Pistons youth make a statement in LA

by | Nov 17, 2007 | 34 comments

Despite the Pistons 103 – 91 loss in LA to the Lakers, this was a great game to watch. Detroit, who was again without Chauncey Billups and Antonio McDyess, dug themselves in a whole early in the first quarter. This time it was the Pistons youth and their defense that kept them in the game.

Key Points:

  • Early foul trouble for Jason Maxiell had him on the floor just 22 minutes even though he started in place of McDyess. He finished the game with 9 points, 4 boards and a blocked shot.
  • Arron Afflalo did a heck of a job defending Kobe (his idol).
  • It wasn’t Kobe who was a factor in this one, in fact he couldn’t buy a basket until late in the fourth. He wen 6-for-19 for the game.
  • Rip Hamilton, who was frustrated by the way the calls were going (clearly in Bryant’s favor) got called for a technical foul. Who would have though he’d get one before our man Sheed.
  • Best defensive effort in ages, the Pistons were in this one because of D.
  • Foul trouble and the fact we didn’t have the services of CB or AM, the youngsters got considerable time on the floor and did not dissapoint.
  • Home town boy Amir Johnson was great on the defensive end. He blocked 4 shots, grabbed 7 boards, with 2 assists a steal and one point.
Amir Johnson
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  • The future is now.
  • The Pistons 17 turnovers killed them. Boy do we miss Chauncey. A lot of it had to do with sloppy passing. Those turnovers led to 22 Laker points.
  • Look, I don’t know what Kobe was saying at the end of the game when he was close to the scorers table but whatever it was George Blaha took offense to it. He made it sound like he was being a selfish jerk without actually saying it. But in true Blaha fashion he then gave him a compliment. Sorry to those of you who had to watch the ESPN broadcast.
  • Many ill advised shots from Rip and Flip Murray who looked out of their respective games. Flip was 6-for-18 on the night while Rip was 6-for-13.
  • Flip….please look for someone else who is open and quit dribbling away the shot clock. We know you’re not a point guard but you have to take on the roll when your playing one. Sometimes its not all about you.
  • If this happened during the Bad Boys Era, Mahorn, Laimbeer or Rodman would have made sure he was on the floor the next time down the court.
  • Jordan Farmar was the key to the Lakers win.
  • Jarvis Hayes couldn’t miss, he was 6-for-9 for 13 points. Is there a reason he stopped getting minutes>
  • Can you say Facial Kobe? Nice Jason!
Jason Maxiell Posterizes Kobe
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  • Maxi has really been working on his free throws, he was 7-for-8 from the line. He’s almost money when the game’s on the line.
  • Tay played well putting up 16 with 9 boards a steal and 3 assists in front of his hometown crowd.
  • Afflalo really does remind me of Joe D.
  • Funny that 13 of the 17 turnovers came from the starting 5.
  • I’m sorry but Lindsey Hunter looked like a train wreck. Three turnovers in 7 minutes.
  • Sheed wasn’t his dominant self, he scored 13 with 8 boards, but I did get a better look at his new model AF1’s. Gotta love the big Sheed logo, the pair he wore the other day were blue.
Sheed Nike Air Force 1's
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  • Had it not been for the youngsters, the Pistons may have gotten blown out.
  • Surprised they didn’t pull this one out, especially when they went up 6 in the fourth.
  • Rebounding war won 48-45. Twenty three of the Lakers 45 rebounds were offensive.
  • Could Cheikh Samb have ever made a better statement in his first NBA game? It was a block party when Samb was on the floor. He finished the game with 2 points 2 blocks (though he should have been credited with 3) and 4 boards in almost 15 minutes.
Cheikh Samb
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  • Can you ever characterize a loss as a good loss? If so I think this was. We really saw that we can count on the youngsters to play well.
  • I am not ready to give Flip accolades for playing the bench, I think he was forced to and you know……they delivered. Lesson learned Mr. Saunders (or so we hope).
  • Was anybody else ok with this loss? Don’t get me wrong, I would have loved to win, especially with the way Kobe was acting late in the game but the way our youth played jut gave me a good feeling when it was all said and done.
  • Super Dupe must be Super bummed right now, everyone played except him.
  • I can’t wait for Stuckey’s return.
  • Next up the Kings Sunday night, if the Pistons win they leave the west coast 3-for-5 which isn’t that bad.


  1. Anonymous

    thought id repost this in the with the right post::

    wow you gotta admit, despite the loss, pistons tore that uppp ! especially without their capitawnnnn billups! haha.. no really though i thought rip gave kobe a run for his money he was getting soo tired and aggrivated trying to catch up with rip haha.. and i was getting tired just watching rip run around .. he has so much energy.. hes amazing!

    and i doooooo looove our roooks to death this seasonn!! and amir! i just wish stuckey could play already!

    but all the same… get well soon chauncey! cause i miss you on the court and im sure the pistons do tooo! we’re not whole without the whole team and our captain!

  2. Anonymous

    we could have pulled out a win with the way the yougsters were playing but they were still impressive.

    so chauncey had to sit in the locker room because he didn’t have a jacket to wear on the bench. could no one loan him one?

  3. kyle c.

    did anyone else notice that the refs were terrible?
    The one where Maurice Evans had the put back dunk looked totally like over the back. Then he jumped up and down staring at Rip.
    Also when the Lakers were about to throw the ball out of bounds but it hit the ref.

  4. Steve

    I would indeed classify this as a “good win” if there is such a thing… and I think there is. We got to see – correction, Mr. Saunders and Joe D got to see – what the youngsters could do and they were all solid. It has to give them confidence, make the starters feel better about their backups, and help deepen the bench for the season and playoffs.

  5. TDP

    I think the Pistons got hosed. That four-possession stretch in which the Lakers went up 93-83 was some of the worst officiating I’d ever seen. The reach-in foul failed to exist – Farmar was all over everybody. AND… to top it off that dipshit official basically gave L.A. a bunny when he had that errant pass bounce off of him and back on to the court! God, that pissed me off. The young guys played so well, but man… 2 starters out and playing against that sort of home-court advantage. 41 points given up in the fourth quarter made me want to puke. I wasn’t going to be surprised if they lost because of being short-handed, but that 3rd quarter made me think it was theirs.

  6. gMac

    I’m so glad Flip played our young guys all the way to Samb. Since Nazi supposedly read this blog. I hope I can make our team better by saying the following.
    Nazr is the most selfish player on our team. He has no offensive skills to demand the ball in the post. Once the ball goes in, he thinks he’s Tim Duncan, takes every shot. It disrupts our offense. It’s a waste of possession. He’s so stupid! No basketball IQ at all. That’s ok, if you are like Jason Colins, Troy Muffy. But Nazi doesn’t understand his role. You are not good enough to take every freaking shot passed to you!!! Get your own damn rebound…

    There is a reason Popvich didn’t play you. Because beside the fact you have no talent or athleticism, you are so selfish not so bright. It doesn’t fit a team like Spurs or the Pistons. Up until now I’m okay with Nazi playing some minutes, because Billups and Rip never gives him the ball. But the problem came lately when Affalo and some of our young guys are playing with him. They think they have to pass him the ball just because he’s asking for it like he’s Shaq or Duncan. Just because he’s older doesn’t mean he’s a better option. Pass to the interior is necessary in an offense, but pass to Nazr is like sending him to a double team by default.(because he takes as long as he wants to get his OWN shots off. That jumper is so ugly BTW).
    I’m so glad Flip didn’t play him much yesterday, hopefully not only because he couldn’t run with the young guys on lakers team. And last night’s game showed that Amir is so much more effective than Nazr. We don’t need selfish low IQ players, we want people who brings energy and athleticism. So Nazi , if you are reading this. You are in the same class of Jason Colins, Eric Dampier and Kwame Brown. But they are more effective than you, because they understand their roles. Please for the sake of our team, don’t take every single shot past to you.

  7. Dominic

    I agree the refs did indeed have their heads in their asses this game, what I love is when Sheed got called for an invisible “push” early in the game, Blaha said “Now that’s a cheap call, (name of referee) a very cheap call”

  8. Dominic

    I loved seing Samb on the floor as well, he was on a mission to touch the ball every possesion, offense and defense, whether it wsa blocking shots, or grabbing rbounds, or tipping it to another player for the rebound he was everywhere, he may be NBA ready faster than we thought. I’m not saying this year, but in the next 2 or 3 he’ll probably get a spot. I think he hustled so hard cuz he knew he would not get many more oppurtunities, good for you Flip for playing him!

  9. Anonymous

    i ♥ blaha

  10. Anonymous

    what did blaha say?

  11. Natalie

    I will check the tape and give you the quote of exactly what he said when I get a chance tomorrow.

  12. Jason

    is there any video of the blaha/kobe thing?? i fell asleep and didnt catch the 4th…

  13. Sable

    I actually did enjoy this game, despite the loss. I think Rip was pressing too much, which he sometimes does anyway. LB used to tell him to slow down and he would respond.

    I would rather see Tayshaun handling the ball against a press. He has better point guard instincts than Murray who can handle the ball, but is more of a 2 guard with an attack/scoring mentality.

    There is one thing that concerns me. You have to give the Lakers credit for their defensive intensity in the 4th quarter. It looked like playoff intensity, but that is the concern. In the playoffs, our offense has faltered because of the amped defensive intensity we face. It throws off our offensive rhythm. For times like these, we need simpler but dependable offensive sets which allow us to get a shot off, but also allow us to get back on defense.

    Now for the good. I think we win this game if Chuancey plays. Point guard play killed us against the press.

    Afflalo and Hayes looked good. I too am surprised we didn’t see more of them. They were playing Flip Murray alot with Billups out but he had a subpar game. The Lakers were playing big at the 3, so let Tayshaun bring the ball up and let Fflalo and Hayes get some time at the guard spots. Brian Cook and Lamar Odom aren’t used to having to shadow someone bringing the ball up and if they try and put a guard on Tay, you let him take them down into the post.

    Amir Johnson looked solid, but he looked better and better the more he was out there. He had a few lapses defensively, like giving his man an offensive rebound by letting himself get pushed under the basket and he was also late on a show during a pick and roll that wound up as a Lakers three ball. Still, I loved the toughness he showed in this game, fighting off Lakers to snatch defensive rebounds.

    Then there was Samb. I was surprised we gave him a roster spot this year. I thought he’d need one more year of seasoning in Europe. I was surprised to see him play this game as well. I didn’t think we’d see him anywhere but in the D-League. Boy was I pleasantly surprised. Watching him play in the summer league, I knew he had a nice jumper. I know he was pretty gifted blocking shots, but he was always two steps slow on defense, as far as providing help and defensive rotations. Seems he picked that up quick. He runs the floor well too. I don’t know how he’d finish on the break, but it would at least force opposing centers to sprint up and down the court chasing him.

    Samb and Amir together make for an intimidating shot blocking front line. Living in LA, I’ve seen Bynum get his shots off at will because of his length, but these guys gave Bynum fits for the first time this season. If they can just seal the deal and grab the defensive rebound without giving up offensive rebounds, I think you could start giving them alot more minutes.

  14. Richie

    I was going to comment about how terrible that errant pass off the ref that turned into an ‘assist’ for the lakers, or on how impressed I was by Amir and Samb, but frankly, Gmac’s comments about Nazr need to be addressed.

    Firstly, yes this is a blog and we speak about the skills of our players in respect to our expectations for them as professional athletes. However, Gmac, you’ve called out Nazr and made your comment personal. Even if he does read your comment, he’s too professional to respond, so I’m going to speak in his defence.

    Nazr has a Championship ring, and not just because he sat on a championship bench, but because he played at that level with players on that level the same year that Detroit lost to his team in the finals.

    Nazr isn’t our best big man, but he’s not the evil selfish ball hog that you’re trying to call him. He’s not the best passer in the world but heck, he is a center. He doesn’t play that often (hardly at all last season) and when he does he does the best he can. His job is difficult, with the inconsistant minutes, high expectations and scant opportunities, so how about you get off his back and let him do his job the best he can?

  15. Mark

    I am one of those unfortunate souls who had to watch the ESPN broadcast. It’s better without the sound, because it seems like the commentators are just cheerleading for the Lakers. It was barely mentioned that we were without Billups and McDyess. But they were sure to talk about what an “impressive” win it was for the Lakers. Never any respect for Detroit. Not the team, not the city, and because of that, not the fans.

  16. Anonymous

    ^^thats why i love blaha.. hes always showing love for detroit!! one of the only people too :/

  17. Anonymous

    any news on those sheeds nate? they look like hot stuff, i ve been looking 4 a p[air of high top sheeds for so loooooooong i hope they release these bad boys

  18. Anonymous

    Why is everyone making excuses for the starters, you guys just saw what’s going to happen in the playoffs, get surprised and lose.

    If this playoff type game didn’t get Rasheed into the game, really does anything at all motivate Sheed anymore, and these Pistons are not good passers, they really don’t make a lot of passes besides to a post man or around the perimeter

  19. Anonymous

    Why was Rip guarding Kobe? Isn’t that usually Tayshaun’s job since the long arms bother him more???
    Rip needs to stop letting the refs bother him, if he keeps it up, it will effect his game this season.

    I guess the refs had money on the Lakers winning because that “ball off the ref” should have ended the play and made them start over or something, who did they credit the assist to, that ref? too many lopsided calls.

    Blaha is a gentleman, if I was sitting there I would have said,
    “Hey Rapist, why don’t you STFU, the refs were giving you most of the calls tonight, you idiot”.

  20. Amanda

    Thank you Richie!

    I was about to respond to gmac’s post as soon as I read it but decided to proceed reading the rest of the posts to see if anybody called him on the shit he said. You pretty much read my mind.

    I would like to add, however, that I hope you, gmac, are only misspelling his name. It’s N-A-Z-R. If you know this, and are spelling it N-A-Z-I on purpose, I would suggest you stop. That word can be very offensive to people who visit this site. Just a thought…

  21. Amanda

    And about the game:

    Loved it! I would have loved it more had it been a win, but I enjoyed Kobe’s antics and Blaha’s responses to them. George had me laughing out loud. And what the shit happened to Maurice Evans? He seems like an on-court asshole now. He never would have acted that way in Detroit. I guess that’s what happens to you when you spend too much time around Mr. All-Flash-And-No-Class.

    Samb was amazing! He’s gonna tear the D-League up, wreaking havoc in the post and smoothly knocking down those jumpers. Wow. I was impressed.

  22. Anonymous

    Just so everyone knows on Espn the guy analysing the game was Jon Barry and for those of you who don’t remember he was a Pistons a couple years ago. And he was impartial yet very nice so get off espn it was fun to watch on espn

    But that was exactly why i was mad Samb wasn’t getting any time. Blocks like crazy

  23. Steve

    I actually went to this game in LA. Rip and Kobe were REALLY going at it. Even at the end of the game they were trash talking the crap out of eachother.

    I can’t DISAGREE MORE about the Detroit bench playing well. I know we ALL want to think we have a good bench this year but we lost this game BECAUSE of horrible bench defense. Cheikh Samb had NO idea what he was doing on there on defense.

    We lost the 3rd quarter lead in SECONDS because the bench was all out on the floor playing very weak defense. Tons of open 3’s

  24. Richie

    I don’t know what was wrong with Mo Evans. I liked him when he was in D-town, felt bad about us losing him. When I saw his behavior yesterday I was discusted. When he was a rook I could tell he had a lot of potential, but it’s a shame to see him go down that Kobe road.

    Was anyone else discusted by Kobe’s hyper enthusiastic celebration when they gave Rip offensive fouls?

    Calling an offensive foul on Flip Murray when kobe was grinding against him after picking up his dribble didn’t make much sense either. Oh well, I suppose that when you’re acclaimed as the best player in the world and you shoot 33% with only 4 rebounds against a team missing two starters led by it’s 3rd option point gaurd, you have to celebrate whever you can!

  25. Richie

    PS- The Lions and the Pistons have the exact same reccord for the next 13 hours!

  26. Sable

    Steve, whether you went to the game or not, it’s still the same game we saw on TV. Yes, there were defensive lapses by the young guys, but they more than made up for it with their energy. The starters just didn’t have it today and I chalk that up to some tough games on this road trip. Sheed was dead tired in the Golden State game so I expected it to carry over to this game. As I’ve stated before, it was the turnovers by the point guards that failed us. They scored easy baskets off transition due to untimely turnovers. That’s not bad defense, that’s bad point guard play. And I agree with the post about Nazr. He’s played well this season. I personally don’t want to see him go. Who else out there is better? He’s a solid guy to have on your bench to go against the beefier centers in the league.

  27. Julius

    There are plenty of losses I am okay with and even bad performances. In general I think people put too much stock on winning winning winning, as though a season is a total waste if your team doesn’t go all the way to the end and bring home the trophy. Seriously though, we have had great seasons with the pistons and only actually won once (which is more than most teams can even say). So I’d love to see more people okay with good losses and see the game for a game and entertainment rather than basing everything solely on the end result.

  28. Richie

    Amen, Julius!

  29. SAMMI!


    when is chauncey coming back?!??

    i must see him i’ll be in detroit this week and going to the game on friday.

    i live in cali and its not that often i get to see the pistons!

    is it safe to say he’ll be back by friday?!

    and mcdyess too

  30. Anonymous

    ^Sammi, chances are that Chauncey will be back, and maybe Mcdyess too. I’ll also be at the game =]

  31. Anonymous

    Kobe is a overgrown full- of-himself wunderkind.He’s actually sort of funny!

    Get over yourself kobe darling,lifes sort grow up!

  32. SAMMI

    thanks anonymous!

    i need infooo bout chauncey!

  33. gMac

    @amanda & Richie. I mis-spelled his name. Coz Blaha always calls him ‘Nazee’.
    I’m not saying we lost a game because of Nazr. The regular season really don’t mean to much to me at all. I would rather take loses like this game to see some of our young players.
    But back to Nazr,I agree he fills up the position just fine when our other bigs have to sit. But seriously, just count the times when Nazr is down the post. Count how many times he will take a shot when he gets it. And go ask yourself how many of those shots are good shots. It’s like giving Ben the ball down low. Except Ben sometimes passes it up. Nazr is good at making put backs off the glass than Ben though.
    He’s always asking for the ball, which is a good thing, it makes the defender work. But just watch the game. When Chauncy and Rip are in the game , they almost never give him the ball, regardless how hard he’s asking for it. I think that alone speaks volume. Only young guys like Affalo gives him the ball.
    SO SEE IF FOR YOURSELVES. I’m not calling him out because he ‘s not a good rebounder or can’t seems to get any lose ball. Those are things he can’t improve anymore. But at least don’t be a one dimensional player, pass the ball, look for the open man because almost all his shots are pretty ugly and low percentage.
    Darko got a ring with us sitting on the bench? So him getting a ring with Spurs means nothing. In fact he didn’t play much at all that year. You think a coach like Popvich knows better…
    Both Flip Murry and Nazr had to deal with limited minutes. Flip used to be a much more selfish player. But he adjusted very well. Same just can’t be said about Nazr. Just get some rebound, score some put backs. Make your post up move only when you have a good percentage shot (pretty much a layup type).
    The ball goes in to Nazr, it never comes out. (unless he reads this blog and thinks I’m right)

  34. Anonymous

    The ESPN announcers were horrible. They kept saying that Afflalo was Detroit’s 1st round pick in the draft and kept wanking off to how good the Celtics are.


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