Here’s what yours truly had to say about the Pistons’ fortunes this season back in August and September  with a few of their ardent and vociferous fans at the otherwise terrific site, DetroitBadBoys.com, concerning:
i. The continued development of Rodney Stuckey
ii. The proper role for Will Bynum
iii. The proper role for Rip Hamilton
iv. The proper role for Ben Gordon
iv. The proper role for Ben Wallace
v. The proper role for Jason Maxiell
vi. The proper role for Charlie Villanueva
vi. The proper roles for Jonas Jerebko, Austin Daye, DaJuan Summers and Deron Washington
vii. The proper decisions for John Kuester
viii. The effect of a 3-guard rotation on Team Cohesion
ix. The effect of Team Cohesion on Winning [i.e. Efficency, Effectiveness and Team Excellence]
Yes, it’s a huge thread with 651 comments [!] … many of which are immature and inane by a certain sub-set of Pistons fans active on that site … but, if you take the time to parce out what was actually said there by yours truly, you should be able to see just how accurate many of those initial comments have been to this point in the Pistons’ season.
Since that time there have been several other articles and discussions concerning the Pistons’ plight this season, at the guard positions, in a variety of different locations on-line:
Could Will Bynum become the Detroit Pistons’ franchise player? [Nov 18]
Bynum or Stuckey? [Nov 19]
Will Bynum > Rodney Stuckey [Nov 20]
Bynum gets love, Stuckey gets none [Nov 25]
Detroit: Stuckey or Bynum – who should start? [Nov 25]
culminating in yesterday’s declaration by the NBA:
Stuckey the East’s Player of the Week
If the Pistons’ long term goal is to eventually regain their former perch at the very top of the Eastern Conference, then, what they’ll continue to do this season is … exactly what yours truly said in the “It’s contagious” thread,
because when a lead guard like Rodney Stuckey [PG, 6-5] gets an opportunity to play the game in this way alongside other elite level performers like:
GUARDS and FORWARDS
Rip Hamilton [OG, 6-7], Ben Gordon [OG-PG, 6-3], Tayshaun Prince [SF, 6-9], Jonas Jerebko [SF, 6-9], Austin Daye [OG-SF, 6-10], Dajuan Summers [PF, 6-9] and Deron Washington [SF-OG, 6-7]
POWER FORWARDS and CENTERS
Ben Wallace [C, 6-9], Jason Maxiell [PF, 6-7], Charlie Villanueva [PF, 6-10], Kwame Brown [C, 7-0] and Chris Wilcox [PF-C, 6-9]
his team has a chance to become a dominant force for years to come, in the NBA, with the benefit of Top Notch coaching and personnel management.
Clearly defining the proper roles for your team’s 2 Point Guards [i.e. I. The Starter; and, II. The Primary Back-up] within an almost exclusively 3-guard rotation, at the Point and Off Guard positions, is a MAJOR COMPONENT of building an elite level squad, when:
* One of your MAIN COGS is an expensive free agent signee, like Ben Gordon, who just happens to be 6-3, 205, and a Combination Guard that can stretch the defense with long distance 3′s and by creating high percentage shots off the bounce, either, for himself or his teammates;
* Another of your MAIN COGS is a seasoned [and wily] veteran, like Rip Hamilton, who is an expert at moving without the ball in his hands and scoring within the mid-range area of the floor; and,
* The 3rd of your MAIN COGS is a terrific young stud, like Rodney Stuckey, with good size and physicality, plus the ability to [A] drive the ball to the bucket and score, [B] convert free throw attempts into points scored, [C] knock down open jump-shots, [D] create high percentage shots for teammates, and [E] Defend and Rebound his own position, in an elite level manner.
The Pistons have now won 5 games in a row, and 6 of their last 7, overall; including 2 solid home-court victories against Atlanta [17-6/.739; 2nd, Southeast] and Denver [17-7/.708; 1st, Northwest].
A healthy Rip Hamilton [OG] is now back in the starting line-up, beside Rodney Stuckey [PG].
It is going to be very interesting to see what John Kuester proceeds to do with a healthy Ben Gordon [OG-PG] and Will Bynum [PG], when each one is ready to return to the Pistons’ regular rotation.
If he slots Gentle Ben [OG-PG] into the rotation as Detroit’s #3 guard, in support of the Stuckey [PG]/Hamilton [OG] pairing … and, alongside of a Maxiell [PF]/Wallace [C] front-court tandem, with support from Villanueva and Brown, and a Small Forward split between Jerebko, Daye and an eventually healthy T-Prince … then LOOK OUT [!], because the Pistons will be joining the Hawks as the “next best two teams” in the EC this season, on the heels of the Celtics, Magic and Cavaliers.
If he does not do this, however, and, instead, simply returns to using 3 [or more] Point Guards [i.e. Stuckey, Bynum, Gordon, and Atkins], on a regular basis, or using Rip Hamilton frequently at the SF position, in a “small” line-up, or using a 4-guard [or more] rotation, at the PG and OG positions [i.e. Stuckey and Hamilton; Bynum and Gordon; Player X and Atkins], etc., then, unfortunately, the Pistons will continue to flounder this season, hovering about the .500 mark and performing in an inconsistent manner.
High End teams in the NBA have Quality Depth throughout their roster.
One of the other distinguishing characteristics of these teams, however, is that they are each intelligent enough to pare their rotation down to a “working group” of only 7, 8 or 9 [max.] players; with the rest being able to accept their fate and their proper lesser roles, as reserves, this season.
The first Moment of Truth this season is about to arrive for the Pistons.
How John Kuester chooses to handle it will become a defining moment of his tenure as the head coach for their team.
Rip Hamilton praises Pistons coach John Kuester, team’s pluck