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If you’re a Pistons fan and you missed the Pistons at the Magic be thankful that you got a late holiday gift.  Orlando trounced Detroit leading the Pistons by as much as 22 point in their 109-92 win.

Key Points:

  • The Magic had not won on their own court in a month before Friday night.
  • The dynamic duo of Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond didn’t bring their games to Disney World.  Greg scored six with six boards, while Andre squeaked in another double-double with 10 points and 11 boards.
  • Gigi Datome with 21 minutes on the floor shot just 1-of-6.
  • Josh Smith 2-for-13 for five points.
  • A big zero for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope who played 24 minutes.
  • Despite how bad it looked and sounded, Detroit did make a run in the third quarter to get within seven. It was too bad that terrible ball handling and shot selection took them right out of it.
  • Another game where Detroit makes a struggling sub-par team look like All-Stars (exception Arron Afflalo).
  • Detroit, who lead the league in points in the paint were outscored by the Magic 58-48.
  • Brandon Jennings led the Pistons with 21 points and eight assists.
Brandon Jennings Pistons vs. Magic 12-27-2013

Photo Getty Images – Editing Need4Sheed.com

jenningsBrandon Jennings: “At this point right now, we need every win we can get, we don’t want to keep letting games like this slip.”

 

  • Jonas Jerebko and Josh Harrellson were the only two Pistons in the plus category for the game.  Josh scored nine points and six boards, while Jonas scored eight in 13 minutes.
  • Rodney Stuckey looks to have re-injured his shoulder.
  • Will Bynum with 18 points in 19:55 on the floor.
  • Video recap via NBA.com


  • I’m ready to wash this one away in hopes of a Wizards win Saturday night.

Watching the Pistons in Tuesday night’s game at the Palace of Auburn Hills against the Minnesota Timberswolves, you’d bet all the money you had that this team could never have beaten the NBA Champs a week earlier.  Detroit looked terrible against a mediocre Minnesota team losing, 121-94 on their home court.

Key Points:

  • Brandon Jennings led the way for Detroit with 20 points on 8-of-16 shooting with six assists on the night. The scoring numbers are good and his assists keep growing, but it Jennings doesn’t start playing better defense and stop turning the ball over this team is in for some serious ups and downs. The Timberwolves back-court made Brandon look like a high school player scoring on him with ease.  He finished the game with six of the Pistons 20 turnovers.
  • Kevin Love and Minnesota’s center Pekovic  out-shined the Pistons Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe.  Love was outstanding scoring 26 with 16 boards and seven assists.
  • Minnesota just played harder going to the line 33 times to the Pistons 16 foul attempts.  I will however say that the refs were a little biased toward the visiting team.
  • Best part of the game for a Pistons fan was this behind the back assist from Brandon Jennings to a trailing Andre Drummond for the Dunk.


  • This team need to work on their defense more than Gigi needs a shave and a haircut.
  • Speaking of Datome, he missed all of his six shots he attempted in garbage time.  He may never get going if he doesn’t get consistent minutes.  You can’t ask someone who’s never been in the NBA to hit his shots at a drop of a hat.  If he could do that he would have been a NBA player a long time ago.
  • Kentavious Caldwell-Pope had a career-high 16 points and grabbed four boards.  He’s improving every game he’s out there.
  • Never thought I’d say this but, this team misses Rodney Stuckey who’s still sidelined with an injury.
  • Chauncey Billups finally returned, but was just 2-of-7 for seven points in 18 minutes.
  • Josh Smith put up 17 on 7-of-14 shooting making just one of this five three-point attempts.
  • The Timberwolves led by as much as 30.
  • Highlights via NBA.com


  • Andre Drummond’s streak of six straight games with six or more offensive rebounds ended.  He finished the game with eight boards, eight points and two blocked shots.
  • I’m ready to wash this one away, but that all depends on what they do against the Pelicans on Wednesday night.

The #Pistons can’t be happy with their tenth straight loss in Atlanta. More than one thing went wrong for Detroit in the 85-93 loss.

Key Points:

  • Let’s start with the return of Josh Smith to Atlanta. They didn’t set off any fireworks for Smith’s return. From the experience I’ve had with ATL fans and from last night’s reception of Josh, Hawks fans were glad to rid themselves of Smith. They went as far as to cheer him at misses jump shots, which is a sign for Pistons fans. That aside Smith didn’t turn up the heat on the team and fan base that didn’t really want him on their side anymore. Josh was 5-of-15 and 0-for-4 from downtown. He finished with 11 points, six boards, two assists, three steals and two blocked shots in 35 minutes.
  • Maurice Cheeks was tossed late in the fourth quarter for arguing with refs after Stuckey fouled out on two questionable calls. Either way things weren’t going Cheeks way on the court. It’s too early to judge, but Cheeks isn’t doing well with adjustments on the court, especially on the defensive end.
  • The game started terribly for both the Hawks and the Pistons.
  • The Pistons led by four in the third quarter and looked like they might pull out a win, but they went through a dry spell that shut that down quickly. Late in the fourth quarter they were shooting so poorly that it was like watching a train wreck, ugly.
  • Caldwell-Pope, who grew up in George may have let hometown jitters get the best of him. He was 1-of-9 on the night with four points in his starting roll.
  • Someone needs to get Gigi acclimated with NBA defense. Datome scored five points with a board in 10:42 on court.
  • Too many easy buckets in the lane for the Hawks and the Pistons points in the paint where hard to come by. Each team scored 50 points in the paint, but the Hawks looked almost effortless.
  • Atlanta went on a 22-9 run in the fourth quarter that the Pistons couldn’t recover from.
  • Highlights via NBA.com


  • Smith, Monroe and Drummond combined for just 28 points.
  • Brandon Jennings led the Pistons with 21 points on 9-of-21 shooting with six assists and seven boards.
  • The shining stat of late for Detroit is their steals. The Pistons are tied with Dallas averaging 9.9 per game. The are second behind Dallas for Top points in the paint.
  • Give it up again for Stuckey for keeping the Pistons in the game. Stuckey scored 12 of his 18 points in the second quarter.
  • Andre’s production was down and a lot had to do with him being in foul trouble. He still however managed to put up a double-double with 10 points and 12 boards.
Andre Drummond Pistons-vs-Hawks Nov-2013

Photo Getty Images/Editing Need4Sheed.com

  • It was a disheartening loss from a team that has talent and started this season like they were going to play beyond expectations.
  • Let’s see what kind of changes Cheeks can make to get the win over Atlanta in Detroit on Friday night.

It’s time to take a look at all the new players on this Pistons roster. I’ll tell you one thing it’s going to be incredibly exciting, but also worrying. Detroit has a heck of a lot of talent, new hope but one thing keeps haunting me and that is…Josh Smith is not that good. I’ll get to that, but first let me run down the excitement with what seems will be our starting lineup in no particular order:

Greg-Monroe-Pistons-vs-Magic

Photo Getty Images – Editing Need4Sheed.com

Greg Monroe – Clearly Moose is our best player right now. He can operate out of the post he has interior passing, he can play the pick and roll, he can play inside out, he has an incredible basketball IQ, his only drawback is below average foot speed. Moose is going to be better this year than last year, and is already a leader of this team. I sometimes hear about people who want to trade Moose and I just don’t get it.

Andre Drummond Detroit Pistons

Photo Getty Images – Editing Need4Sheed.com

Andre Drummond – Comparisons for his ceiling are now, Shaq, Howard, Robinson. He’s an incredible athlete. There are no more concerns about his motor, his attitude, his game. All the reasons he dropped down to us in the draft are nothing now. Other teams have only regrets that they passed on the most exciting young center in the NBA. His game is not polished, and it will take years of work for him to get where he needs to go. But he can already do what he needs to do for us, finish at the rim, defend, and block. If you want to find a single word that describes the difference between perhaps the biggest bust in NBA history . . . Darko over Bosh, Melo and Wade and this amazing pick of Dre falling to us, that difference is soft hands. Darko was never going to make it in the NBA. It’s not his fault; he just does not have the hands for it. Dre on the other hand, is a freak of nature, great strength, agility and hands that the never drop the rock. There was a mistake that Dumars made selecting Darko and that was insufficient scouting. Ever since then, Dumars has been on top of his game, sure he has made some mistakes, like Brandon Knight or Daye, but they were never again a bad pick like Darko merely because he didn’t know the player. Dumars knew more than I think anyone else what Dre’s potential is when he picked him.

Chauncey Billups Detroit Pistons 2013

Photo Getty Images – Editing Need4Sheed.com

Chauncey Billups – Nothing pleases me more than to see Billups suit up again in the red white & blue. He will be forced into a position he is not very pleased with, a shooting guard. He would rather, I think come off the bench and lead the second unit as the point guard. We’ll see as the season goes where he ends up.  Mo Cheeks wants to reward vets by starting them, and making rooks earn their position.

Brandon Jennings Detroit Pistons

Photo Getty Images – Editing Need4Sheed.com

Brandon Jennings – the other Brandon. This is a point guard with only one decent arm, the left, but he is able to take care of the rock, work the pick and roll, and be a more complete player than Brandon Knight could be with both hands. I have come around to Jennings’ game, he is just the kind of player that we need to fit in along with our towers. One thing that will be there, with Jennings at the helm that might not be immediately obvious is that we will be able to take care of the rock. For the past few years, we have been a turnover prone team, but now with Jennings as our point guard, we will find it easier to score, easier to defend, and not be constantly chasing the other team in transition. Turnovers makes everything about basketball difficult, and with our new Brandon, it will all get a lot easier. No matter how many times I watched that commercial with Brandon Knight dribbling it didn’t make his handle any better.

Jennings has a decent handle.

Josh Smith Detroit Pistons 2013

Photo Getty Images – Editing Need4Sheed.com

Josh Smith – I look at Smith and I am forced to remember what Joe has done with other free agent signings. Allen Iverson (yeah not a real free agent but I’m including it anyway) Ben Gordon, Charlie Villanueva and now Josh Smith. Each time it’s the same problem. These are not bad players, the problem is that Dumars gets a bit of money in his pocket, it burns a hole in it and he has to spend it all. Ben Gordon would have been a great shooting guard off the bench at $6 million a year. Instead his salary was $12 million. Charlie V is a decent stretch 4 who can shoot the 3 with a very quick release, not as accurate as a shooting guard, but able to stretch the defense, and has a drawback of no defense. He would have been a great pick up at $4 million a year, instead we have him at $8 million. Allen Iverson, well I think everyone in Detroit can agree he’s poison. If you are from Philly you can argue how he’s one of the greatest of all time, but if you are from Michigan, well, he was horrible here.

And now Josh Smith $14 million for four years.

He’s a good player, but why does Joe have to overpay like this? Josh Smith does not fit well as a small forward in our team. This is the position where he has had the least success in his career, shooting ill-advised jumpers and what is more, with Moose and Dre on the floor, we will want him to shoot the three to stretch the defense, a shot that he falls in love with too easily. Yes he is a great defender, he gives us an answer to Melo or LeBron, but he creates problems for us on offense. Moose will be forced to shoot that jumper that he hasn’t been able to make last year, while Smith at small forward will want to use the mismatch to post up, but how can you post up with the paint clogged? You look at our pre-season games you see a lot of problems scoring, Josh is just not a good enough player to justify his salary, and Mo is pretty much forced to start him. Everything about the Josh Smith acquisition makes me worry. Spacing problems, poor shot selection, and our highest paid player playing out of position. If only we had him with less money, then we could bring him off the bench play him at a more natural power forward but you can’t do that when you pay so much.

Detroit Pistons 2013

Photo Getty Images – Editing Need4Sheed.com

Tony Mitchell is going to be good later, but for now he’s not NBA ready. Peyton Siva will be ready sometime later this year, but you can see he is just not used to the NBA athletes yet. Josh “Jorts” Harrellson was a cheap great pickup by Joe, though he hasn’t played enough minutes for us in pre-season what I have seen looks good. Gigi Datome, please heal up they will need your 3 point shooting. Datome was a great acquisition by Dumars. Singler, and Jerebko are going to thrive under Mo Cheeks you can tell he likes players who play hard on both the offense and defense and is willing to let them shoot themselves out of any slumps. KCP another great pick by Joe Dumars. I was a homer for Trey Burke for the longest time, but the more I see of KCP the more I like him, he can shoot, defend, has good size, and will be forced to earn his way into the starting lineup. Bynum, we are going to need him as a spare point guard, even though it seems like we have a lot of point guards after last year (when it seemed like we had none). Even in the preseason Bynum has played a lot of minutes because of injuries. Oh and Charlie Villanueva, I think he will be warming the bench a lot. Something about not playing any defense has rubbed our new coach the wrong way. Don’t get me wrong I like Charlie V, but he can’t just play one side of the floor. Stuckey I have always liked his game, but he is not a good fit because he can’t shoot jump shots. I hope he finds a good team somewhere else to play for, and put his “Hey” to good use.

Mo Cheeks Peyton Sive Kentavious Caldwell Pope

Photo Getty Images – Editing Need4Sheed.com

This team should make the playoffs based on the talent of two of our bigs Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond and the fact that they have a giant talent upgrade through the entire lineup. Did I forget to mention the fact the they have Rasheed Wallace as player development coach on the bench to help them?

Pre-Game Coach Sheed

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Joe Dumars has created an exciting team, full of new players, talent, athleticism, high basketball IQ, and veteran leadership. There is just one piece that worries me, how is Josh Smith going to fit in.

Joe Durmars picked up the big man he wanted.  According to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski Detroit reached and agreement with Josh Harrellson.

“Harrelson will hold a partial salary guarantee for the 2013-14 season, and the Pistons will hold the team option for the 2014-15 season, a source said.”

The 6-10 Harrellson  was the 45th overall pick out of Kentucky in the 2011 NBA Draft.  spent his entire rookie season  with the Knicks averaging 4.4 point in 14 minutes of play.

In July of 2012 he was traded to the Rockets and then waived in August of 2012. He signed with the Miami Heat in January of 2013 then waived again.

In the short time he was not in the NBA he played in Puerto Rico and China.

It has not been officially announced just yet, but it likely will be today.

Josh Harrelson and GiGi Datome

Photos via NBA.com

This isn’t a head turning deal, but he should be a serviceable big man to back up Andre and Moose. I’m just wondering if he brings the lumber jack bearded look to Detroit, because I’m not sure Gigi wants any competition in the facial hair department.

Cartoon Gigi DatomeDetroit Pistons forward Italian sharp shooter Luigi Datome tooned. Datome wasn’t easy for me to do since it was difficult for me to know what look he was sporting, after many different pictures I saw on the interwebs.  I had my answer after talking with a fellow Pistons fan from Italy who followed Gigi and was eager to know if I was going to toon him like all the other Pistons. He let me know that the beard and the pulled back pony tale was the way to go, so here it is.

Follow Detroit Pistons on TwitterSo follow @GigiDatome on twitter and get to know him before he starts sinking shots in a Detroit Pistons uniform.