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So we’ve got some down time between now and the end of Summer when it comes to Pistons basketball.  What better to do than discuss who would be on your 12 man roster of All Time Detroit Pistons.  Some of the readers here are only old enough to know the young(er) guys like Rodney Stuckey, Tayshaun Prince, or Grant Hill, while some of the old(er) readers remember Dave Bing, Bob Lanier and even Dave DeBusschere.

Let’s set some ground rules:

  1. 2 point guards, 2 shooting guards, 1 combo guard/forward, 2 small forwards, and 5 power forward/center types.  Although the Miami Heat showed they can win without a true big man, there are enough good Pistons big men from the past that could get the job done.
  2. Pick a Coach, and coaching staff.  Your coaching staff can be a complete staff from a particular coach, if you’re not aware of the individuals who have coached over the years.
  3. Pick a uniform era (Teal era, Bad Boys blue and white, old blue and white with thunderbolt, etc)
  4. Pick an arena (likely all will pick The Palace, since The Silverdome was awful)

Ok, with all of that said, here is my team and an explanation as to why for each:

  1. Isiah Thomas (Starting PG): Hall of Famer.  Fiery leader who left it all out on the floor each night.
  2. Chauncey Billups (PG): Quiet leader who let his game do the talking.  Value was truly unknown to this team until his was traded.
  3. Joe Dumars (Starting SG): More of a combo guard than anything, because of his ball handling skills.  There is not a better guard tandem to have ever played this game than the backcourt of Thomas and Dumars.  Plus, he was my favorite player growing up.
  4. Vinnie Johnson (SG): Instant offense off the bench – may not be more talented than Richard Hamilton, but if I need a guy off the bench I want the Microwave.  (Note: my omission of Rip Hamilton is not meant to be a slight against him)
  5. Dave Bing (Combo SG/PG): Hall of Famer.  Bing was a player who was way ahead of his time.  Averaged 22 points a night in an era where the 3 point shot wasn’t available.
  6. Adrian Dantley (Starting SF): A lot of people will say that Mark Aguirre put the team over the top, because Dantley was only good at one end of the floor (offense).  Dantley made his impression on me as a youth with his scoring ability and high socks which made it look like he was faster than he actually is.
  7. Tayshaun Prince (SF): “The Block” is what should put him on every All Time Pistons team for the rest of his life.  That block was what helped propel the Pistons into the 2004 Finals for their franchise’s 3rd NBA Title.
  8. Dennis Rodman (Starting PF): “The Worm” is there to get under your skin.  A lock down defender against guys twice his size and weight.  Awful on offense, but with all the shots being hoisted up by my backcourt, I need solid rebounding down low.
  9. Ben Wallace (Starting C): Having Big Ben start alongside Rodman leaves me short up front, but who scores on these guys when both are in their prime?  This front court could average 24 rebounds a night.
  10. Bob Lanier (Backup PF/C): Averaged 23 and 12 a night for the majority of his career.  Left handed big men always get bonus points with me.
  11. Rasheed Wallace (Backup PF/C): Is the best stretch Power Forward from an era when the stretch power forward became a fad.  Known for his constant trash talking, Rasheed has been called the best teammate that his teammates ever had.
  12. Rick Mahorn (PF/C – 12th man/head benchmob cheerleader): Mahorn was a load in the paint.  Would smile in your face if he knew you didn’t like it.
  13. Chuck Daly (Head Coach): The implementer of the “Jordan Rules” would relish the chance to design defenses to guard some of today’s young “me first” basketball players.
  14. 1989-1990 Coaching Staff: Lead by future Toronto Head Coach Brendan Malone.
  15. The Palace of Auburn Hills (Arena): The Palace still looks new to me.  In an era where things have to be “bigger and better”, the Palace has been able to thrive for over 20 years now.  Sure, there have been several facelifts and modifications.  But like with fine wine, the Palace seems to get better with age.
  16. Bad Boys era blue and white Pistons uniforms:  Something about these unis signified toughness for me.  If it wasn’t the plain block lettering with the big red and white stripes, it was the plain blue shorts with the stripes around your waist and down your thighs (like boxing trunks).  Plain and simple, until they were screwed up by the teal era.

Detroit Bad Boys

Honorable mention: Grant Hill, Bill Laimbeer, Richard Hamilton, James Edwards, and John Salley.  Larry Brown and Flip Saunders.

I couldn’t nominate Grant Hill to be a starter, because although he was one of the best players to ever wear the Pistons red blue and white, he wanted to get out of Detroit.  He wanted to escape the teal era.  I couldn’t do Rip either – too many guys who were the epitome of Pistons basketball for me growing up as a child of the late 80s and early 90s.  These are guys who I emulated on the basketball court myself.  Buddha and Salley were tough casualties, but I could only keep 12.  Same with Laimbeer.

So let’s hear it Pistons fans, who is your All Time team?  I can admit I wasn’t around to see Bob Lanier or Dave Bing play, but their stats don’t lie.  It would be fun watching the combination of Ben and Rasheed Wallace match up against the big men from the Bad Boys era, like Laimbeer and Salley had to.

 

Ben Wallace FRO

The second part of the Ben Wallace video that takes us from Rick Carlisle, to Larry Brown to Flip and then Skiles.  The beginning of his run in Detroit with the Defense player of the year awards, the birth of Wallace X2 and the somewhat bitter departure.

Looking back like this, along with his play this season, really shows us what place this man has in the city of Detroit.

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Video Courtesy of The Detroit Pistons and FSD

Click here for Part I

The Piston will gladly take the 94-98 grind out win against their former coach Flip Saunders and his Washington Wizards. Their two game winning streak isn’t something that’s going in the record books, but the battered and bruised Pistons need every win then can get.

Key Points:

  • The Pistons did a great job moving the ball, it was almost like the ghost of Larry Brown was in the building….three passes before they shoot.  The movement, from the bigs and the guards, made for easy shots all night long.
  • A fired up Charlie Villanueva, who still doesn’t seem like he’s used to the mask, scored 18 points on 8-19 shooting with 5 assists, 4 boards in 36 minutes.  His four point play gave the Pistons a boost right when they needed it.
  • Detroit did a better job with the turnovers, just 11 opposed to the 21 they had on Friday night.
  • Another good night in the paint for Detroit with 38 points down low.
  • Board war tied at 41.
  • Great night for Detroit’s bench who outscored the starters 55-44.
  • Earl Boykins always amazes me.  Guy can shoot and with his size I’m so surprised his shot doesn’t get blocked more.  He’s like a Micro Machine basketball player.
  • Need4Swede: Jonas is putting up double-doubles and making circus shots…check it out.
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  • Jerebko finished the game with 10 points, 11 boards, a steal and an assist in 38 minutes on the floor.  Plus a few more fans with every game he plays.  On another note, my SWEEEEEDE chant at games when he’s got the ball isn’t catching on just yet, can you please pass the word to whoever you know is going to the game or if you are yourself, please join me…people are looking at me like I think he’s Sheed.
  • Jason Maxiell’s playing time is odd to me, one night he’s out there a ton and tonight he plays just 9 minutes.
  • Out-blocked again…Pistons with just one block from Ben Wallace all night, while Washington bats the ball away 7 times.
  • I wonder if we can get a stat on how many of Rodney Stuckey’s shots get blocked.  I bet quite a few less than they used to.
Photo/Getty Images
  • As for Stuckey’s game against Washington, he was great.  Hot early and, had he not been in early foul trouble, he would have led the Pistons by more than just 25 points.  Stuck went 9-for-18 with 2 assists, 4 boards a steal, 3 turnovers and some clutch shots down the wire when the Wizards were gaining ground.
  • Stucktaular Highlights via NBA.com
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  • Ben Gordon played just 11 minutes scoring just 5.  He didn’t play in the second half, nursing his sore ankle on the bench.
  • Say thank you to Austin Daye, who didn’t play in the first half and came out shooting in the second to help the Pistons get on track after leading by just three at the half.  Cool hand Daye finished with 11 points, shooting 100% from the field with 2 boards in just 12 minutes of play.
Photo/Getty Images
  • Auststanding Highlights:
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  • A bit of a slow night for Ben Wallace who didn’t score, but grabbed 8 boards with 5 assists.  Yes, five assists for our very own Defensive Machine.
  • Ok, I know we all were like ….seriously, Joe Dumars just signed Chucky Atkins?  I eat my words, Atkins is really making the most of his time back in Detroit.  Chucky scored 7 with 5 assists in 22 minutes.  He gave the Pistons some life, scoring his points early when they couldn’t hit a shot no matter how hard they tried.
  • Awful first few minutes of the game for both teams.
  • Gotta love holding Gilbert Arenas to just 8 points.
  • Highlights of the game via NBA.com
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  • Mixed reaction by the crowd who really didn’t realize this was Flip Saunders’ return.
  • Nice passing from Kwame Brown who scored 4 with 2 assists and 5 boards.
  • What’s up with the Thrill, 3-for-12 shooting and he missed some key free throws that the Pistons really needed in the closing minute of the game. Bynum scored 16, but once again isn’t playing like we know he can.  I hope his ankle isn’t getting worse.
  • Funny story, I overhead some guy tell his friend he was at the game with, “Chucky Atkins must have been really hurt, I haven’t seen him play a lot for us since we won the Championship.” His friend answered, “me neither.”
  • Good win for Detroit, who play Allen Iverson in Philadelphia on Wednesday and Chauncey Billups on Thursday at the Palace.  That’s going to be something.
  • Don’t forget, Need4Sheed and viagogo are giving Pistons tickets away!

The 7-12 Pistons take on the 7-11 Flip Saunders’ Wizards at the Palace Sunday evening. Washington is coming in off Friday’s 109-107 overtime loss to Toronto, just their second defeat in six games after opening 3-9.

Nothing official yet to when either Tayshaun or Rip will be back, but the way things are sounding it looks like Tay will wind up taking the court first. For those of you who are worried about your NEED4SWEDE…you’ll be just fine, JJ will play some power forward with Tay back in the fold.

When and if Prince and Hamilton get healthy, rookie Jonas Jerebko will see time at power forward, a position he is athletic enough to handle.
“He’s too valuable to our team right now, and he brings so much to the plate,” Kuester said. “He’s going to find some time at the four position also.” Via The Detroit Free Press

The Scouting Report via Pistons.com

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Tip is at 6:00 pm EST and will be televised on Fox Sports Plus. For the radio broadcast tune into WWJ AM 950 or follow the action on NBA.com.

If you’re headed out to the Palace for the game please try to give a hand (literally) by donating gloves or mittens for The Pistons Good Hands, Warm Hands Mitten Drive.

NEED4SHEED GAME CHAT

I will start this post with my apologies for the hiccups on the site the past two days. It seems as though the server had issues, but I think I’m back up and running at about 80% right now. Now on with my analogy.

I came to the conclusion last night that the Pistons are like a blind date.  Just bear with me here.

As Pistons fans (some say) we are spoiled. Our team has enjoyed great success over the past few years and quite frankly we aren’t used to dealing with them struggling (other than in the playoffs).

  • Blame it on Dumars.
  • Blame it on Curry.
  • Blame it on a new DAILY lineup change.
  • Blame it on Allen Iverson for stealing our floor general and captain.
  • Blame it Rasheed for his technicals and three point affinity.
  • Blame it on the rotation or lack thereof.
  • Blame it on Rodney Stuckey for being put in a position to run the team when he’s just learning how to be a point guard in the NBA.
  • Blame it on chemistry.
  • Blame it on Kwame Brown, who hasn’t seen enough time to make it count or not count.
  • Blame it on turnovers.
  • Blame it on David Stern.
  • Blame it on the Officials.
  • Blame it on Amir Johnson, who hasn’t had the chance to develop in the helter-skelter thing we would call “a system.”
  • Blame it on the lack of play of Jason Maxiell.
  • Blame it on Walter Herrmann’s hair.
  • Blame it on Flip Saunders (who right now is probably enjoying all of this).
  • Hell blame it on Darko…..

Lay the blame wherever you want, but it will do you no good. It’s a free fall that none of us were prepared for when this season started.

Photo/Getty Images

As Pistons fans, do yourself a favor. Go into each game like you would if you were going on a Blind Date.  Expect the worst and if your date ends up with teeth, no unpleasant, unidentifiable odor,  no visible open sores and the ability to speak the same language that you do it’s a plus.  And if they actually turn out to be nice, normal and not a stalker….it’s like putting a W in the win column.

Expect nothing and when you find your Prince Charming/Cinderella it makes the win that much better.

This lesson brought to you by Need4Sheed.com. You can thank me later.