A Trip to Remember – Europe to Detroit

by | Jan 30, 2009 | 17 comments

I take things for granted, we all do. No matter if it’s something big or very small, it’s human nature. I am not going to get into everything I am thankful for, but tell you that after hearing Vladan and Martin’s story I realized I have taken Deeetroit Basketball for granted for most of my life.

I get a ton of emails from readers of the site and it’s very rare that they don’t make me smile, so when I read Vladan’s email a few months back it made me more than just smile….it made me realize how lucky most of us are.

We are from Austria (Europe) and we are big Pistons fans, at least we
Keep telling this to ourselves when it’s 2 AM here and the game is just
About to start. It’s not easy being a Pistons fan in Europe.Β  As you can imagine, there is hardly any NBA basketball on TV and you can only watch League Pass games sometimes. Have you ever watched a game with Chinese commentary (because there were no other possibilities)?
You should try this. It really makes you appreciate the real deal.

Well, we’ve been talking for years about going to Detroit to watch a few games of our favorite team, get a feel for the town we feel so connected to even without ever really being there and see how life is like in Motown.

We are part-time working students so we had to save money for a while to make this happen…and we finally decided we will go on this trip.

Three good home games in a row (Boston, Cleveland, Miami).

You probably are asking yourself two questions right now.
1.) Why are two students from Europe, who have never been to Detroit, Pistons fans?
2.) Why are we telling this to you?

Well, the first question is easy.

Team basketball and they have a certain vibe to them. Just the way they behave and their attitude separate makes them stand out above the rest.

The answer to the second question will take a bit longer:

We have booked our flights, hotel and stuff like this. We know how we will get there and we’ve read about a few things worth sightseeing, but we don’t know obvious stuff – obvious to you, but not nearly well known enough for us Maybe you can give us some tips about where to go/where NOT to
We look forward to soaking in as much as we can.

I don’t know how early you plan the need4sheed “meetings”, but if it
Is in the same time when we are in Detroit, we would definitely join you.
That would be pretty cool.

Any information/tips/help would be appreciated,
Best regards
Vladan & Martin

Well Vladan and Martin Arrived yesterday! And guess what, they just happened to be in town when Need4Sheed is having one of our “gatherings.”

We arrived in Detroit a few hours ago. Flight was good (but a bit long, tho – total flight and waiting time was about 15-16 hours). When we arrived at our hotel, we didn’t like it, but that was probably because we were pretty tired. Now that we found out we have Digital Cable and High Speed Internet, we are pretty happy again.

Anyway, we had time to explore the city a bit – we’ve been to Greektown and some streets around our hotel. We had dinner at “Coach’s Corner” and watched the 1st half of the Cavaliers – Magic game on TNT. That isn’t even remotely possible in Austria. We really enjoyed it even tho we were the only people there except for the waitress. I guess that is because it is pretty cold and because the Red Wings play tonight, but who knows.

Our cab driver told us everything we need to know about the town…but I’m not sure he knows what he is talking about. He thinks Shaq is playing for Miami and that the Lions actually won a game or two this season…crazy. He was very nice tho.Β  He told us about the city’s problems and it is pretty depressing. Just sad to hear how people struggle right now in Motown. I hope it will get better soon.

We’ll be at the Palace tomorrow for the Celtics game as you already know.

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Well I’m going to see Vladan and Martin in a couple of days, in fact I will be lucky enough to enjoy the game (and a little more) with them.

Now I’m reaching out to you for them….
Give them some tips on where and where not to go while in Town…
Remember, they are limited when it comes to transportation.
Help them get the best out of their time in The D, and let’s hope our Pistons don’t disappoint some loyal fans from across the globe who saved up for longer than we can imagine to see them play!


  1. Vanalope

    This is an awesome post. I hope they have a really good time, despite how this season is going I’m sure this will be a trip to remember for them. There’s nothing like a Pistons game at the Palace!

    I’m not from Detroit either but I totally relate to why they became Pistons fans.

    Mach spass Vladan und Martin!

  2. Josh

    If they have been down in greek town they have the ability to go downtown so I would recommend going down by Ford field, Commerica park, maybe check out if they have any concerts going on in or around the state theater. If you enjoy lamb chops and don’t mind spending about $30 for dinner I recommend making one more stop in greek town at pegasis(not sure on that spelling). You could even cross the river and check out Windsor.

  3. The Business

    When your down town go to The Park Bar or Centaur.

    Park bars address is 2040 Park Ave Detroit, MI 48226
    If you see a guy with sandy blond hair his name is Jerry and he runs the place. Great Guy.

    Centaur bar is more of an upscale place but it does have free pool and a clean environment, its just north of Park Bar.


  4. Clinton

    LOL Sorry about one of the worst winters in michigans history should of came later in the year to enjoy it more =)

  5. Donnie Brasco

    If you are in Detroit, you have to get a Coney Dog. Just ask a cab driver for the clostest Coney Island and get two coney dogs and an order of coney fries!

  6. Noa Daniely

    same story here in Israel. I know how difficult is to be a pistons fan where you need to wake up at 2:00 AM to see a game, and even not on TV, on the computer because the Israeli sports channels don’t have any boradcast.
    well, I’ve been in Detroit and I’ve flewn 13 hours to the USA, and I had so much fun. I’m sure that you will have good times there.

    So have fun πŸ™‚

  7. DetroitGirl4life

    hey ! welcome to detroit!
    all i have 2 say is that I LOVE DETROIT!! im only 16 and each day i grow to love my city everyday. Sry, but this is a very bad time to be around,lol i mean this is one of the worst winters but its still stuff to do. I would definitely go get some coney dogs because thats part of what Detroit is known for. Yeah its sad that Detroit is suffering from this economy and by some corrupt leaders. But the one thing about Detroit that is so special 2 me is that this is home and that we have the most loyal and strong minded people on earth. We as a city have hope and love the city so much we cant wait to see a turn around. im a proud young (16 yrs old) native Detroit who is from Michigan and has lived i Michigan throughout my life and i freakin love Michigan with all my heart…so enjoy your time here and just have fun :D:D

  8. Amer ican Prince

    Well if you’re a fan of people like Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, The Jackson 5, Temptations, Supremes, or anyone from those times, you might consider the motown museum Hitsville USA.

    Also the Joe Louis fist is an big awesome piece of art, it is pretty famous in the D. It’s fun to take a picture pretending you just got punched. Though there are probably a lot more places that have more to offer than a fist. But if you do have the time check it out.

    The thing about the D it has such a diversity of things to do it’s crazy from jazz and night clubs, to restaurants, to sports stadiums, to everything in between.

    I wanna say what up to my people all over the world. To Vladan and Martin to Noa over in Israel to everybody. Pistons

  9. Belal

    Detroit has the best gyros in the united states of america. get one. or two.

  10. David Wieme

    Natalie, I’m happy to have you and some of the other Need4Sheed-ers out against Miami next week. Looking forward to showing our guests from Austria a great time at The Palace. Make sure they have their cameras charged up and plenty of space….

    Dave Wieme
    Detroit Pistons
    FOTN (Friend of the Need)

  11. millertime

    Take a ride on the people mover, go to fishbones for dinner one night, stop by as many random bars as possible downtown. Go to The Post, it is right across the street from the palace and is always a fun spot after the game. While at the game tonight come into the Canadian Club terrance and get a drink at the bar. Slipknot is playing at the palace tomorrow, that would be a good show to see while you are up here. You’re from Austria so you know how to stay warm. Enjoy the “D”

  12. skearn41

    hah Im looking forward to meeting them! πŸ˜€

  13. Srecko

    I envy u guys,i’m a student and a great D fan too,
    in Serbia games begin around 2AM also and believe me
    i know all about Chinese commentary πŸ™‚
    hope that you can bring some positive mojo to the
    Pistons and make them turn around this season
    all the best for D fans from Serbia

  14. Vlad

    Hello everybody and thank you for all the great tips and advices. πŸ™‚ We really appreciate all your help.

    We had the pleasure to meet a few people since arriving yesterday and I really didn’t expect everybody to be so nice to us. It’s not like everybody in Europe is rude, but the people here are much friendlier. The biggest difference we have noticed while talking to most people is that everybody is a bit more laid-back and relaxed. Everybody is asking us how we like it here and tries to give us an advice or two which is really helpful.

    Like DetoitGirl4life said, the people are suffering, but the are strong minded. They don’t give up, they try put their heart and soul in it and do everything possible to keep on going. Some really amazing people live in this city.

    Detroit has a certain vibe to it that just makes you fall in love with it. The more I see, the more I like it.

    The weather isn’t a big problem for us, because it is pretty much the same in Austria. We are used to it.

    We are a bit in a hurry right now. Thanks again for all your tips and I hope to see you all at the Palace one day. πŸ™‚

    Best regards
    Vladan & Martin

  15. Max-Aholic

    Awesome, its good to hear about some die hard Pistons fan from so far away. I hope you had a good time. Although, I wish the nationally telivised games we’re in Chinease, that way would have to hear everyone hate on us the entire game.

  16. Ronnie D.

    I got a place for them to go. Take Gratiot down to 8 mile (or more south). Turn down any of those streets and make friends with the locals.

    Just joking, you dont want to do that.

  17. Exzile

    Welcome to the D!!! I hope you guys have a kick ass time! I’m in Houston and watch all the games online with League pass and the first thing you notice when you get to the Palace is how huge all the players are! Even Bynum looks big in person.

    For a great cheap meal stop by Little Caesar’s for a $5 hot-n-ready pizza. It’s pure american grease, fast and cheap. For authentic Detroit style pizza stop at Buddy’s.

    Have Fun Guys!


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