Tag:Jason Maxiell
Posted on: May 19, 2010 11:19 am
Edited on: May 19, 2010 11:25 am
 

Detroit Pistons Draft/Off-Season Outlook

The Pistons didn't get any luck like the 76ers and Wizards to move up in the draft and are stuck at their 7th overall spot for the 2010 NBA Draft. Things would have been much easier if they could have moved into the Top 5 and had a chance at DeMarcus Cousins or Derrick Favors, but considering how the Pistons season went this year, I guess it was foolish to expect any kind of luck for the MoTown boys this year. If only they could have actually lost more games instead of deciding to win 4 of their last 6 games to move them out of the bottom five and get stuck with this damn 7th overall pick!

So the consensus is to grab a big man, and even though they won't likely have a shot at Cousins or Favors, they are predicted by most analysts to go after Cole Aldrich or maybe Greg Monroe (if Aldrich is gone). This seems all fine and dandy on paper and makes perfect sense considering the biggest weakness of the Pistons is their lack of post scoring or overall post depth. However, when you look at their draft history with big men, it makes me a little afraid to take a big man with this pick. Here is the Pistons 1st round draft picks for the last decade:

2009 - Austin Daye (15th)
2008 - D.J. White (29th)
2007 - Rodney Stuckey (15th) Arron Afflalo (27th)
2006 - None
2005 - Jason Maxiell (26th overall)
2004 - None
2003 - Darko Milicic (2nd overall)
2002 - Tayshaun Prince (23th overall)
2001 - Rodney White (9th overall)
2000 - Mateen Cleaves (14th overall)

Now lets look over the big men the Pistons have taken with 1st round picks. Back in 01 they took Rodney White with the 9th overall pick. I don't think that worked out to well considering he was traded very soon to the Nuggets, who then shipped him to the Warriors, and now he's playing overseas. I will not go into detail of the Darko pick without having a mental breakdown and turning into a serial killer. Maxiell looked very good early on his career, and maybe the Pistons bad luck with big men was about to be broken. He played with a lot of energy and heart and was seen as maybe the next Ben Wallace for the Pistons. However, when they tried using him in big minute situations (instead of the bench/energy role he had been filling) he completely regressed and was not the savior. For some odd reason, they now have tried to make him a jump shooter and that is only making him worse. Another one bites the dust I guess. Then in 08, they took D.J. White, but we really can't count that since they didn't hold onto him long and traded him before the draft was even over. He hasn't panned out very well so far for the Thunder either I'm guessing though.

Now look at the perimeter players they've taken in their history. It's not a lot better, but there have been some gems in there. Tayshaun Prince in 02 proved to be a great selection as he helped them get a championship in 04 and helped take them to 7 straight ECFs. Rodney Stuckey, while not turning into Chauncey Billups as soon as everyone expected (due to the Allen Iverson trade bringing overwhelming and unrealistic expectations to Stuckey) has been showing great strides improvements and could be a very good starting PG for them going forward into the future.

Let's even look back deeper into the Pistons draft history. The best big man they ever drafted was Theo Ratliff in 1995 18th overall. While he didn't stay with them long, he turned into a very good defensive center; no superstar but still very good nonetheless. But their draft history with perimeter players is not even comparable. In 1994 they took Grant Hill with the 3rd overall pick. For the first 7 years of his career with the Pistons he accumulated more total points, rebounds, and assists than any other player in history besides Larry Bird and Oscar Robertson; good company huh? Then the year before that (1993) they took Allan Houston with the 11th overall pick. Houston, while only staying with the Pistons for a few seasons, went on to be a great shooter for the Knicks. Then, if we kick it old school, the Pistons took Joe Dumars in the 1985 draft at 18th overall. I think we all know how he went on to become one of the best Pistons ever.

Now the point I'm trying to make (if you haven't figured it out already) is that the Pistons don't have the best luck when drafting big men in the first round. While Aldrich and Monroe look good on paper, make sense for the Pistons to target, and if everything turned out perfectly, would be great picks for them. However, excuse me if I'm a little nervous about any big man the Pistons take; especially tall, slow, white guys like Aldrich (DARKO!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yell ). Now if they took a perimeter player, it wouldn't make much sense (especially considering they took Austin Daye, Durrell Summers, and Jonas Jerebko last year, signed Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva last year, and have enough perimeter players) but I'd be a lot less worried we'd turn out with a bust in this year's draft.

Now if the Pistons are unable to ship out Tayshaun Prince and Richard Hamilton (to create some cap room), then I wouldn't suggest drafting a perimeter player because we'd have an overload. However, maybe they could try trading down in the draft to take a lower projected big man like Patrick Patterson or Daniel Orton (or maybe still get lucky and have Greg Monroe still there). I know Joe D has been having trouble dumping off Prince and Rip's contracts, but maybe adding in their 7th overall pick to move down in the draft would help provide incentive for a team to take on the contracts of Prince and Rip. This would then provide a much bigger advantage for the Pistons than anything in the draft could as they would have room to sign a big name player in this star studded off-season.

All I know as this draft and off-season is huge for Joe D and the Pistons. If they are unable to make the right moves, we could be in trouble for a few more seasons (and after watching the Pistons be so successful for most of the last decade, it's going to hard to swallow more seasons like the last two). However, if they are able to dump off Prince and Rip's contracts, they will create room for a big name to join the Pistons for the 2010-2011 season and bring them back into contender mode.

As long as the Pistons don't draft another slow, foreign, big man (DARKO!!!!!!! Yell ) I guess I can't complain.


Posted on: October 29, 2009 9:47 am
Edited on: October 29, 2009 9:49 am
 

My Thoughts on the Pistons Opener

For the most part, I loved what I seen in this game. Love seeing Big Ben Wallace back on the Pistons , and I love his defense even more! He had Zach Randolph frustrated all night long and had him shut down. I think I only seen Randolph score once or twice on Big Ben, with the rest of his points coming on FTs or on Kwame Brown /Charlie V. At 35 he can still play very good defense and rebound well; his hops aren't what they once were but he's no chump. He's still the best defensive prescence they have in the paint and is the best they've had in there since he left before. This is one of the better games on defense I've seen this Pistons play in a long time (maybe all the way back to when he left before), and it's no coincidence that they do it with him back. Anyone that has ever doubted or hated Big Ben just was shown what he's still capable of even though he's no where near his prime. For a long time now haters have said it was Big Ben who was made by the Pistons, but I think all us Pistons fans know and anyone that watches him play knows it's the other way around. He might be having them hold teams up 90 ppg all year long like in his prime days, but he can make sure they are still a formidable defense. He with Kwame Brown and Jason Maxiell can lock down the paint on defense. Now of course we need to see them against a real threat down low first before this is proven, but I think we'll get to see what they're really made of against the Magic on the 3rd (next Tuesday).

I've been a Ben Gordon hater and have been upset with how Richard Hamilton has turned out since Chauncey Billups left, but for the most part I was impressed with how they played last night. Rip still had still isn't playing like he should be (still trying to dribble too much instead of just getting open for a shot and knocking them down), but he was good for the most part. I was very impressed with Gordon right off the bat with Gordon (that 4 point play was amazing) and he really looks like he could fit in nicely. He didn't ball hog like I expected him too, and if he continues to fit in and play team ball like he did last night, I'm glad we got him and will admit I was wrong for hating on him this off season.

Rodney Stuckey had some flashes of the great play we know he is capable of, but not enough of them to prove to me that he's going to "come out of his shell" already and be more aggressive. Bynum looked very good still (other than trying to shoot jumpers when he should be driving) and if Stuckey don't step it up this season I wouldn't be against starting Bynum. Prince was looking good on offense, but I want him to get back to playing lock down perimeter defense too; there is no way a guy like Rudy Gay should get that much made shots on him. Charlie V was really the only Piston who I was disappointed with (although he did start playing well toward the end), and I expected more from him. Like Logic said, we need more scoring from the front court and he's a guy I expected to step up and do that. However this game he didn't do that, but luckily it was only the Grizzlies and not an actual tough team we were playing. I guess you can chalk it up to him being a little banged up still and not getting much time in the preseason, so maybe once he plays a few games he'll start getting more into the offense and scoring more. I hope so because we do need his scroring; Rip and Gordon can't score all our points.


Overall, the team did well and looks like they could improve quite a bit after the disappointed last year. I still need to see more and against better teams before I say they will be a competitive playoff team, but right now they're off to a good start. There was a lot of doubt from the general public, Pistons fans themselves, and even myself. However, a lot of those doubts and pessimistic thoughts are gone for me (with some still remaining to be seen). I know this is just the Memphis "my college team is better than I am" Grizzlies, but it's still a positive sign to see the defense holding a team under 80 points and Rip and Gordon playing well together. We'll see soon enough if they can have success against a good team when they play the Orlando Magic on Tuesday, November 3rd! I'm ready to see some more...........

DEEETTRROOOOOOOIIITTT BAAAAAAAASSSKKEETTBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
AAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!! Laughing


Posted on: February 3, 2009 7:39 am
Edited on: February 3, 2009 7:42 am
 

Don't Stop Believing..............

..................... in the Pistons (Pistons fans). This is mainly addressed to Pistons fans because in all honestly, I could careless what the rest of the league thinks. In fact, the Pistons have shown in the past they do better when they are the underdog and don't have a lot of people supporting them. So I doubt I will change any minds of other fans that have completely given up on the Pistons (and I don't intend to), but I just want to make sure my fellow Detroit fans keep the faith and don't lose hope.

The first thing to remember is we haven't even made it to the All Star break yet. The Pistons always play better in the 2nd half of the year, and in their most successful seasons (i.e. the 2004 championship season) they catch fire shortly after the All Star break and carry that into the playoffs. The Pistons can still get things together and star clicking after they have time to figure things out during the break. It's not like the Pistons are a below .500 team struggling for a playoff spot. They will make the playoffs, but the only thing that is questionable is what seed they will get. It doesn't matter if the Cavaliers do win the division because back 2004, the Pacers finished ahead of the Pistons to win the division, yet Detroit still went on to win the championship.

The next thing to consider is look closely and compare this year to the 2004 championship season. They go out and make a trade for a superstar player, they start out slow and everyone doubts them (and continues to do so all the way until they win the championship), a little while after the All Star break they catch fire and finish the season strong, and they carry their success all the way through the playoffs and win the championship against a team no one thought could be beat. Ever since then things have changed; everyone started supporting the Pistons and putting them amongst the contenders every year. The only problem was they couldn't seem to get past the ECFs (other than the following year in 2005). This was because they had gotten overconfident and didn't have that same "hunger" factor as they did in 2004.

This year, they made the trade for Allen Iverson , and while they might be doing better right now with Chauncey Billups , they would still fall short with him again in the playoffs. Billups is still one of the best PGs in the game (IMO 2nd behind Chris Paul ) and he contributed just as much (or more) as everyone else to our success and in helping us win the championship (he deserved that Finals MVP). But he, along with the rest of the team, and had gotten arrogant, cocky, and overly confident and felt that they had enough talent and skill that they could take games off and relax and only play when they needed to. He had lost his hunger to win another championship, and that in turn rubbed off on the entire team. I'm not saying it was his fault entirely, because Rasheed Wallace and the rest of the team had a lot to do with as well (also losing Larry Brown didn't help any either).

AI is one of the league's oldest veterans and an all time great player. His years are numbered now and he doesn't have much time left. He has had so much individual success and accomplishments throughout his career, but has yet to win the ultimate prize: a title. You can say he isn't a team player and is a cancer, but he wants to win just as bad as anyone. He hasn't been on any great teams (Carmelo Anthony is not a complimenting player for him) and every team he has joined has gotten better with him. He wants to win a championship, and has that "hunger" factor in him. He has shown that he is willing to sacrifice his high stats in order for the team to play better. I'm sure if Curry had the guts to bench him and make him their 6th man (but still get big minutes like the Spurs would do with Manu Ginobili ) he would have accepted his role if it would help the team have more success. He is still one of the league's best scorers, he can pass very well, and has been making an effort on defense (though his size will always work against him).

Curry is only in his first year as head coach (not just with the Pistons, but first head coach job in his career; he's a rookie), and he still has lots to learn. However, I can tell just by listening to his comments and post game reports that he is trying his best to make the team have more success. Now we can't expect him to be the next Red Auerbach in his first year of head coaching, so it's not like he's going to make all the right moves right off the bat. I have faith that during the break, he'll be able to sit back and evaluate things and make better decisions on what to do. He will realize that he needs to get the team to focus more on defense and playing the whole through. He needs to find the right rotation that works, and use it for the rest of the season. He needs to start running more plays for Stuckey and let him get to the hoop like we know he can do so well. He even needs to consider benching AI instead of Richard Hamilton (because Rip works better with the starters and AI would be huge off the bench).

The one thing that needs to be done, that I'm not so sure is possible, is to get Rasheed to stop jacking up so many 3 point shots. No Pistons coach has been able to do this since Larry Brown, and it has been a major problem for Detroit. He is a great post player, and without him the Pistons don't have any inside presence on offense. Sure AI, Stuckey, and Prince can get to the rim but they don't have any post player who can score inside without Sheed. That's why teams can just sit back and pack the paint preventing the drives and turning us into a jump shooting team (which we are not). When he's hot he's unstoppable, but when he's cold he's terrible. Curry needs to man up and realize he runs this team, and not the players. He needs to stand up to Sheed and tell him to get back down in the paint where he belongs. I have no problem with him shooting about 5 shots per game from outside (maybe a little more if he's shooting well that game) because it helps stretch the defense, but shooting 10+ and leading the league in 3pt attempts is not something we want from Sheed. I don't know if Curry will have the courage to step up to him and do this, but this is the ONLY thing that I'm not confident Curry will be able to do after the All Star break.

We also can't forget that even if we don't win it all this year we have an even better future ahead of us. Rodney Stuckey is only in his 2nd year and is already starting to become a very good point guard capable of running the point for us. He is only going to get better, and the best is yet to come from him. He has shown a lot of improvement on defense this year (a concern last year), and now I'm completely sold on him being our next floor general who can lead us to a championship. Jason Maxiell , Arron Afflalo , Amir Johnson , and Tayshaun Prince all have lots of years left in them and will become keys to our success. Also, if Sheed retires and/or leaves the Pistons at the end of this year, and  AI is not able to get us a championship and decides to either call it quits or go to a new in 2010, we will have tons of money to use in that star studded FA class in the summer of 2010.

So don't lose hope Pistons fans because there is light at the end of this dark tunnel we are in right now. It may be hard to see right now, but keep the faith. Don't worry about what all the haters say, because we don't need the support of the rest of the league. All that matters is what we know about our team, and that we keep our faith in them. We still have a shot at the championship this year (whether anyone realizes it or not), and we definitely have a very good future ahead of us with Stuckey and the 2010 FA class. Remember the 2004 championship season. So say it with me my Pistons brothers:

DEEEEEEEEEEEEEETTRROOOOOOOOOOIITT BAAAAAAAAAASSSSKKEEETTBAAAAAAAAAAAA
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted on: November 8, 2008 4:53 pm
Edited on: November 9, 2008 8:45 am
 

Detroit Pistons vs. Boston Celtics Preview

Round 1: Boston Celtics (5-1) at Detroit Pistons (4-1)


It's time for the first battle of the year between these two teams. Last year's Eastern Conference Finals teams and still the best two teams in the East. Anyone that watched these games last year knows how exciting and heated they were. Richard Hamilton and Ray Allen were always at each other’s throats, Rasheed Wallace and Kevin Garnett battling in the post, Paul Pierce and Tayshaun Prince playing out on the perimeter, and Chauncey Billups and Rajon Rondo battling at the point. Not to mention watching bench players like Jason Maxiell and Glen "Big Baby" Davis coming in and making an impact. All the games were decided in the final minutes, and stay intense all throughout the entire game. These were some of best games out of all the games in the last NBA season. The rivalry from the 80s between Bird with the Celtics and Isaiah and the Bad Boys with the Pistons seems to be back in full force now.

This game has added a new and interesting element now. Newly acquired Allen Iverson (traded from Denver Nuggets for Chauncey Billups, Antonio McDyess, and Cheikh Samb) will be playing his second game for the Pistons. He looks to be the guy who can get the Pistons back to the Finals, and the Celtics will be the team standing in their way. AI played very well in his first game. He scored 24 points on 50% field goal shooting and 11 for 13 at the free throw line. He also added in 6 assists and 1 steal to complete is first game in Detroit. Despite his play, the Pistons weren't able to defeat the Nets and suffered their first loss of the season. He has shown that he is willing to adapt to the Pistons style. He only shot the ball 12 times, and was passing the ball a lot in trying to be more of a distributor. He also was playing defense. Now, Devin Harris did go score a lot, but he was scoring on everyone, not just AI.

The Pistons are 4-1 at the top of the Central Division so far. Their only loss came to the Nets where Devin Harris exploded for 38 points. They have got off to a good start this year. All their players are continuing to play very good, but a few players have stepped so far this year. Tayshaun Prince has been the best player for the Pistons so far. He has 16.4 points per game, 7.0 rebounds per game, 1.2 blocks per game, 46.6% field goal percentage, and 58.3% 3-point percentage. He has continued to play very well on the defensive end, and is rebounding very well so far. He also is looking more consistent on the offensive end, being able to get to basket or hit the outside shot. Amir Johnson is the Pistons' starting center this year, and he has played very well so far. He has been contributing some on offense, but has mainly been a factor on defense. He has been able to use his athleticism to get rebounds and forcing turnovers. He won't be lighting up the stat sheet, but he will contribute a lot to this team.

The Celtics are leading the Atlantic Division at 5-1.Their only loss has come to the Pacers where they just seemed to an off game. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett continue to lead Boston with their great play. Pierce has 17.8 points per game, 8.3 rebounds per game, 1.3 steals per game, and 4.3 assists per game. KG has 15.7 points per game, 9.7 rebounds per game, and 1.3 steals per game. Ray Allen has also chipped in 14.7 points per game and 5.0 rebounds per game. Rajon Rondo, Leon Powe, and Kendrick Perkins have all been contributed very well to Boston as well.

Key Matchups of the game:

Leon Powe vs. Jason Maxiell

These two guys might not play head to head very much, but it will important to see which guy will come off the bench and contribute most to their team. Maxiell will be needed to provide tons of energy, rebounding, and defense. He needs to get a few highlight blocks and dunks to get his team pumped up. Powe will need to rebound and provide low post scoring. These will be the two key players coming off the bench for this game.

Allen Iverson vs. Rajon Rondo

Both have lots of speed and athleticism, and both will be at the point for their teams. It will be interesting to see if Rondo can keep AI from having a great game today. Even more interesting will be if AI can keep Rondo from scoring a lot as well.

Paul Pierce vs. Tayhaun Prince

The two wingmen will be battling all night long. Both will be their team's best perimeter defender, and it will be important to see who can slow down the other more. It will be fun to watch these guys battle outside and battle for rebounds. Very key matchup here.

Ray Allen vs. Richard Hamilton

This is probably the most fun matchup to watch. Former UConn guards will be in a tough battle with each all night. Every time these two play, they’re in each other's faces and fighting for position all throughout the game. There will be fouls called, and there will be 3-point shots made. It will be important to see which guy can impact their team the most.

Kevin Garnett vs. Rasheed Wallace

Battle of the big men. Sheed vs. KG is the most important matchup of the game. These two big men anchor their team in the post on offense and defense. They will fight for boards, they will battle for points, and they will see who can score the most points outside the paint.

 

It's going to be a great game to watch, so I suggest you drop change any plans you already have so you can watch this game. It's on at 6:00 pm ET Sunday, November 9th. Get ready for an Eastern Conference showdown at the Palace tomorrow night. And if everything goes right, my Pistons will win!

Posted on: November 3, 2008 1:54 pm
Edited on: November 3, 2008 3:51 pm
 

Allen Iverson to Detroit

Allen Iverson to the Detroit Pistons for Chauncey Billups, Antonio McDyess, and Cheikh Samb


Joe Dumars has kept his promise of shaking things up, and really meant it when he said no one was safe. He traded the 2004 NBA Finals MVP in Billups, who has been leading the helm in Detroit for 6 years now and has helped the Pistons get to the Eastern Conference Finals every year. However, the last couple years he has had a mentality that has seem to rub off on most of the Pistons team. They have seem to think they can only play when they feel like it, and they have enough talent to win when the want to.....with our without the coach's help. He is still a great PG, but nothing like he was in 2004.

Allen Iverson is one of the league's best scorers. He can score from anywhere on the court at any time. He knows how to drive, he knows how to shoot jumpers, and he knows how to shoot 3's. He may not be able to defend other shooting guards because of his height, but he can play very good defense on the point guards who are closer to his size. He also has the ability to pass the ball very well when he wants to. On his previous teams (76ers and Nuggets), he wasn't asked to do this much so he might not have been able to show it very well. However, if the Pistons need him to he can distribute the ball sometimes. He is a shoot first PG, but can pass very well.

Now you can't overlook Tayshaun Prince's ability to pass as well. Prince has become a point forward at times for the Pistons recently. He can bring the ball down, and handle it very well. If they want A.I. to focus on scoring, they can have Prince worry about distributing and handling the ball. He can do very well in this role if the Pistons need him. Tayshaun might not put up great numbers, but he is a very good player that can contribute big time to a championship team.

Losing Antonio McDyess does hurt; there's no lying about that. He has provided good defense and offense down in the low post for us. He was a constant double-double threat in the starting lineup or off the bench. There is a chance Denver will buyout his contract and he could sign back with Detroit. However, we still have players like Amir Johnson, Jason Maxiell, and Kwame Brown that can step up and make up for his loss. Maxiell and Amir are a year older (and wiser) now. Both can provide very good defense, rebounding, and energy. Kwame might not be a great player, but he can play when the Curry calls upon him.

Rodney Stuckey will no doubt get more playing time, and be looked at to come in and be the floor general and provide some leadership off the bench. He has shown in last years playoffs that he is improving quickly, and he can be great off the bench for the Pistons.

The money situation has also improved. The Pistons no longer have to worry about Chauncey's contract, and Iverson's expires this year. That is a big plus in the financial area for Detroit.

Iverson looks to bring veteran leadership and great scoring to the Pistons. At 35 years old, he is still very quick and very agile. He can play 38-40 minutes every game (has only played under 39 minutes one time in his entire career). He is not a selfish player as some might think. He has been working very well with the rest of the offense in Denver. Their defense was just horrible, and that is what made the team look worse. When in Philly, he had to no one to work with. The best player on the 2001 roster (when took the 76ers to the NBA Finals) was Dikembe Mutombo at 34 years old! Now if he was able to take that team to the NBA Finals, what do you think he can do with the Pistons?

A.I. looks to finally get the NBA championship title he deserves. Like Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen of last year, he is a Hall of Fame player who has been stuck on teams that couldn't contend, but now he goes to a team that has a great shot at the NBA championship.
Posted on: October 30, 2008 6:22 pm
 

Who has more to prove?

There are 3 main guys who have the pressure on them in Detroit. The whole team has something to prove, and show everyone they are still able to compete for a title. However, these 3 guys will have the most to prove and most likely the most pressure on them to get the Pistons back to the NBA Finals.

Michael Curry


He is filling in at head coach for Flip Saunders a.k.a. "Slip" The Pistons have been to the Finals 7 straight years now, but haven't won a championship since 2004, and haven't even been to the NBA Finals since 2005. The players have become too arrogant and lazy. They think they can slack off and only play when they want to. They believe that their talent is enough to get the team a championship, and they believe they are above the coaches. Curry has to be the guy that steps in and runs this team. He can't let the players slack off and try to do what they want to do. They need a leader in Curry to get them back to the Finals and win another championship. He has to be able to make these guys listen to him, and make them respect him. In other words, they need him to be more like Larry Brown and less like "Slip" Saunders. This will be a big key factor into whether the Pistons can make another title run this year or not.

Rasheed Wallace

There have been reports and rumors that this is his last year. Whether they are true or not, his contract runs out at the end of the year. At 34 years old, Sheed doesn't have a lot of time left. This will most likely be his last year to contend for the title unless he pulls a Bill Walton. Sheed has to step up big time this season. He can't let his emotions run wild; he has to be able to control himself and play like he cares every night. He has to be one of the team leaders and set an example to everyone else. He has to work with his coach (Curry) and be able to give everything he's got left this year to get the Pistons another title. He has to shut out the refs and any one else that gets his emotions going. He just has to concentrate on playing great basketball for the Pistons. He will one of their key players (if not the key factor) in determining whether the Pistons are able to get back to the NBA Finals.

Amir Johnson

As of right now Amir is the starting center. This move was made by Curry so that Sheed could go back to his normal position of power forward. This puts a lot of pressure on the young guy. He has to step up and play against other post players that are have more experience and/or are much bigger and stronger. Now he has the height, but he is still a skinny guy. Most big men he will go against will have a good amount of weight on him. He will have to go out every night and prove that he can hold his own against the opponent's big men. He will have to prove to his coaches, his teammates, and the fans that he has what it takes to be a starter. He has Kwame Brown and Jason Maxiell (would start at PF and Sheed would have to go back to center) breathing down his neck, waiting to get their chance as a starter if Amir can't get the job done. He's not going to be Ben Wallace for them, but he has to play his role very well and contribute on defense and offense for this team. Sheed can't be the Pistons only post threat (on either offense or defense), so Amir has to step and be that other guy to help out.


So who do you think has the most to prove this season? I think all 3 have tons to prove, and I think it's a tie between Sheed and Curry for the most to prove. I'd love to hear what you guys think.
Posted on: September 18, 2008 3:33 pm
 

2008/2009 NBA Awards Predictions

MVP - Dwyane Wade

This is his year to shine, and he will relish the opportunity. He has Shawn Marion and Michael Beasley to be his wing men that will help him get the Heat back into the playoffs in the East. If you didn't get this feeling like me from seeing him play in the Olympics, than you didn't watch the Olympics. He is back at full health and will stay there all season long. Watch him pull off once spectacular year and earning himself his 1st MVP.

Rookie of the Year - Greg Oden


Yes, I said Greg Oden. Now be honest, who forget Oden is still a rookie because he didn't play all of last year? It's okay to admit if you did. He is a monster on the boards, and shot blocking machine. He has some solid moves in the paint as well, but his scoring is one thing that he will need to improve on at the NBA level. I'm saying he pulls down double digit rebounds over the whole year, and gets around 2 blocks a game as well. Some where around 10-15 point per game too.

Defensive Player of the Year - Josh Smith

This will be the year he explodes. Josh has been a top defender for the last couple of years, but he hasn't been able to put himself at the top yet. I believe this is the year he puts himself at the top. He is going to average a double double this year with points and rebounds, and he will average over 2 blocks and 2 steals. Not only that, he will help the Hawks make back to back playoff appearances.

6th man award - Manu Ginobili

Now Ginobili should be starting so this isn't really fair. Even with a bum ankle he can win this 6th man award because he will be playing starters minutes and put up lots of good numbers.

"Real" 6th man - Jason Maxiell

By "real" I mean an actually 6th man. Unlike Ginobili, Maxiell most likely won't start and get starter minutes. He will be part of the "Zoo Crew" for the Pistons and continue to improve on his game as he has year after year. Him and Rodney Stuckey will be huge off the bench for the Pistons. He will come in to give them lots of energy and a post presence on offense and defense. He should be starting by next year if not sometime this year.

Most Improve Player - Randy Foye or Devin Harris

I couldn't decide here. I believe both of these guys will have huge years, and improve a lot from last year. Harris was better last year, but I believe he will still be better than Foye this year as well. However, I believe Foye will finally start playing like the PG the Timberwolves have been expecting out of him since they drafted him. Harris will be starting for the Nets, should put himself into the Top 10 PGs after this year, and Foye will put himself right outside that Top 10.

Coach of the Year - Mo Cheeks

The 76ers made the playoffs last year as the 6th seed. Mo Cheeks was a huge part of that and would have won this award last year if it wasn't for Byron Scott and the Hornets. Now this year he will have Elton Brand and a young team that just added some more experience under their belts. Look for Cheeks to lead the 76ers into the playoffs yet again, but this time they will be a higher seed (Top 4).
Posted on: May 19, 2008 3:18 pm
 

ECFs Pistons vs. Celtics: The Final Showdown

It's finally time for the 2008 Eastern Conference Finals. It's exactly what we've been waiting for all year long: Detroit Pistons vs. Boston Celtics. The #1 and #2 teams in the in the East, and in the regular season as well. Also, the two best defensive teams throughout this year. They played 3 times throughout the regular season, with the Pistons winning the first game in Boston, and the Celtics winning the next two games in Detroit and Boston. All 3 were very exciting and close games, and were some of the best games this season. These two teams were just destined to face each other in the ECFs this year, and now it's finally time to see them go at it.

This is the Pistons 6th straight ECF appearance, but it's the Celtics 1st since 2002. The Celtics and the Pistons have a lot of great player matchups that make the series even more entertaining:

Kevin Garnett vs. Rasheed Wallace - Both are their teams best player and have been been of the team's leaders and heart of the team. They can both post up in the paint very well, and both play good defense. Rasheed has the long range shot, but Garnett has the mid range shot. They have had had some good and bad games in this year's playoffs, and it will probably be the same in this series as well.

Rip Hamilton vs. Ray Allen - Battle of the UConn guards. These two played very physical on each other in each game this regular season. They are always keeping the game heated, and are both great shooters. Rip has been shooting great in the playoffs, but has been turning the ball over too much. Ray hasn't been all that great so far, but will definitely heat up when he goes against Rip.

Tayshaun Prince vs. Paul Pierce - This will be the most important and most interesting matchup of this series. They have both been the best and most consistent players for their teams so far this year in the playoffs. Pierce definitely has the edge on the offensive side of the ball, but Prince is the better defender. Both have stepped up their game on the opposite side of the ball that they are not known for being strong at (Pierce stepping up on D, and Prince stepping it up on O). Keep your eye on this one folks.

Jason Maxiell vs. Kevin Garnett - Not really one you would expect, but will definitely interesting to see what happens when these two face off. In the regular season games, Maxiell defended Garnett very well and got him frustrated a lot. Maxiell will be very physical with him all series long, and Garnett should be ready for it this time. I think in the regular season he was surprised a smaller defender good guard him so well, but now he will know what to expect from Maxiell.

Chauncey Billups, Rodney Stuckey, and Lindsey Hunter should be able to have their way with Rajon Rondo, Sam Cassell, and Eddie House at the point. This a matchup where the Pistons should be able to just dominate at, but all the other ones will be very close and great matchups.

I have been saying it all season long that the East will win the title this year, and I still stand by that. So (to me) this is the pre-battle for the NBA title this year. Whoever wins out of the Pistons/Celtics will be the NBA champions this year; I'm sure of that. The Celtic have been struggling big time on the road, going 0-6 thus far, but they have been dominant at home. No team has even won the title without winning at least 3 road games. The Pistons are one of the best road teams as well, and can easily win on the road just as well as at home. I know there is a first time for everything, but it's not looking good for the C's if they can't win on the road. They won't be able to play like they did against the Hawks and Cavaliers if they want to win this series. I'm sure they will step it up though because their "Boston 3 Party" really wants that title. I expect it to go no less than 6 games, and will most likely go 7.

I just can't wait for Game 1 tomorrow. It's the Final Showdown in the East!
 
 
 
 
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