Eastern Conference Finals. Their play is simply inexcusable. Playing hard when you feel like it, playing hard only when you feel like you need to, that's not what a championship team does. And it's why the Detroit Pistons are destined to lose to the Boston Celtics and fall short of the NBA Finals yet again.

One thing we have learned this series so far is that Rodney Stuckey is going to be a star. So much so, that if I were Joe Dumars, I would think seriously, really seriously, about blowing this team up. The Pistons, in their current form, with their current core, have gotten content with winning 50-plus regular season games, sleep-walking through the playoffs, and getting close, but not close enough. Putting the same pieces together again next year and hoping they don't put their game on cruise control is not how to win another NBA Championship.

Putting the same team back together for another run is what's easy. It's the safe course. Joe Dumars, though, should take a risk. He should take a step back in 2009 because it could mean a huge step forward in 2010. Trade Chauncey Billups. Drop Rasheed Wallace. Move Jason Maxiell and Rodney Stuckey into the starting lineup. Oh, and fire Flip Saunders and get a new coach, with some new ideas, and most importantly, some new motivational techniques, in the building.

This current iteration of the Pistons have given us some great memories, and an NBA Title. But it's over. We aren't going to win another NBA Championship with this current team, and keeping them together, while it may make town feel good with their 50-win seasons and constant trips to the Eastern Conference Finals, will not win another ring in its current form. And it's time we stop pretending that they will, realize that we have some very impressive young players, and give them the change to succeed or fail, and hopefully, change the face of the Pistons franchise once again, brining a hunger and determination which the Pistons just simply does not have right now.

Add To: Digg! Reddit Del.Icio.Us Stumble



© New Blogger Templates | Webtalks