Posts Tagged ‘Rodney Stuckey’

THE Answer for the Pistons

December 8, 2008

Whether Michael Curry, Joe Dumars or Allen Iverson like it or not … the Detroit Pistons will only become the 2nd best team in the Eastern Conference, again this season, if they eventually come to the following realization about their team’s mix of players:

#1. PG – Stuckey [should be playing 30+ MPG]
#2. OG – Rip [should be playing 30+ MPG]
#3. SF – Prince [back-up back-up PG, should be playing 30+ MPG]
#4. PF – Maxiell/Johnson/McDyess
#5. C – Sheed
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#6. OG/PG – Iverson [ala The Micro-wave]
#7. SF – Afflalo
#8. PF – McDyess/Maxiell/Johnson
#9. C – Brown
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#10. SF – Herrmann
#11. PF/C – Johnson/Maxiel/Brown
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#12. PG – Bynum [4th string]

Although their best Group-Of-5 does not include Mr. Iverson, if he’s used corrrectly, off the bench …

for high intensity spot duty, in relief of Stuckey or Rip, ala Vinnie Johnson [from yesteryear], as the 3rd Guard in the rotation, behind Zeke & Little Jo, who could really fill it up whenever he’s in the game; but, is nowhere nearly good enough defensively or in terms of rebounding, at this stage of his career, to justify [i] receiving major minutes on this team, or [ii] the holding back of Stuckey, in general, at the PG spot … 

then, the Pistons still have what it takes to regain their perch beside the Celtics.

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How he handles this situation, from here on in, is the first significant test of Michael Curry’s leadership with the Pistons.

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Growth & development in a fine young man

November 5, 2008

The player who the Detroit Pistons have acquired from the Denver Nuggets is a far different person today than the subject of this infamous clip …

Practice?

older, wiser … and, more mature in his thinking; about life, in general, and particularly his specific approach to the game he loves.

Iverson’s Pistons Press Conference

Allen Iverson Press Conference Transcript 

When your pro sports franchise is run by men with the ‘cred’ of Bill Davidson, Joe D. and MC [Hammer] you are going to be able to ‘integrate’ a great talent like A.I. seamlessly.

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Q1. Are the Pistons a better team on the court today than they were two days ago?
A1. Maybe; maybe not. Only time will tell.

Q2. With this acquisition, are the Pistons now going to win the NBA title this season?
A2. Probably not; not with the LA Lakers being as strong as they are this year.

Q3. Are the Pistons worse off today than they were two days ago?
A3. Not a chance. They have added a terrificly talented player to their team; created roster space for their burgeoning younger players to grow into; and, freed up ‘Cap Space’ after this current season, depending on what specific direction their GM [Joe D.] wants to go with this team. Which makes this a Win-Win-Win situation for the Pistons, now and going forward.

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By far, the best observation/quote these eyes have read, to this point, about the tenure of Joe D. with the Pistons is this:

“The Pistons, under Dumars, never stop, they just idle with the engine running. It’s what makes them interesting.”
Mitch Albom/Detroit Free Press

[read more here … on the fine work of Joe D.]

Where they’ll go from here

October 27, 2008

The NBA’s pre-season is now complete.

These are the final standings:

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2008-2009 Conference Preseason Standings
Eastern Conference
Eastern W L PCT GB CONF DIV HOME ROAD L 10 STREAK
Orlando 6 1 0.857 0.0 4-1 4-1 3-1 3-0 6-1 W 6
Boston 6 2 0.750 0.5 5-2 3-2 3-1 3-1 6-2 W 2
Detroit 6 2 0.750 0.5 5-1 3-0 3-2 3-0 6-2 L 1
Atlanta 5 3 0.625 1.5 4-1 3-1 1-2 4-1 5-3 W 1
Philadelphia 4 3 0.571 2.0 4-3 4-1 1-2 3-1 4-3 W 1
Chicago 4 4 0.500 2.5 1-1 1-1 2-3 2-1 4-4 W 3
Indiana 4 4 0.500 2.5 1-0 1-0 3-1 1-3 4-4 W 1
Toronto 4 4 0.500 2.5 1-1 1-1 2-3 2-1 4-4 L 2
New Jersey 3 4 0.429 3.0 2-4 1-4 1-3 2-1 3-4 W 1
New York 3 4 0.429 3.0 3-4 3-4 0-3 3-1 3-4 L 2
Cleveland 3 5 0.375 3.5 3-3 0-1 2-3 1-2 3-5 W 1
Miami 2 5 0.286 4.0 0-3 0-1 1-3 1-2 2-5 W 1
Washington 2 5 0.286 4.0 0-2 0-0 0-2 2-3 2-5 L 1
Milwaukee 1 7 0.125 5.5 0-3 0-3 1-3 0-4 1-7 L 3
Charlotte 0 8 0.000 6.5 0-4 0-4 0-2 0-6 0-8 L 8
Western Conference
Western W L PCT GB CONF DIV HOME ROAD L 10 STREAK
New Orleans 7 0 1.000 0.0 2-0 1-0 4-0 3-0 7-0 W 7
Denver 5 1 0.833 1.5 3-1 2-1 3-0 2-1 5-1 W 2
L.A. Lakers 6 2 0.750 1.5 2-2 1-1 6-2 0-0 6-2 W 6
Minnesota 6 2 0.750 1.5 2-1 2-1 3-1 3-1 6-2 W 1
Houston 5 2 0.714 2.0 5-0 3-0 3-1 2-1 5-2 W 3
Phoenix 5 2 0.714 2.0 3-0 1-0 2-1 3-1 5-2 W 3
Golden State 4 2 0.667 2.5 2-1 0-0 3-0 1-2 4-2 W 2
Portland 4 3 0.571 3.0 3-3 0-2 2-2 2-1 4-3 L 1
Utah 4 3 0.571 3.0 3-2 2-1 1-1 3-2 4-3 W 2
Dallas 4 4 0.500 3.5 1-0 0-0 2-2 2-2 4-4 L 2
L.A. Clippers 4 4 0.500 3.5 2-3 2-1 0-4 4-0 4-4 L 3
San Antonio 3 4 0.429 4.0 0-2 0-2 1-3 2-1 3-4 L 2
Memphis 2 6 0.250 5.5 0-2 0-2 2-2 0-4 2-6 L 4
Oklahoma City 1 6 0.143 6.0 0-5 0-1 0-1 1-5 1-6 L 3
Sacramento 1 7 0.125 6.5 1-7 0-2 1-3 0-4 1-7 L 6
 x-Clinched Playoff Berth | e-Clinched Eastern Conference | a-Clinched Atlantic Division | c-Clinched Central Division |
 se-Clinched Southeast Division | w-Clinched Western Conference | sw-Clinched Southwest Division |
 nw-Clinched Northwest Division | p-Clinched Pacific Division | o-Eliminated from Playoffs contention

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Fans should take a close look at where their favourite team is at today … and, then, compare this reality to the final regular season standings which they’ll see in April, 2009, as the little bolded letters get placed beside the playoff-bound teams’ names in the far-left column.

Time to Let the games begin, in earnest …

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Mano a Mano

Mano a Mano

Certified

Certified

Bad Boyz II

Bad Boyz II

Sunrise, Sunset

Sunrise, Sunset

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2nd Coming

because this is going to be a terrific year, in the NBA!

Bad Boyz II … featuring U Can’t Touch This

September 19, 2008

This terrific stream of Detroit Pistons’ material just keeps rolling off the presses …

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Awkward Interviews: Rodney Stuckey [It’s Just Sports, via TrueHoop]
” … when I’m in the game with Chauncey, coach wants to have the ball in Chauncey’s hands more. When I’m in with Rip, he wants the ball in my hands more so Rip can come off screens and what not. Things are gonna be the same offensively with stuff like that, but I’ll tell you one thing, our defense and defensive standpoint, things are going to be a lot different. We’re gonna be picking up full court, trying to get back to our old ways of playing Bad Boys defense. That’s something to look forward to this coming year.”

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seemingly, coming from every corner of the net.

Bad Boyz II … featuring M[ichael]C[urry] Hammer-ball makes it’s debut, for real, in Motown … Wed Oct 29 2008, at the Palace vs the Pacers.

Now you know exactly what the intro music SHOULD be.

PS. If the Lakers hadn’t already been annointed in this space as eventual 2008-2009 NBA Titleists, with a Legendary 70+ regular season W’s to their credit, IF ALL HANDS ON DECK CAN STAY HEALTHY! … even yours truly MIGHT be swayed into thinking that this year’s Pistons Crew has a legit [underdog’s] shot at knocking down the reigning CHAMPS … and, THEN, taking out, again, Showtime.v2, in Lalaland. Might being the operative word, of course. Still, something to keep in mind, as the season ahead develops.

PPS. I Love THIS Game, I & II.

Pistons go back to basics

September 19, 2008

If this keeps much longer … KSB [much appreciated, JE Skeets!] is going to be listed as a Detroit Pistons’ mouth-piece. 🙂

Not to fear, however … as this correspondent has always had a predilection for anyone, and anything, linked with Making A Commitment To Excellence.

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Courtesy of nbaroundtable …

Curry going back to basics
“No matter what the rules are, the game of basketball goes to the most aggressive teams and players,” Curry said. “We want to be the team that’s always on the attack, both defensively and offensively.”

• Pay attention to detail.
• Daily conditioning and player development sessions.
• Increase the intensity and consistency at the defensive end.
• Increase scoring in the paint.
• Establish clearly defined roles. Curry expects to play 10 or 11 players on a regular basis.

Click the link and read the whole thing.

Close your eyes and listen intently.

Do these words and simple concepts harken back to a different place?
A different time?
A different hairdo? 

Say, perhaps, the 1982-1983 season … when a certain young relatively inexperienced assistant coach was promoted internally to the head man’s chair, for a team – and a GM who was himself a HOF immortal – that had recently captured an NBA Title but was also in need of re-direction, at that time, with a fascinating combination of wily vets, established All-Stars, and a certain ‘New Kid On The Block‘ [an athletic 21 year old, 6-9, 225, PF], who was ready-to-rock-and-roll into Prime Time.

Hmmmmm …

Could it possibly be … delectable symmetry?

… in the same season featuring the ‘Re-birth of SHOWTIME, in LA‘.

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The most important sentence in the whole article?

“[Rasheed] Wallace, who has been at the practice facility most of the summer, has complied.”

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First-class stuff, all around, from the new Sheriff … in [Mo]Town.

Showtime in the Motor City.

Bill Davidson, Joe D. and Michael Curry … on the same page with the Pistons

September 18, 2008

Crystal ball gazing …

Instead of back-sliding this year, keen NBA observers SHOULD actually be expecting the Pistons … to improve this season.

* Dumars defends lack of Pistons’ roster moves:
The No. 1 question, though, that hit the Pistons as they completed the first half of their preseason bus tour — which made stops in Lansing, Grand Rapids and Traverse City Wednesday — was this: With the same players coming back, how does this team take a step forward?

The answer: It starts with a new coach (Michael Curry), a rejuvenated attitude and a new commitment, and some significant growth from within — specifically, larger roles for second-year guards Rodney Stuckey and Arron Afflalo, the two featured players on the bus tour.

* Four Pistons seek one spot:
“We are looking at how we can inject our young guys into the rotation more, giving them a solid role and still get the most out of our veteran guys and be as efficient as possible,” Curry said.

* Davidson speaks with Mitch Albom:
Q: How about the best coach you ever hired?
A: That’s a tough one. (He laughs.) I wanna say Michael Curry. (He laughs again.)

Q: Why — because he hasn’t proven you wrong otherwise?
A: No, no … I know Michael. And I have complete confidence in Michael. And I know that the Pistons are gonna be a much different team this year than they were last year — because of the coaching.

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6 years straight … and, still, counting.
UPDATE:
* Pistons’ Dumars to keep nucleus together in ’08 [Fri Sep 19 2008]

Pistons’ efficiency and productivity

September 17, 2008

Yet another correct step forward for the Pistons’ new Head Coach, Michael Curry.

Four Pistons seek one spot:
First-year coach Michael Curry will give Amir Johnson, Jason Maxiell and Kwame Brown a legitimate and fair shot at unseating veteran Antonio McDyess as the starting power forward-center opposite Rasheed Wallace.

“We are looking at how we can inject our young guys into the rotation more, giving them a solid role and still get the most out of our veteran guys and be as efficient as possible,” Curry said. “One of the things we are looking at is having ‘Dyess go back to his role of coming off the bench.”

To be clear, Curry is in no way suggesting McDyess doesn’t deserve to maintain his starting spot. Quite the opposite.

Whoever wins that starting spot won’t necessarily be the best player,” Curry said. “I think it’s hands-down that McDyess is our second-best post player behind Rasheed. But who we end up starting will be the player who gives us the best balance.”
 
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Change – both sudden and subtle – is afoot in the Motor City … as the Pistons seek to re-calibrate their engine; while maintaining their status as a high calibre machine.

There are several reasons this corner thinks that Michael Curry has what it takes to become a top tier coach in the NBA … not the least of which are acute decisions and perceptions like these.

Beast of the East … right now

September 15, 2008

In sharp contrast to many some observers in the hoops blogosphere …

[for example]

* Detroit being left behind as rest of East improves
* Summer Forecast: Which way is the East going?
NBA off-season rankings – v3.0
* NBA power rankings: Celtics no surprise as preseason No. 1

if these eyes had to make a projection, this second, on the eventual No. 1 team this season in the Eastern Conference … the pick would be the … Detroit Pistons.

Given the Celtics’ loss of James Posey [F/G] …

* Exchanging Michael Curry for Flip Saunders is going to have a gigantic, positive effect on the performance of this team
* Adding draft picks like Walter SharpeTrent Plaisted, Deron Washington 
* Exchanging Kwame Brown for Theo Ratliff
* Adding a very athletic Euro pro like Will Bynum

and, most importantly

* The continued maturation of Rodney ‘The Real Deal’ Stuckey [Yr-2], Arron Afflalo [Yr-2], Jason Maxiell [Yr-4], Amir Johnson [Yr-4] and Cheikh Samb [Yr-2] 
* While maintaining their overall roster stability … by retaining KEY players like Chauncey Billups, Rip Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince, Antonio McDyess and Rasheed Wallace

has further ensconced Detroit at the top of their conference and cemented Joe Dumars’ place amongst the finest GM’s in the NBA today.

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Q1. Have the Pistons lost three [3] consecutive Eastern Conference Finals?
A1. Yes they have.

Q2. Do they have the horses, once again, to make it back to the NBA Finals?
A2. Yes they do.

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More importantly, though … no other NBA team has been able to re-tool their overall line-up … while continuing to perform at a very high level … and is better equipped, at this time, going forward from here … with a mix of talented veterans & youngsters, in position to ‘wheel & deal‘, if necessary.

Kudos to Joe D.!

The Man simply knows what he’s doing.

NBA Playoffs Conference Finals Preview

May 20, 2008

Eastern Conference Finals

(1) BOSTON CELTICS (H)

(2) DETROIT PISTONS

By the Numbers

QIR – #1 (6)
Points Differential Rank – #1
Points Allowed Rank – #2
Rebounding Differential Rank – #3

QIR – #2 (10)
Points Differential Rank – #2
Points Allowed Rank – #1
Rebounding Differential Rank – #7
 

Basketball Acumen

Still the team to beat in the East with home court advantage. Team D is The Story, fuelled by KG. Must find a way to shake lose Ray Ray on Offense. Easier said than done. Key Match-up: Doc Rivers vs Flip Saunders, especially, during the last 6 minutes of each game.

Good enough to win the series. Quality depth is outstanding. Top notch young players will need to continue stellar play. Rodney Stuckey (PG) is the Real Deal. Must assert their collective will to match the Celtics on the glass. Key Match-up: ‘Good’ Sheed vs ‘Bad’ Sheed.

Who will win

It’s going to go 7 games and it’s just too close to call. 

 

Western Conference Finals

(1) LA LAKERS (H)

(3) SAN ANTONIO SPURS

By the Numbers

QIR – #10 (30)
Points Differential Rank – #3
Points Allowed Rank – #19
Rebounding Differential Rank – #8

QIR – #7 (23)
Points Differential Rank – #8
Points Allowed Rank – #3
Rebounding Differential Rank – #12
 

Basketball Acumen

Will need to out-score the Spurs. Bench must continue to score, making open shots. Key Match-up: Kobe vs Ginobili. Without Bynum, should be the underdog in this specific match-up. Must improve interior D to have a chance. Ariza’s D & Rebounding will be missed. Will go as far as the MVP takes them.

The Heart of a Champion. Quality depth is first rate. Versatile and physical. Veteran role players know what it takes to win. Will win the series if they can dominate the glass. Team ethos is the best in the League. Key Match-up: Gregg Popovich vs Phil Jackson, the two best coaches in the NBA today.

Who will win

It’s going to go 7 games … and it’s just too close to call. 

 

 

Hubie Brown’s take: Toronto @ Detroit, 2nd Half

April 14, 2008

The best in the business did the American national broadcast of yesterday’s Raptors @ Pistons game. This is what he had to say about Toronto & Detroit, as these two teams finish off the regular season schedule later this week and look ahead to the start of the post-season tournament.

Enjoy!

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Hubie Brown on the Raptors & the Pistons

 

3rd Quarter

9:14 Rasho has been solid … 1st unit v 1st unit

9:00 Excellent trap by Bosh

7:21 Pistons are getting killed by the 4 TO’s this quarter … abnormal for their 1st unit

7:06 Every chance Bosh gets he MUST take Rasheed to the basket from 15-18 ft … Rasheed cannot stop him and Rasheed is the Pistons only shot-blocker … Bosh gets to the line 8 times per game but the rest of the team only gets there 12 times per game

6:10 Billups shoots 40% from 3 and shoots 4 per game … any time he crosses center in transition he is a definite 3-pt threat … Doc Rivers should be the COY because he kept all the balls in the air and the Celtics are the best Defensive half-court team in the League and THAT’S coaching

4:55 I like Delfino’s game … playing more minutes for Toronto, he can get you points in a hurry

4:47 If Billups is going to post-up Ford … whether he backs him down or he gets the pass in the post … the double-team has got to come quick …you cannot give Chauncey that high % shot in the lane

4:10 I’d like to see TJ Ford put on the afterburners for the rest of this game … get out on the break and make things happen

3:20 When things aren’t going well the Pistons will put you to sleep … they will maximize the clock, make extra passes and get a quality shot … appreciate their game, they will give the ball up to a guy who has a higher % shot

2:59 The Pistons are no longer playing soft vs any high screen with Rasheed, they are coming hard at Ford and not allowing him to turn the corner as they did in the 1st half, they are trapping and making Toronto play 4 on 3, wanting to what kind of game you (the Raptors) have ORGANIZED

2:35 Detroit has missed their last 6 shots BUT none were bad shots … their coaches are getting what they want … their players are reading the defense perfectly and making the 2nd and 3rd extra pass … they are just missing shots right now

2:05 Right now the Pistons are going into Hamilton BECAUSE HE HAS TJ Ford on him … Rip kicks out to Billups who makes a 3 … you have to close out hard at Billups and MAKE him put on the floor inside the 3 because he is shooting 40% from 3

1:32 Bosh showed great presence of mind to recover on Rasheed’s blocked shot and make the put back … I like his game today … he has been excellent

0:50 If you are going to trap on the baseline, like the Raptors just did, that’s fine but where’s the rotation … the man who trapped cannot come back out to defend the 1st pass out (which is what Toronto just did when Billups was quick trapped by Bosh & Calderon on the baseline out-of-bounds play

                      

4th Quarter

11:08 I just don’t understand why we are seeing all this 3-pt shooting from Toronto

10:50 Toronto’s PPG drop from 100 to 88 when they play the Pistons during their last 9 games over several years vs Detroit … the Raptors have their problems scoring vs Detroit

10:15 This is a big game for you Toronto … you must dominate the 2nd unit in this 4th Q … you cannot match them basket for basket like you did during the 2nd unit when Flip Saunders left his 2nd unit on the floor for 12 straight minutes

9:35 Toronto must get out and get some easy baskets between now and the end of this game by getting out on the break

9:10 Now that was an example of a player using his body to get a basket … Stuckey wanted the contact (vs Calderon), didn’t get it but was still able to make the layup

8:55 Kapono is a great shooter, period.

8:15 When Linsey Hunter came into this league he was a one of the best scorers in US college basketball but he has learned to adapt his game … when he plays with the 1st unit he is defensive stopper but when he plays with the 2nd unit, he is a big-time scorer

8:00 Ford & Bargnani are struggling for Toronto … if they are going to get major minutes between now and the end of the game they need to give major production for the Raptors

7:35 It comes down to stops for Toronto, that’s their biggest challenge night in and night out … especially 4th quarter defense in the last 6 minutes of the game

6:55 That was sheer athleticism by Stuckey (who scored on a TO run-out)

6:34 I like what Detroit is doing vs Calderon … Calderon is one of the premier offensive guards in the NBA … the Pistons are not going to allow him to shoot the high % 3 … because Jose is just too good

6:20 You have to like what going on with Detroit’s 2nd unit (as Stuckey blows by Delfino and scores)

5:45 Bosh has been solid doing yeoman’s work … the Big Thing is CAN THEY GET THE STOPS THEY NEED

4:55 The Detroit bench is terrific … they have better defenders than last year AND they can score the ball

4:30 I give Calderon a lot of credit for that … he passed up a shot and gave it to Parker who had an open look and missed … Toronto needed that one

3:54 That was an athletic move by Stuckey in transition

3:36 Detroit coaches will tell Afflalo right now that he just forced up a shot … force up shots in the playoffs and you will find yourself on the bench

3:07 Toronto NEEDS to get the ball inside right now instead of taking long jumpshots

2:30 there’s a tonne of talent here in Detroit with these young guys (referring to Aaron Afflalo, Jason Maxiell, Rodney Stuckey, Jarvis Hayes and Amir Johnson, coming off the bench)

2:03 Toronto is still in the game but they have to get some defense here … credit to Amir Johnson there vs the Raptors good Defense

1:15 Rodney Stuckey is for real … he can score the ball and he is playing with a lot of confidence right now

36.6 Detroit has outscored Toronto in transition 15-6, which is a major advantage … you want your PG to be able to go to the FT Line at crunch time and make those shots, Stuckey can do that for you

30.0 Detroit is one of the best teams in the League because they can win at home AND on the road

5.0 Detroit is terrific inside, outside and from the 3pt line; their defense is top notch; their defensive FG% & their defensive 3-pt % are terrific