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After each game this Pistons fan would to tell herself, “it’s ok things will get better.” And after each game of telling myself that, I looked into the mirror and realized how unrealistic and idiotic I was being.

I no longer utter those words to myself. Why? Because this team is a train wreck.Fennis Dembo

I’ve watched them through the teal years. I’ve watched the selection of Mateen Cleaves, Rodney White and Darko. I watched Fennis Dembo and William Bedford ride the bench, and even cheered for Pepe Sanchez when he got garbage minutes. And for some reason I have a maroon Stacey Augmon Pistons jersey.

So why after being so positive though all of my years as a fan has it come to this?

Andre Drummond NBA Detroit Pistons WallpaperBecause this year was supposed to be different. This was the year they were supposed to turned the corner after being in limbo for more years than I care to remember.  They have a superstar in Andre Drummond, but the pieces around him don’t fit the puzzle. This team is broken and I blame the one person I always gave a pass to.

In Joe Dumars I don’t trust…anymore.

In Joe Dumars I don't Trust

How do I loathe thee…let me count the ways.

  • Allen Iverson
  • Michael Curry
  • John Kuester
  • Keeping the Championship team together too long
  • Ben Gordon
  • Charlie Villanueva
  • Austin Daye
  • Rip Hamilton’s extended stay
  • A player mutiny
  • Jason Maxiell’s extended stay with a healthy payday

I can go on and on, but I won’t. It’s been said enough times by most of you. So now what?

Bless Joe D, he’ll still always be one of my favorite players of all time, and I thank him for the many years of happiness on court and off with the Pistons.


He brought us championships as a player and a GM,  but he also had many gifts fall in his lap like Greg Monroe, Andre Drummand and even Ben Wallace. They need a fresh start.

Tom Gores at The Palace

Photo Getty Images

I’m also not putting all the blame on Dumars, he had issues when he couldn’t do much during the sale of the team.  And I’ve seen enough of Tom Gores to know that he could care less about this basketball team.

You can spend hours of time and possibly your sanity on the trade machine, but things like that just never seem to work out.  Pistons fans are in a tough spot. You wish for a trade that may help this team in the future, but you’re afraid of the outcome of the trade.  It’s also terrible to think that this team miss out on anything before the deadline.

And do you trust that freed up cap space can be used wisely?

Charlie Villanueva and Ben Gordon

Photo Getty Images

I also can understand many of you who at this point would rather see this team tank for a pick then have them slide into the playoffs in the awful Eastern Conference only to get dismantled in the first round.

I don’t know why, but at times I feel the need to apologize myself for this mess to someone who cared more than all of us put together. Sorry Bill.

Bill Davidson

Photo Getty Images

So now we just sit back and watch this team that isn’t gelling get hammered by teams at the bottom of the barrel. But guess what…this team is the bottom of the barrel.

They need help, or a miracle.

I had a sad realization on Saturday night as I was watching the #Pistons take on the Bobcats.

I shouldn’t care that much when this team beats the Bobcats on a second shot by Charlie Villanueva.

I don’t know about you, but I always considered myself a true Pistons fan. I understand that they are in a transition and working towards building the team back up. I don’t expect record-breaking crowds at the Palace. I don’t think a sought after free agent will sign with this team unless some sort of blackmail is involved. I’m not expecting Tom Gores to do the things that Bill Davidson may have done to make Detroit a contender. I don’t think lottery balls will ever fall in the Pistons favor. I can go on and on.

I have taken things a little different in regards to watching the team the past few years. Contrary what most people think I am a team person not a player person. I know you wouldn’t think that since you are on a site called Need4Sheed, but it’s true. I may like certain players, but at the end of the day I’m all about the team. So when this team started their transition into what they are right now I started mine too.

George Blaha BobbleHeadI didn’t get a stomach ache any more after a team loss. I didn’t have to take the exact same route to the game. I stopped doing my little ritual when passing by a certain landmark on the way to ensure that the Pistons won. I didn’t find it necessary to always walk into the same door at the Palace when attending a game. I didn’t make sure I rubbed the top of George Blaha’s bobble head like he was a Buddha and say “count that baby and a foul,” before I sat down to watch a road game in my living room.

In other words, I stopped acting nuts.

So on Saturday night when I was watched Detroit struggle to beat a team that have just as many wins in the past two seasons as Michael Jordan’s jersey number I realized I care just as much about this team as I did when they were dominating the eastern conference. I had to record the game because I had a birthday party to go to, but when I got to the restaurant I noticed they had a bar with a bunch of TV screens. All of them on the NCAA tournament but one. The one at the very end where nobody was sitting was turned to the Pistons game. Heck with the birthday party, I grabbed my drink and plopped down in front of the Pistons game and watched the last quarter of the game.

I cheered,  squirmed in my seat, and I was a little too loud when Charlie V hit his shot. I cheered because I cared, and so did the team. A win, even though it didn’t really matter, mattered more than I ever thought it could.

So I can pretend that I don’t really care as much as I used to, but I’d be lying to myself.

It’s the little things that make you realize how much you love things even when they may not be as good as they used to be. I look forward to being as nuts as I used to be.

To the future of the Pistons.

 

The #Pistons lost to the Pacers Saturday night at the Palace of Auburn Hills 88-77.  I could go into my normal recap style of why, how and who did what, but I just feel like venting frustrations a little.

As a fan who goes to her fair share of games for more than 20 years, it’s getting pretty depressing at The Palace of Auburn Hills.  It’s rough heading out to a mid-week game against the Cavaliers.  I had my pick of parking spaces, I didn’t wait in line at any time for a beverage.  Heck I never even had to wait in line to use the restroom. But most of all, I didn’t get threatened by a rabid Cavs fan who infiltrated our home court.

Those things may sound petty, but it just goes to show you the state of our beloved team.  It’s not like this team hasn’t gone though tough times.  Most of us remember the “Teal Years” and some of us even remember the pre-Isiah days.  But there is something a bit different about what’s going on and how it unfolded the past few seasons.

december_5_07_billups

Sure we miss Chauncey, and it’s nice to see Rasheed back screaming “Ball Don’t Lie” for the Knicks, but it was time to move on from a team that just couldn’t win together anymore.  The thing that bothers me is the way it happened was almost spirit crushing from a fans perspective.  As we watched the team go from contenders to pretenders in a little more than a season, I don’t think we actually thought it would get as bad as it did.

We had a first time NBA coach who really was in over his head.  We had another coach that had a horrible and public fight with a star player that led to a mutiny. We had a beloved owner pass away that left an unbelievable legacy and the team in limbo until his widow could sell the team.

We also have Bandwagon fans, you know it and I know it.  If you’re reading this, you’re probably not one of them, but the Piston have the biggest “Bandwagon Cats” (as Sheed would say) as fans as any team in Michigan.  I’m almost embarrassed by it.  I hate everything about the Cleveland Cavaliers, the building they play in and their fans, but kudos to them for packing The Q on a week day game against the Pistons.

Are you depressed yet?

I could go and on and on.

I think what’s bothering me most of all lately is the fact that I think this team is on the cusp.  I think they should be winning more than they are.  I’m so over the company line of why they  aren’t winning, they’re tired, they’re on long road trip…blah blah blah.  They have young talent that just needs the right direction. They need to learn how to win and they need something or someone to help them do that.

Andre Drummond Pistons-vs-SunsWe all think that Andre Drummond should play more, he’s even has heard the rumblings. It doesn’t look like this team is playoff bound so why not see what kind of players we have and what we need to do to get to the next level? Sure they sent Middletion and English to the D-League to get playing time and we know that Kravtsov is a project but that’s not everything.

Why is Jerebko the new Charlie V? What’s going on with Greg Monroe’s regression? Why play Maggette so much when he’s really just a one and done? Can the Pistons ever get anything for Austin Day?  Will Dumars ever make a move? When will Frank show us that he’s the guy for the job?

Has the holiday depression set in yet?

I know it’s tough to keep supporting a team when they’re not winning, but it’s what real fans do. Sure there isn’t the fire (literally they don’t have the pre-game fire anymore)  there once was at the Palace, but it’s still great heading out to the Palace to support your team, not just the Bel Biv Devoe half time show. You really should take advantage of going to a game if you haven’t in a while, they’re begging for people in the seats and are practically giving tickets away.  When you can go to a Pistons game for less than going to a movie you know times are really tough.

Heck if you head out to the game and see me we can commiserate together.

So don’t let the Pistons get you down this holiday season, just enjoy them for what they are.  But make sure you ask Santa to give them a hand.

Santa Dumars

We have all heard the saying “All good things must come to an end” sometimes it’s for the good and sometimes not.  Just ask Lions fans.

Today I got a glimpse into what Pistons fans (as well as anyone who attends an event at The Palace) have in store for them now that Tom Gores and his team have remade The Palace.

Today the media was formally introduced to Dennis Mannion, President of The Detroit Pistons and Palace Sports and Entertainment. My first impression of Dennis is that he is a man that knows what he’s doing.  Mannion has spent 29 years working in the four major professional sports leagues (MLB, NBA, NHL, NFL), including two years managing business operations for the NBA’s Denver Nuggets and the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche from 1998 to 1999.  Mannion most recently served as President of the Los Angeles Dodgers where he worked from 2007 to 2010.  He also previously worked for the Baltimore Ravens from 1999 to 2007, and for the Philadelphia Phillies from 1982 to 1997.  If you question his effectiveness as a Front Office Executive, I would direct you to look at the 1996 MLB All Star Game in Philadelphia and the 2000 NHL All Star Game in Denver (Colorado Avalanche), both events he was instrumental in bringing to the cities.

Dennis Mannion

Not only does Mannion have a vision, he has brought in a team of new people and a new philosophy to the Company and organization.

  • LUCINDA TREAT – Executive Vice President of Business Operations & Strategy Insideout Sports & Entertainment – Madison Square Garden- New England Sports Ventures – Boston Red Sox – Florida Marlins
  • CHARLIE METZGER – Chief Marketing & Communications Officer
  • KEN CATANELLA – Director of Basketball Operations
  • HARLAN HENDRICKSON – Vice President of Lifestyle Marketing Denver Nuggets & Colorado Avalanche
  • LAUREN MILLER – Director of Fan Lifestyles
  • IGGY RODRIGUEZ -Director of Promotions
  • DANIELLE WILLIAMS – Community Partnerships Manager
  • HEATHER COLLART – Community Relations Manager

They really did stress Tom Gores vision of Coming Together.

At first glance, things looked different walking into the West Atrium of The Palace.  Instead of the standard wall of photos, you’re now greeted with 3 large screen LED video displays of Pistons Players.

As Dennis spoke he explained that his team wanted to take The Palace to new levels.  They are working on a new cohesive color scheme fitting for The Palace, which seems to have landed on silver and blue.

The Palace Floor

This whole revamp wasn’t just about the Pistons, it was about about everything that has to do with The Palace Sports and Entertainment.

The whole idea of this revamp was to help the fans enjoy their experience at The Palace, if they were going to a Pistons game or coming to the Palace for a concert.

This, of course, meant making the Pistons players happy.  The more comfortable the team is, the greater chance you have of a cohesive, winning team. It starts with the door they walk into on game day. The new locker room door encased in silver with a blue neon glow is a very good start.

The entire locker room was revamped with each players personal space a little more personal.

Locker Room Door Pistons

  • Pistons Players LoungeA new media wall to watch clips and videos game day along with one of the best in the biz Charles Klask to bring the team the stats they need to win.
  • A few steps away…a new players lounge with a big screen TV for players to relax and unwind.
  • Less of a drive, as the Pistons team plane now lands just a short drive from The Palace of Auburn Hills.
  • A revamped training area right next to the locker room doesn’t hurt either.
  • As for Pistons Fans….Come out to see the Pistons Opening Night and you’ll see things you’ve never seen before.
  • A new court.
  • New banners in the rafters.
  • A new video presentation.
  • New lighting.
  • New giveaways, one for almost every home game.
  • New theme nights (yes, there is a Star Wars Night FEB 10th).
  • Tons of new Video Features.
  • A new intro!
  • A new (and I won’t spoil it) kick off to the season for the Season Opener.
  • A new way of doing things.
  • New Twitter video boards in The Palace come Feb 14th to interact via Twitter with fans at The Palace.
  • A New Beginning.

We may not always want change, but it’s inevitable.  With Tom Gores and Co. changing things for the better, and giving Pistons fans a push towards a social media, digitally friendly, fan based environment ….we all win.

Jonas Jerebko's Locker

I haven’t been this excited to go the the season opener since we won the championship in 2004.

To a new and prosperous beginning….that remembers the past.

Good things don’t always come to an end, sometimes they just move into a different direction.

I’ll see you Opening Night!

Danny and I along with Dave Wieme, the former Director of Strategic Communications for The Pistons, our new permanent member of the Podcast team just wrapped up the Pistons preseason in a fresh new podcast for your listening pleasure.

We covered what we saw in the Pistons two preseason games.  We also went into a number of topics like, Rodney Stuckey’s signing, Vernon Macklin, Brandon Knight, Danny’s sadness over not landing poster boy Kris Kardashian, Austin Daye’s emergence, Tayshuan Prince’s roll, Moose Monroe, the Need4Sheed and more.  We also each gave our Breakout player of the season as well as posed the question: Who’s going to win more games, The Pistons this season or Justin Verlander?

Dave WiemeWe also got into something you may not know about.  The new Management at The Pistons have removed Bill Davidson’s name off the court.  For many of you that might not mean much, but for this fan it was very upsetting to see his name gone.

Take a listen and feel free to comment.

New Need4Sheed.com Detroit Pistons Podcast  – Preseason Wrap

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A clear sunny day in the Metropolitan Detroit area served as a perfect setting for the changing of the guard, at The Palace of Auburn Hills.

The Palace floor, setting for 3 Pistons championship seasons, was transformed into a stage awaiting the man that will be taking control of the beloved Detroit franchise.

All of the Pistons media and key figures in the Pistons’ Organization were there. Charlie V, Ben Gordon and Rodney Stuckey were the only current players in attendance. George Blaha, Special K, Mason, Mark Champion, and your favorite radio and TV personalities were there as well.  Rick Mahorn and James Edwards were in the house talking it up and Joe Dumars was sitting right up front with Alan Ostfield at his side.

A video montage of Pistons highlights, old and new, played while Platinum Equity partners and old acquaintances of Mr. Gores from his days in Michigan mixed in giving us a glimpse into the man along with the glory days of the franchise.

Before Gores spoke we got a chance to hear from Karen and Ethan Davidson, who both touched on Mr. Gores, and how emotional of a day it was for them. The bittersweet sentiment from Ethan would have made any fan of his father sad, as he remembered the past, he also thanked Mr. Gores for letting them be a small part of the future.

Tom Gores

Photo/AP editing Need4Sheed.com

Tom then came out, introduced by Mark Barnhill of Platinum Equity, while two key figures of the new Palace regime Philip Norment and Bob Wentworth sat at the table waiting for the Q&A.

 

He began by thanking the Davidson family, and then started talking about how he plans to run the organization:

“I need to deliver on the standards of your passion. This is a very passionate city, and it can be demanding. I think it can bring out the best in all of us. I promise I will lose sleep to deliver to the standards.”

“It’s my job to bring Championship #4 to Detroit.”

I can’t do the whole thing justice, but you can watch the presser in it’s entirety below.  And yes…I did get a few questions in.

Get the Flash Player to see this content.

Video Via Pistons.com

Now what you take from the press conference may be different from what I took away from it. I can tell you I especially loved the question Stoney asked…

“What’s more important…making money or winning a Championship?”

Brilliant, and he really did answer it honestly…I think.

Now we can sit here and worry that he sounded too corporate, but honestly it’s what I expected from him. We are talking about a man who has come from nothing, and made billions of dollars before he’s even hit fifty years old. If the Pistons didn’t have the Palace Sports and Entertainment package attached to it, we wouldn’t even be talking about Mr. Gores right now. That I truly believe.

So he lives in LA now,  and you know he admitted to me that “I’m not a Lakers fan…anymore”.  He’s got two right hand men from Boston who will probably be more visible to the public when it comes to the team, than he is down the line. He said some of the things that the City of Detroit wanted to hear and some things that an investor in Platinum Equity wants to hear, and that’s ok.

He’s going to lean on Joe Dumars as his “basketball guy”, and push him to make the right decisions.  Gores spoke of how successful business make mistakes, and how “that’s ok” but he expects quick turnaround on the mistakes.

As for Kuester, yes he pronounced his name wrong, but I don’t think that matters. He didn’t say the words, but you can bet Q’s days are numbered.

Tom Gores toonThis is new territory for him, and you can definitely tell.  If you don’t give this man a chance, then you’re very close minded. We have no idea how this thing is going to unfold just yet, so lets learn with Gores and Platinum.

I’ll tell you he’s quite a presence, he can win you over with his smile and a handshake. And he honestly looked like a kid in a candy store once he was off the podium.

“Starting tomorrow, we’re going to go full speed ahead”

It’s Gores Time.

It was an emotional night at the Palace with a bulk of the Bad Boys on hand the Pistons honored Dennis Rodman by retiring his jersey and hanging it in the rafters of the Palace.

If you didn’t have the honor of following Dennis’s career you probably don’t realize what kind of person he really is.  The hair, tattoos and the stunts don’t even scratch the surface of the emotion, heart and will that Dennis had. Rodman left his mark on this franchise and not only will his jersey hang in the rafters of the Palace forever, the’s going to deservedly be inducted into the Basketball Hall of fame this year.

The Palace was electric and trust me when I tell you there wasn’t a dry eye (including my own) in the house when Dennis held up the t-shirt with a picture of Chuck Daly and Mr. Davidson that said Thank You Detroit on the back.

Photo/Getty Images editing Need4Sheed.com

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Video courtesy of the NBA and the Detroit Pistons

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Class act Dennis, no matter what you think you deserve all of this. We thank you!

The Pistons All-Star Break Breakdown Podcast.

Need4Sheed PodcastDanny and I are back with a new episode of the Need4Sheed.com com Detroit Pistons Podcast. Fresh from the All-Star Break we break down the weekend, Greg Monroe’s performance, the dunk contest, the sale of the team, the Kuester situation, and our biggest disappointments of the season.

Danny also make a very BOLD prediction that may have you thinking he’s either a genius or just nuts.

Take a listen and by all means give us your feedback and questions for the next show.

New Need4Sheed.com Detroit Pistons Podcast – All-Star Break Breakdown

Download the Podcast

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It was one of those days where I had time to search through my Sheeednormous video archive when I happened to stumble across a good one.

It’s a top ten what if’s that have sealed the fate of our Detroit Pistons.  What makes me think a little more since the last time I watched this video (about 2 seasons ago) is what has happened since this video was put together and the uncertainty around what twists and turns we are in for once the team has a new owner.

Get the Flash Player to see this content.

Video Courtesy of the NBA and The Detroit Pistons.

With the news of Mike Ilitch expressing interest today in buying the Pistons some things need to be said.  While I would love for the Ilitch’s to buy the team and keep them  in the state, I’m skeptical of the timing and the public statement by Ilitch to the media.

Think about it, if you wanted to pursue a business deal, wouldn’t you make the deal behind the scenes first and then notify the media when you knew the deal was in place?

On the Pistons side of things, there has been a major beef between Davidson and Ilitch that’s been public knowledge for years.  And that pesky lawsuit doesn’t help one bit.

Need4Ceasars

Tom Wilson joining forces with Ilitch can’t make the Davidson clan feel good about selling the team to a man who already owns half of the states professional teams.

Yes it’s Caesarland, but how much dough does Ilitch holdings have?  I don’t think enough to successfully sustain a payroll of three major sports teams.

And if I’m Mike Ilitch and my dynasty of a hockey team is playing in that abysmal, beyond outdated arena that sadly bares the name of Joe Louis (he deserves better), I would be ecstatic rolling both of my teams right in the Palace of Auburn Hills.  It sure doesn’t look like the city of Detroit has enough cash to even think about financing a arena befitting of that team.

It’s like being handed the keys to a full furnished penthouse apartment when you live in a slum.  Would you move?

It seems like a perfect fit and a story that will make the headlines.  Ilitch “All Hail Caesar”….

Will it pan out?  I sure hope so.

Call me a pessimist if you will, but I just made you think.