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The 8-20 Pistons will try to continue to add on to their season-high win streak at the Palace Sunday evening as they take on the 5-22 Wizards. The odds are in Detroit’s favor to take this to five as the Pistons have won their last seven games and eight of their last nine against Washington.

  • The good: The Pistons are coming off a nice win on Friday night and finally looking like they are enjoying themselves on court.
  • The bad:The Wizards.
  • Who to watch:Brandon Knight, Moose Monroe and Jonas Jerebko for Detroit. JaVale McGee a Michigan native, is coming off a season high 24 on Friday, Nick Young and John Wall for the Wizards.
  • The unknown: Will the Pistons be able come out strong and take control of the game, or will this one be a battle? Wall vs. Night.

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Tip off is at 6:00 pm and will be broadcast on Fox Sports. If you can’t catch the game on TV, catch it on the radio over at 97.1 the Ticket.

The Pistons’ young guns showed off a bit of what Pistons fans should expect in the coming years tonight, as Jonas Jerebko, Greg Monroe, and Brandon Knight lead the Pistons to their first win in 5 games.  While Charlotte isn’t exactly a great team, they are a scrappy young team that can put it together occasionally and they do have an exciting young core in guards Kemba Walker and overseas sensation Bismack Biyombo.

  • All Pistons starters were in double figures for scoring with Jonas Jerebko leading the way with 22.  Jerebko scored 12 total points in his previous 3 games.
  • Rookie sensation Brandon Knight finished with a double-double (13 points and 10 rebounds) to go with 4 assists.  The stat line Coach Frank likes most is his 0 turnovers.
  • Former Piston draft pick DJ White finished with 10 points and 6 rebounds off the bench for the Bobcats, in 30 minutes.  (White would look a lot better in a Pistons’ uniform now, considering Walter Sharpe is no longer on the team)
  • Remember Tyrus Thomas?  The guy the Bulls traded LaMarcus Aldridge for?  He’s still in Charlotte and had 10 points and 7 rebounds.
  • Aside from the Wizards roster, I can’t think of another roster that is worse than the Pistons besides Charlotte’s roster.  Charlotte has drafted in the lottery every season they’ve been in existence except for 1.  There is not 1 player on that team that I’d take over the top 7 guys on the Pistons.  (I’d take Biyombo over Charlie Villanueva or Kemba over Bynum but they aren’t in either team’s top 7 players in terms of playing time)
  • Is there a team that people forget about more than Charlotte?
  • Tayshaun Prince took a night off from being the Piston fans’ punching bag, and finished +18 on the night (a team high).
  • The Pistons won the rebounding margin – 46-34.
  • The Pistons had a a 2:1 assist to turnover ratio on the night – in recent years these types of numbers would guarantee a Piston win.
  • Brandon Knight lead all rebounders with 10.
  • Jonas Jerebko was the high scorer for the game with 22 points.
  • DJ Augustin lead all players in assists with 13.
  • Bismack Biyombo blocked 5 shots – the Pistons had 6 blocks total.
  • Ben Gordon and Gerald Henderson got into a bit of a scrap – they both received technical fouls in the 3rd quarter.
  • Charlotte falls to 2-10 on the season and Detroit improves to 3-9.

Highlights via Pistons.com

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Detroit heads home now to face the upstart Golden State Warriors and former Pistons great Kwame Brown.

Charlie Villanueva continues to sit out because of a lingering ankle injury.  It is not known when the former UCONN star will be available for the Pistons, who will continue to remain shorthanded in the frontcourt in his absence.  It is also not known what kind of shape Villanueva will be in once he is available for the Pistons.  Charlie V has often been criticized for being “soft” both from his lack of ability playing D on the block, and for his muscular definition (or lack thereof).  Villanueva may be feeling the pressure to come back sooner, rather than later, because of the looming amnesty clause that the Pistons held onto coming into the season.

Greg Monroe has made the most of his time on the floor by putting up All Star numbers in the first 12 games of the season (17 and 9) all while playing solid defense.  Monroe, who has turned out to be one of the better players from last year’s 1st round draft class, has benefited from increased playing time.  It is almost a guarantee that both Greg Monroe and Jonas Jerebko will be virtual locks for the Sophomore team during All Star weekend, but Monroe has to have the All Star game in the back of his mind right now.

Today was the first day that players could officially re-sign with their teams after ratifying the latest Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) agreed to a little over a week ago to end the NBA Lockout.  Today was also really the first day that new Pistons owner Tom Gores’ staff could get to work evaluating the talent that is already on the roster, and evaluating the available talent in the free agent market.

Yesterday, in a bit of a surprise move, Tayshaun Prince and the Pistons agreed in principle to a 4 year, $27 million dollar deal.  The Pistons, who drafted 3 small forwards inRip Hamilton the 2009 NBA Draft and 1 small forward in the 2011 NBA Draft, brought back an aging Prince who has seen his statistics drastically decline in recent years to compete with Austin Daye and Jonas Jerebko for playing time (DaJuan Summers was not brought back, and Kyle Singler has decided to stay overseas this season and is playing well).

Today started off rather dull, the Pistons announced the signings of 1st round pick Brandon Knight and 2nd round pick Vernon Macklin.  Signing draft picks is merely a formality, since 1st round pick salaries are slotted and 2nd round picks are often signed to non-guaranteed 1 or 2 year deals.

About 5:30pm today, the Detroit Free Press tweeted that Pistons guard Richard Hamilton had been bought out.  No, the Pistons didn’t use their amnesty clause from the recent CBA, they bought Hamilton out of his contract for the purpose of giving him outright release which will give him the opportunity to sign with the team of his choosing just as any other free agent can.  The Pistons would’ve been on the hook for approximately $20 million dollars had Hamilton not accepted the buyout, and remained in a Pistons uniform this season and next.

Richard Hamilton

Photo Getty Images Editing Need4Sheed.com

Hamilton was bought out of the contract extension that he agreed to on November 3, 2008, at the same time his backcourt mate Chauncey Billups was traded to the Denver Nuggets for Allen Iverson.  The contract extension was for 3 years, $34 million dollars and was seen as something given to Rip to prove his worth to the franchise while they traded his friend Billups out from behind his back.  This move was immediately questioned by the fanbase who saw that this extension would cripple the franchise every year that Hamilton remained on the roster, and it was only made worse by the fact Iverson came in pouted his way off the team while Chauncey Billups helped lead the Denver Nuggets to the Western Conference Finals.

I’ll admit, I never really have respected Rip’s game.  All of the talk about how he was well conditioned and modeled his game after Reggie Miller couldn’t make up for his poor ballhandling ability and penchant for getting technical fouls when the team needed them least.

But I’m not here to kick dirt on his time with the Pistons, he is an accomplished Piston.  He will go down as the all-time leading playoff scorer for a Pistons franchise that has had several great guard tandems, most recently being Isiah Thomas and Joe Dumars.  He was a member of a team that made an improbable championship run to beat the Lakers in 2004 and that took the Spurs to 7 games in 2005.

Hamilton will go down as one of the best all around players in Pistons franchise history.  Hamilton was one of the first players Joe Dumars acquired at the beginning of the early 2000s playoffs and championships run.  He was the centerpiece of the trade before the 2002-2003 season with the Washington Wizards that saw Dumars swindle Michael Jordan out of Hamilton, Hubert Davis and Bobby Simmons while giving up Jerry Stackhouse, Brian Cardinal and Ratko Varda.  In his 2nd year with the team, the team won the NBA Finals for the first time since the 1990-1991 season.  Hamilton was the leading scorer for the team as they beat the Lakers in 5 games, in an emotional series that ended perfectly on the Pistons home floor.

Rip Hamilton with 35 off the bench

Photo/Getty Images editing Need4Sheed.com

That same season in which they won the championship against the Lakers, Hamilton broke out his now famous protective mask that protects his nose from being broken.  His nose had been broken twice that season, and once before in the 2002 season.  He wore the mask as a recommendation from his doctor who warned he would need complete nasal reconstructive surgery if he were to break his nose again.

Hamilton leaves the Pistons having earned $79,744,283 in salary in his 9 years on the team (not including the buyout amount, which is still yet to be announced).  Hamilton leaves the team having played 631 games, and 21,679 minutes in a Pistons uniform.  He is a 3 time All Star as a Piston, from 2006-2008 (as a reserve).

Let’s not forget while we celebrate Rip and his albatross of a contract are gone, how important of a member of those playoff teams he was.  Rip had a great mid range game, he was a pesky defender and could often get in the head of the man defending him by talking trash to him all game.  He stepped up in some of the games the Pistons needed him the most, which made him one of the most clutch players in the NBA from 2004-2007.  Rip is already missed, but the old Rip has been gone since 2008.

It is not Rip’s fault that Dumars signed Ben Gordon and that Rodney Stuckey hasn’t panned out as the team’s point guard of the future.  It’s not Rip’s fault the Allen Iverson experiment didn’t work.  It’s not Rip’s fault that when Chauncey Billups left, his game went with him.  It’s also not Rip’s fault Dumars offered him that 3 year extension that most of us fans hated.

Rip Hamilton

Photo Getty Images Editing Need4Sheed.com

Rip is going to be remembered for his time in a Pistons uniform as being one of the best complimentary players of all time.  Rip is arguably a top 10 Piston of all time, and during the recent success of the organization, he was one of the biggest team players for an organization that built around team and not superstars.

Thank you Rip.  Thank you for playing your heart out, and for going to work night in and night out, no matter how screwy the situation has been in recent years.  You will always be one of our favorite Pistons.

Again – Rodney Stuckey did not play. He was the only player dressed who did not play. LOL

John Wall got his fair share of superstar calls as well, as evidenced by his 14 made free throws compared to the Pistons 14 made as a team. Wall blew by his defender time after time and saw clean looks at the rim all night.

Player of the Night goes to Darko Milicic Mateen Cleaves Rodney White Pistons’ Super Rookie Greg Monroe finished the night with a team high 22 points and 14 rebounds (9 offensive) to go with 4 assists and 4 steals. Monroe, who spent 2 years as Center of the Georgetown Hoyas, missed 2 key free throws with less than 30 seconds left in the game that would’ve tied it up. He had previously been 8 for 8 from the line. Thanks to Wizards announcers Steve Buckhantz and Phil Chenier for jinxing him by mentioning it multiple times, and then laughing about it.

  • The game was played at the Wizards’ pace all night, which plays right into their hands.  They’re not a great shooting team, if they are forced into a halfcourt set each possession, Blatche and McGee are black holes in the post that never pass.
  • Hey JaVale, no need to salute after a dunk
  • John Wall played 46 minutes and scored 26 points to go with 12 assists.  The kid is fast, and showed plenty of signs of why he was considered to be the best player in the draft this past offseason
  • Kuester opted for small ball more often than not last night – there were several times when Monroe was on the floor with Bynum, Hamilton, McGrady and Tay or Austin Daye.  This makes sense because they were playing up and down all night, to the Wizards’ strength
  • Monroe played 43 minutes – because Charlie Villanueva was out with a bad back and Ben Wallace was just not effective in his 8 minutes
  • Former Piston great Richard Hamilton scored 2 points in 20 minutes on the floor, on 1-11 shooting against his former team and former coach, Flip Saunders
  • Does Flip Saunders miss the Pistons? lol
  • I think Detroit could’ve dominated the paint in this one had they fed the ball to Wilcox (lol) and Monroe more.  Watching it, I often saw JaVale McGee and Andray Blatche playing out of position on the defensive end
  • If you can tell me who Mustafa Shakur, Othyus Jeffers and Kevin (Keveen) Seraphin are, you’re a better man/woman than I
  • Since Villanueva was out with a back, Jason Maxiell saw some time on the floor
  • Former Georgetown Hoyas great, DaJuan Summers saw a couple of minutes of action and committed an awful foul on a fast break in his 2 minutes on the floor
  • Austin Daye missed a corner 3 at the end of regulation that would’ve won the game for the Pistons.  Instead, we’re talking about how he played well off the bench in 25 minutes of action, finishing the game with 14 points on 6-10 shooting to go with 6 rebounds
  • Former Pistons great Maurice Evans scored an efficient 20 points for the Wizards.  Evans, who was acquired in the deadline day deal with the Hawks along with Jordan Crawford and a #1 pick, has been a steady option on both ends of the floor for the rebuilding Wizards
  • The game was close throughout the 2nd half after the Pistons and Wizards exchanged 30+ point 1st and 2nd quarters
  • The Pistons had won 8 out of their last 9 games against the Wizards before last night
  • I’m glad I didn’t go to the game, it was honestly a real snoozer just having to watch it on TV
  • There was an odd moment early on in the game when Tracy McGrady approached the free throw line after being hit on the arm.  He tossed the ball back to the ref and said “hold on” as he grimaced in pain as the Pistons called a timeout.  Coming out of the timeout, McGrady was able to shoot the free throw, but he shot it left handed and missed

The Pistons have now lost 32 games on the road, which is 1 more than they lost on the road all of last year.

Oh and hey, Rodney Stuckey didn’t play so… I hope he’s learning his lesson!

Up next for the Mighty Pistons are the New Jersey Nets, at the Palace tonight.  It should be a good game for both teams who are playing out the string, and jockeying for ping pong balls.  By all accounts, the Nets have a “superstar” whereas the Pistons don’t have one so… that makes the Nets the favorite, right?  If you’re a gambling man, Vegas has the Pistons winning by 6.

The 26-50 (hoping for a good lottery position) Detroit Pistons are in Washington to take on the Wizards. Washington is looking for their third consecutive win for the first time in four seasons (ouch).

  • The good: Detroit has taken the last 8 games against Washington.
  • The bad: Both of these teams.
  • The unknown: Kuester or Stuckey?

The Scouting Report via Pistons.com

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Tip off is at 7:00 pm and will be broadcast on Fox Sports Detroit. If you can’t catch the game on TV, follow it live over at NBA.com or on the radio over at 97.1 The Ticket.

Rodney Stuckey was benched in today’s game against the Boston Celtics for refusing to re-enter the game Friday night against the Chicago Bulls.  What else does Stuckey have to do to lose the respect of Pistons fans?  Here he is, in his 4th year in the NBA and still acting like an immature young player in a season where leadership and respect is there for the taking.

I just hope the Pistons can get something for him this offseason when he leaves.  I apologize in advance for not shedding the same virtual tears when Rodney leaves as I did when Chauncey and Stuckey’s draft mate Arron Afflalo left the team. Now Kuester doen’t get a pass either, each one of us has a better chance at winning a million dollars playing blackjack online than John Kuester has of returning to Detroit next season.  Now on to the rest of the team, who are now playing out the string and earning time for next season:

  • The Pistons won the 1st and 4th quarters – but they lost the game in the 3rd by giving up 33 points to the (currently) 2nd seeded Boston Celtics
  • Shaquille O’Neal may have to hang it up this season after limping off badly in today’s game after only 5 minutes on the floor
  • Charlie Villanueva’s numbers are deceiving – sure he had a solid offensive game, but his points were canceled out as he scored 15 and was a team worst -15 on the night
  • Need4Sheed favorite Will Bynum started in place of Tracy McGrady, and ended up with 20 points and only 1 assist.

Photo Getty Images editing Need4Sheed.com

  • Detroit got “Rondo’d” – Rajon Rondo finished with 14 assists and 5 turnovers.
  • I hate to admit it – Boston is pretty deep.  I know it’s hoping a lot that Jermaine O’Neal or Shaquille O’Neal stay healthy enough to give minutes but Baby Davis gives Boston a solid 6th man off the bench.  Delonte West is a solid guard off the bench.  This team can guard just about everyone on the perimeter, except maybe LeBron James – but we’ll see what Pierce and Jeff Green can do this postseason
  • Austin Daye must be in the dog house somewhat – either that, or he’s not worth giving much time on the floor at this point.  There’s really no excuse for him to play only 15 minutes when Prince and Rip play 30+
  • Super rookie Rodney White Greg Monroe had a down night – 11 points and 5 rebounds to go with a tough matchup all night – KG and Baby Davis
  • Hell, with all the turmoil going on on the Pistons sideline even Jason Maxiell saw some decent run in today’s game.  My how far this team has fallen in his time on the roster.
  • Pistons coach JKIAFI John Kuester referred to Stuckey’s benching as a “setback” in his “growth process” – aka “Stuckey is still immature, even in his 4th year in the league.  On a team dying for a leader to step up.”

Stuckey: “Mentally, mentally, I’m mentally drained. Hopefully I can get through these six games and we’ll see what happens next year.”  Via The Detroit News

Up next on “As The World Turns” the Pistons schedule are the young and peppy Wizards lead by newcomers Jordan Crawford and John Wall.  Detroit will have their hands full if Ben Wallace does not play again because of the size the Wizards have on their front line with Andray Blatche and JaVale McGee.

I usually attend the Wizards game when the Pistons are town but this year, I’m going to save my money and watch it on TV.  Stay tuned this week as rumor has it Natalie and I are going to pump out another podcast – I will be there ready to apologize to you all for saying the Pistons would go 9-3 to close out the season and they would make the playoffs.  I’m sure we’ll also continue to talk about Rodney Stuckey, Coach Kuester, how Natalie’s dog saved her life, and more!

In a game that featured little defense – the Pistons were able to use a hot shooting 1st quarter to propel them to victory over the Washington Wizards at The Palace, 113-102.  7 Pistons players scored in double digits as the Pistons lead for the entire game.  While it was a fun game to watch for the high scoring, it’s definitely not the kind of basketball the old school Piston fans are used to seeing (or enjoying).

Super-rookie John Wall scored 24 points (including 12-13 from the free throw line) to go along with 7 assists and 5 rebounds (with 4 turnovers).  Slam dunk contest finalist JaVale McGee finished with 12 points and 2 rebounds, after scoring 20 points and having 16 rebounds in the last matchup in November.

Let’s look at the highlights, shall we?:

Tayshaun Prince

Photo/Allen Einstein/Getty Images editing Need4Sheed.com

  • Austin Daye, described by many as the player with the best jumpshot in last year’s NBA Draft, scored an efficient 12 points in 18 minutes off the bench to go along with 5 rebounds and 2 blocked shots.  Daye has really shown signs of improvement as the season has worn on, and it’ll nice to see what he can contribute as a starter, next season.
  • Need4Sheed fan favorite, Rodney Stuckey, had a near triple double and a +22 +/- for the Pistons.  Stuckey finished with 19 points, 9 assists and 7 rebounds.  In the words of Junior – “take that, Boney”
  • Wow – Detroit won rebounding matchup 45-29.  To be honest, if I’m a Wizard fan that total disgusts me.  The Wizards have 2 guys in the starting lineup who had a height advantage over the entire Pistons roster.  The Wizards are a young team that need to prove they’re ready for the big time.
  • LOL @ Nick Young’s hair
  • I don’t know about you but, Trevor Booker reminds me of a young Jason Maxiell.  Booker is a feisty post player, in his 1st year from Clemson.
  • Pistons super rookie Greg Monroe contributed with 12 points and 7 rebounds in 21 minutes.
  • Player of the night: Tayshaun Prince with 20 points on 10-19 shooting and the biggest poster of the year.
  • Tayshaun Prince DUNK and HL’s

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Video courtesy of the NBA and the Detroit Pistons

  • Richard Hamilton received the largest ovation on the evening when he checked in late in the 1st quarter

Need4Sheed’s thoughts and prayers go out to former Pistons coach Flip Saunders and his family on the loss of Saunders’ mother.  We may talk bad about Saunders occasionally, but he is a good man and helped this team win many games.  Saunders was not with the team tonight – he was in Cleveland with his family.

The Pistons now must pack their bags and head out for a 3 game road trip to face off against the San Antonio Spurs, Oklahoma City Thunder and Denver Nuggets.  It’s not going to be an easy trip, but the Pistons got off on the right start with a win tonight.

The 22-41 Pistons come are back from their three day break to try to regroup for a Sunday evening game at the Palace against the 16-45 Wizards.

Charlie V on the remaining games: “Are we going to have a terrible season or are we all going to come together and make a push? The guys decided we’re going to make a push,”

We’re holding you to that Charlie.

  • The good: The Pistons have won six consecutive home matchups with the Wizards, who are an NBA worst 1-28 on the road.
  • The bad: The Pistons are 5 1/2 games behind eighth-place Indiana in the Eastern Conference.
  • The unknown: Who’s going to play and for how long.

Young Austin Daye is coming off a career high game. If you though he looked young on court for Detroit, look at this interview I dug up on YouTube.

Get Pistons tickets for as low as $4 to see the Pistons play John Wall and the Wizards.

Tip off is at 6:00 pm and will be broadcast on Fox Sports Detroit. If you can’t catch the game on TV, follow it live over at NBA.com or on the radio over at 97.1 The Ticket.

Leave your thoughts in the comments or Chat Live with your fellow Pistons fans during the game.

It wasn’t pretty at times.  The Pistons still have their issues against teams with size, as evidenced by JaVale McGee’s 20 point/16 rebound and Andray Blatche’s 20 point/8 rebound lines, but they were able to call on some familiar faces for the win tonight in front of 13k+ fans at the Palace.

The game didn’t really get good until overtime when Richard Hamilton turned back the clock and reminded us of why he gets paid the big bucks.  Hamilton, who scored 12 points for the Pistons in overtime, finished the night with 27 points and had this to say after the game:

“I still enjoy playing this game, and I’m always going to work hard out there,” said Hamilton, who came into the night averaging just 12.1 points. “When they need me, like they did tonight, I’m going to be ready.”

Let’s look at the re-cap shall we?:

  • Charlie Villanueva has arguably not only his best game of the season, but possibly his best game as a Piston: 25 points and 11 rebounds on 11/16 from the field, including 4/6 from 3.   He also provided 11 rebounds.
Charlie Villanueva

Photo/Getty Images editing Need4Sheed.com

  • Gilbert Arenas had 19 points and 16 assists for the Wizards.
  • 2010 #1 overall draft pick John Wall did not play for the Wizards.
  • Jason Maxiell was working hard all night on the glass and in the post for the Pistons – he scored 14 points and had 5 rebounds.
  • Austin Daye did not play.  Why?
  • Greg Monroe played limited minutes, and was a team worst -11 in +/-.
  • Nick Young scored 18 points off the bench for the Wizards.
  • 5 players in double figures for both teams.
  • Detroit outrebounded Washington 44-41.
  • Tayshaun Prince had an off night shooting (3-13 from the field) but he did help out with 6 assists and 7 rebounds to go with 7 points.
  • Rodney Stuckey provided a spark with 15 points and 7 assists.
  • DaJuan Summers, Chris Wilcox, Jonas Jerebko and Terrico White were inactive for the game.
  • Frozen turkeys were dribbling juice on the court during a “frozen turkey giveaway” promotion, therefore the promotion was cut short early.  Pistons fans hoping for a free turkey went home disappointed.
  • JaVale McGee, one of the most athletic big men in the NBA, flashed a couple of highlight reel worthy plays including a handful of nice putback dunks.

The Pistons needed this win tonight before they head into a tough stretch of games to close out November.  Now they head to Dallas to face Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday before heading to Memphis to play the Grizzlies and the back end of a back to back.

The Pistons are in Toledo tonight to take on John Wall and the Washington Wizards tonight. This will be a treat for the tons of Pistons fans that live in the Toledo area. This is another pre-season game that you won’t see on TV, but you can follow it on NBA.com or listen to the radio broadcast over at 97.1 The Ticket. Tip off is at 7pm and you may or may not be able to catch this one ONLINE.