Talking Pistons on The Benchwarmers

by | Jan 19, 2010 | 22 comments

With the Pistons losing streak behind us, Jim Kushlan, Don Zellers and “Shaggy” Matt Culbreath were nice enough to ask me back on their show again to talk Pistons.

If your in the Toledo area you can check out the show Sunday nights on News Talk 1370 WSPD. The Benchwarmers cover our the Pistons, Tigers, Lions, as well as Ohio based teams. The Benchwarmers is what you get when you put a Pistons fan and a Cavs fan on the same radio show.

Listen to the Interview


  1. Jesse

    Even if there isn’t a specific free agent out there that Pistons could get (or want), clearing cap space means flexibility and options moving forward. That is something this franchise doesn’t have as long as they are handcuffed to the Tay and Rip contracts. Cap space doesn’t just mean free agents, it also means you can absorb larger contracts in a lopsided trade, which is usually where Dumars shines. Right now they are stuck.

    If you think the making the playoffs is futile (and I agree), then why not support a plan that speeds up the rebuilding process? If we still have Rip and Tay, next season won’t be any different- we still can’t compete with the cream of the East. I’m just afraid that this scenario in unavoidable because I don’t see how Dumars moves any of these bad contracts….

  2. terry

    Good interview, what a lot of people fail to understand is when Joe signed C.V. and B.G. we were set to have a deep team with Stuck, Rip, Wallace, Charlie, and Tayshaun starting (and yes Charlie should start, don’t forget he missed training camp and preseason and has been playing hurt) with Gordon, Bynum, Jonas, Daye, and Maxiel coming off the bench. That’s a potent lineup! Things just didn’t go as planned the planned line up has only played, guess how many games together this season……….. 2! 2 games, I believe the home opener and one game last month. I have no reason not to believe that with a full roster we would be at least in the top 5 in the east. The Pistons really don’t need a superstar nor if we hadn’t signed B.g. and C.V. were we likely to get one. What we need is another impact player in the middle and with the economy we can get one for cheap. We may even be able steal David Lee, But think about guys like Channing Frye, Udonis Haslem, Tyson Chandler, Ilguaskas. Many fans think we only have the MLE to work with but they forget that Kwame Brown’ s 4 million and Chris Wilcox’s 3 million come off the books at the end of this season, add that with the MLE that’s somewhere between 12 and 13 million if we can get Big Ben to take the vet’s min again. We can land an impact player in free agency.

  3. Jesse

    Chris Wilcox has a player option for next season, and he will exercise. Kwame’s contract doesn’t take us under the cap…. all we have is the MLE, and that ain’t enough to entice David Lee to leave a town like NY to come to a bad team.

    I disagree with the assertion that we are a top 5 team in the East if healthy. I don’t think the problem is depth, I think it’s chemistry- the pieces just don’t fit together… This was going to be a down year no matter what, I don’t know why people refuse to accept it, you can’t stay on top forever….

  4. terry

    Ok, Ok I stand corrected on the money tip. I still think the economy will allow us to land a better post player than would be normal for that money, but that remains to be seen. It’s all speculation on how good the team would be without the injuries, but if healthy I maintain this is not a bad team, the chemistry would be there as there are no selfish players on this roster. I’ve seen glimpses but they just don’t have the time in yet. Like I said 2 games together. I would even dare say the Pistons are the best losing team this year, whatever that means. A lottery pick would be a blessing but not good on the ego however.

  5. Jesse

    I think Charlie is one of the most selfish players in the league…. watch a game and pay attention to how often he shoots, about 4 out of every 5 times he touches it.

    I think in a down economy, where players are going to have to take less money, that they will be looking to join winning teams to take some of the sting out of taking a pay cut. Other teams will be able to offer the same money the Pistons can, and Detroit as a city is not a free agent destination.

    Here are the reasons I don’t think the team would good even if healthy: no true pg, lack of post scoring, no 7 footers and general lack of talent up front, rookie coach, no identity, no superstar…. and I understand that you disagree with that last point, but history says otherwise. On paper, we have some talent, but on paper so do the Knicks. It doesn’t always translate to the court.

    • junior

      charlie is not selfish u watch when he gets the ball its usuaklly with 10 sec on the shot clock u try a few moves to get a shot and well if its not there u have no time to pass it so he has to take it, besides when he gets the ball its cause they want him to shoot it, its called a designed play .

  6. terry

    In all fairness Charlie was brought here to score points, and with our main scorers injured who is he going to pass to? Stuckey can’t take every shot and without Rip C.V. is the only other go to scorer, and at least as of late if he is taking 4 out of 5 he’s hitting 3. You gotta admit with his minutes and playing hurt he has been pretty damn efficient. As of lately however, for the most part they have been spreading the ball around more so the chemistry is improving, but you may be right about one thing, it could take another year or two at least for this team to really get back on track.

  7. Jesse

    I do agree, Charlie’s job here is to put the ball in the basket, and for the money he is being paid he is a relative deal. However, he has always shot the ball that frequently. I saw a stat somewhere this summer, can’t remember where, that over his entire career that he does actually shot the ball 80% of the time he touches it. If he spent more time in the post (and I don’t expect him to start) that would be a little easier to swallow. I just don’t like that, you’d think a young player would defer a bit more to the established players on his team. Doesn’t scream Piston style basketball…..

  8. Jesse

    To be honest though, I’m completely biased on this topic, never been a fan of Charlie’s…. Don’t like his shot selection, he should rebound more, not a good defender, he’s streaky, he seems unfocused at times, his game lacks an overall toughness, never liked the whole twitter thing….. And it’s compounded by the fact that we traded Chauncey so we could sign him. I don’t know that I’ll ever warm up to him….

  9. junior

    baby, u better watch it or maxiells gonna eat u!!!

  10. Jesse

    10 seconds left on the shot clock? That’s still half of an offensive possession, not exactly time to panic or start jacking it up. With 5 seconds left I’d buy that argument, not 10.

    Look, the guy has passing skills, I just don’t think he takes advantage of them. Dude only has 6 assists in his last 13 games….

    Something else to chew on, if he’s as good as some people seem to think he is, then why did 2 organizations give up on him so quickly? Toronto traded him for a small guard after one season, and the Bucks let him walk after he put up career numbers in almost every category… Young big men are usually untouchable in the trade market until teams are sure of what they’ve got.

  11. terry

    The 2010 sweepstakes of course, and wasn’t he unrestricted? He prolly wanted out anyway.

  12. edt

    charlie v is the black hole. once you pass him the ball it stays there. not even light can escape.

    • Jesse

      Thank you edt, finally someone on this site agrees with me. If you guys don’t believe it find pro scouting reports on him, go to a site like that has advanced stats, they will confirm it.

  13. Rashit Flawless (Russia)

    I can’t agree we’re the best losing team nor we’re top 5 if healthy. 1)look at Portland. They are all injured, but they play great ball. Look at n.y. look at lac – they are good, young, talented. Many teams are. Look at losing chicago – they may land Bosh or any star player. 2)I mean why we’re more attractive than others? Why free agents would go to us? Everyone want to play in miami or orlando, or ny because of the cities. Why anyone will trade players for Rip or Tay- they are definitely not at their prime, there are better players on the market, every team’s chasing last year contracts except the contenders. But even contenders don’t want Rip or injured Tay. Wilcox will stay, so we won’t have much money to sign players. I beleive Joe is a genius, he better be, because he put us in the position of the worst team ball movement-wise and i don’t beleive there’s good chemistry. When we were champions, we didn’t have a superstar. We had the best machine in the nba, the best TEAM. The best role players. We had a chief chauncey, the best defensive player. We-had-heart! I don’t see that heart now. So why should we be in the playoffs? For what? I love pistons, i always will be pistons fan. I just want some light, the team goes wrong. And the team is weak now.

  14. terry

    I guess we must agree to disagree, I thought I might be missing something, then I checked his stats. Charlie is plus 13 efficiency, shooting damn near 45% from the floor, and 80% from the stripe. In most cases when a big gets it in the post he’s expected to score, that’s what C.V. does, and when he get’s it from long range he’s usually wide open so why not exploit it? I feel you Rashit, but I said top five in the East…. No team has had the kind of injury plagued season Detroit has, like I said they all played a whopping 2 games together so far. A healthy Pistons is flat out better than any Chicago, New York, or even Portland. No heart? You must not have been watching guys like Rodney Stuckey, Ben Wallace, or Jonas Jerebko lately! The Pistons are in the top 5 most valuable organizations in the league if I’m not mistaken, and have the longest streak of sell out games in league history. I think that should be a good enough reason to attract a least one free agent of note.

    • Jesse

      You’re looking at face value stats. The point is that the offense comes to a stop when CV gets the ball, that has an impact on the other players. The offense becomes stagnant and predictable. Just because a shot goes in doesn’t make it a good shot. 45% is a pretty average shooting percentage for PF.

      I’m not sure why you think that Detroit is so appealing to free agents… the team is rebuilding, the state’s economy is crumbling, the weather is bad, the team is being sold, there isn’t a guy like J Kidd that makes everyone else better, they don’t have much money to spend…. Players don’t care that the franchise is the 4th most valuable, and they certainly don’t care about some phony sell-out streak from a few years ago.

    • edt

      terry you are absolutely right that charlie v can shoot the lights out. but charlie is also very limited, all the opposing team has to do is double him and he won’t pass, he’ll try to make a circus shot and miss.

      Which makes charlie a great 6th man for the money, where they will 1 on 1 him, but as a starter, other teams trap him and double him, and because Charlie V is the black hole that possession always ends up in a missed shot or a takeaway. He’s too predictable and limited in basketball iq.

      Also you can tell when someone is bad on D because they try to use their arms to do everything. Defense is all about moving your feet, getting in position, because when you are in position you can defend without fouling.

      Charlie V won’t move his feet, he just tries to use his arms to defend and that either ends in a foul or the opponent will just blow by him.

  15. Marcell

    Good interview. I think your right about not wanting to see a trade right now. We haven’t even seen the full potential of what the team has this season since everyone has been hurt at one time or another. I really don’t see how Joe can get a true evaluation when guys are dressed in suits at game time. I just wish I could get all this For Sale stuff out of my head.

  16. Rashit Flawless (Russia)

    terry, I saw many games, not every game unfortunately, but almost every game on-line (it usually starts at 4am Moscow time and I’m a waking zombie on the work after these games lol) and I wrote zillion times here, that JJ, Big Ben are HUGE for us! They play awesome almost every game. But not every player does that in this team. JJ and BigBen do it night in and night out. I don’t feel everyone else is dying on the court. By “No heart” i mean the team can’t work as one. I saw Pistons play hard even if the game is almost lost. But I still don’t beleive in good chemistry there, something is wrong. I saw Stuckey who don’t want to pass it – just pulls up every time, 5-6 times in a row. I saw 4-5 missed 3s from CV and he continued to shoot, I saw Wilcox played so awful that if was him, i’d decided to quit after the game. Now he’s showing something good, but he had terrible streaks and he will. I saw BG’s like 2of20. What the hell? They all are dang good players! I won’t beleive if it’s just “not his day”. Something is wrong inside this bunch. And Q with Joe should fix it. Now Pistons are more like hopeless outsiders than underdogs trying to reach playoffs. They can play not better but on another level, much better. But they just don’t. Wrong pieces or what?

  17. Rashit Flawless (Russia)

    Like it was said, if a player hits the jumper doesn’t mean it’s a good jumper. I know you’re tired to hear this but when there were Ben, Tay, Rip, Chauncey, Sheed – there was a team play. Well designed combinations and a lot of open shots. Good quality offence. This season most of games i see Stuckey or BG taking awfully hard shots, some of them go in, most of all not. Some games i see Rodney making 11assists, some games he makes 2 and he shoots any time, over someone’s hands, dribble driving under the basket alone with no pass made before this drive. That’s what i mean. They can play better, but all i see is a selfish play time to time, lack of thought and movement in the offence. I’m not talking about D, but if Joe decided to make run’n’gun team that can score in bunches, i can say that any player can play streetball 1on1, but there are too few of basketball. That’s what i mean

  18. gimbal



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