by | Aug 9, 2010 | 14 comments

With the news of Mike Ilitch expressing interest today in buying the Pistons some things need to be said.  While I would love for the Ilitch’s to buy the team and keep them  in the state, I’m skeptical of the timing and the public statement by Ilitch to the media.

Think about it, if you wanted to pursue a business deal, wouldn’t you make the deal behind the scenes first and then notify the media when you knew the deal was in place?

On the Pistons side of things, there has been a major beef between Davidson and Ilitch that’s been public knowledge for years.  And that pesky lawsuit doesn’t help one bit.

Tom Wilson joining forces with Ilitch can’t make the Davidson clan feel good about selling the team to a man who already owns half of the states professional teams.

Yes it’s Caesarland, but how much dough does Ilitch holdings have?  I don’t think enough to successfully sustain a payroll of three major sports teams.

And if I’m Mike Ilitch and my dynasty of a hockey team is playing in that abysmal, beyond outdated arena that sadly bares the name of Joe Louis (he deserves better), I would be ecstatic rolling both of my teams right in the Palace of Auburn Hills.  It sure doesn’t look like the city of Detroit has enough cash to even think about financing a arena befitting of that team.

It’s like being handed the keys to a full furnished penthouse apartment when you live in a slum.  Would you move?

It seems like a perfect fit and a story that will make the headlines.  Ilitch “All Hail Caesar”….

Will it pan out?  I sure hope so.

Call me a pessimist if you will, but I just made you think.


  1. Brad

    Ilitch is a businessman, and wouldn’t enter a deal to buy the Pistons out of the goodness of his heart. He can get the team at a good purchase price, and the team’s payroll is reasonable. If there’s an NBA lockout in 2011-12, it wouldn’t cost him anything. I also think an Ilitch purchase paves the way for a single Pistons/Red Wings home arena, which honestly, is a necessity given metro Detroit’s economy. I honestly don’t think Karen Davidson cares enough about the Pistons to let a lawsuit get in the way of a quick and clean sale of the team. She only sees dollar signs, and the faster she gets those dollars, the better for her. A Mike Ilitch-owned Pistons franchise is the best thing for all parties involved.

  2. junior

    pursue* and you*, natalie you must have been in a hurry to get that off your mind and on paper. oh well im just glad that you are back to writing things. it was getting pretty scarce there for awhile. (no news to report) glad to see you back, get that boney fella to proof read for you. maybe he’d be good at that. (just poking fun at ya boney) sign t-mac trade rip and tay for a ? dont know but we need to get those two outta here to make room for the young guys. i think between day t-mac and summers we would be set at sf, and with BG, stuckey, will and terrico at our guard rotation that would be set also. add in monroe, cv31, and jj at pf set also. maxiell, big ben, and whoever they trade for, also wilcox. set there. thats a 4 to 5 seed team. . . . in the playoffs. if healthy. well ill check back in when t-mac is signed on thursday and see who you guys think will be traded first. (what if joed is signing t-mac as trade bait with rip or tay to get a QUALITY big? just something to ponder over, i have).

    • Steve DiLullo

      Sorry, I’ve been seriously lax in tending to my proofreading duties lately!

  3. junior


  4. Jan Scholl

    I think Ilitch is a great team owner but if he buys the team,he better be planning on using his own personal money to build the stadium. I have not gone to a Tiger game since the new park was built and I no longer visit the city of Detroit (which I loved as my oldest child was born there) because the city is taxing visitors from every wahoo city to pay for this stadium. And gouging the poor residents on top of it who can’t even afford a ticket to a game. I only watch hockey on tv as its a better view. I really admired Davidson for his open wallet as far as his team went. He loved his team. I was appalled when Karen said she needed the money and would now sell. Did none of his kids want to have this team? She creeps me out. I wish everyone the best in this but I have a queasy feeling. Sad as the schools can fall apart in Detroit but gotta put priority on a rich man’s dream stadium.

  5. Marcell

    I think it’s a way for him to gain public support to buy the team. If you gain public support now, than later on down the line it will be a lot easier to gain public support from the tax payers of Michigan to finance a brand new stadium downtown for his teams to play in! Redwings do need a nice place to skate on. He’s a rich happy camper (team owner that will profit from this purchase) and you’re a broke fan and tax payer. Please note: This is layman’s terms.

  6. Chris

    Valid point. It makes sense that he would publicly announce his “interest” in the team for a few reasons. For one, it garners more interest around the sale of the team. I know that a public statement alone isn’t going to push a billionaire to throw $400 mil down for a sports franchise, but it could at least help push some potential buyers to get their stuff together. Another thing that it does is it at least provides some hope for a desperate city in a dismal time. Lastly, this is simply a good PR move for Illitch holdings. If they can sway public perception into believing that the Illitch family is altruistic enough to put differences aside and keep a franchise local, then this could be considered a win.

    All things considered, I really hope that the team stays local because if our future is watching the Las Vegas Pistons and the Automotion dance team on stripper poles, Bill will be rolling over in his grave.

  7. daddy

    welcome to the d t mac. hope you stay true to your words and do whatever it takes to win. now we can start some trades and get 1 or 2 big men.

  8. Tom

    I’ve gotta say, the biggest loser in an Ilitch deal would be dominos ;-). Anyway, I think Ilitch buying the team would be good, and I think he expected it to happen. I also think Ilitch can sustain 3 sports franchises, after all, Mr. D kept the TB Lightning afloat somehow. That said my main concern is in fact with the stadium issue. In my humble opinion, all 4 of our major sports teams belong downtown. Joe Louis arena just is not going to cut it. The biggest problem is Cobo Hall. It’s dead space being used for practically nothing. I personally do not like NBA and NHL teams playing in the same arena, I prefer them to be separate. I can’t say I have an easy solution, everything I can come up with seems to be a bit off the wall and unrealistic. There is so much more the city can do with the waterfront property to make it better. You have to start making the city better somewhere. The new center area was a start, but sadly, I really think JLA, Cobo, and that awful people mover need to go. Where the money will come from…I do not have an answer, but we cannot just let old buildings sit and be used for nothing.

    • Natalie Sitto

      Tom….I thought the same thing about Domino’s. I always liked LC better anyway.

  9. Sandi

    Take Josh Boone can get him cheap good defensive player if he ever takes off forget about it he done it before

  10. pistons 4 life

    I don’t see any negative in Ilitch buying this team. A-you know the team would stay in Detroit and B-he always spends money to make his teams good. An owner that wants the team to win and not just “own the business” is a good owner.

  11. eddie

    Horrible idea, first off he can’t afford the Pistons. The problem I have with him buying the team is that he has expressed before that he isn’t interested in basketball nor owning an NBA team. Now that he has interest it only comes off as his ego wanting to purchase a team. He has no business in basketball. Furthermore the idea of the Pistons playing in Detroit makes me sick. There is no way that one more team in the city will save Detroit. The Palace is a beautiful facility and having it’s own parking lot is a huge plus in todays sports. I remember Bill Davidson saying that the Pistons would never leave Auburn Hills and I would hope that Karen would honor his wishes.


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