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Schedules

NFL: 9/22

DETROIT           27

WASHINGTON     20

NFL: 9/29

DETROIT           40

CHICAGO            32

NFL: 10/6

DETROIT              9

GREEN BAY       22

NFL: 10/13

DETROIT           31

CLEVELAND         17

NFL: 10/20

CINCINNATI (4 - 2) at DETROIT (4 - 2)

1:00pm ET

-----------------------

MLB: 10/19

MICHIGAN ST.  14

PURDUE               0

MLB: 10/12

MICHIGAN           40

PENN ST.           43

NCAAF: 10/26

INDIANA (3 - 3) at MICHIGAN (6 - 1)

3:30pm ET

NCAAF: 10/26

MICHIGAN ST. (6 - 1) at ILLNOIS (3 - 2)

3:30pm ET

------------------------

NHL: 10/12

DETROIT            5

PHILADELPHIA      2

NHL: 10/14

DETROIT             3

BOSTON               2

NHL: 10/15

DETROIT             2

COLUMBUS           1

NHL: 10/17

DETROIT             4

COLORADO           2

NHL: 10/19

DETROIT (6 - 2 - 0) at PHOENIX (4 - 2 - 0)

9:00pm ET

-----------------------

NBA PRESEASON: 10/10

DETROIT           107

MIAMI             112

NBA PRESEASON: 10/12

DETROIT          99

BROOKLYN         88

NBA PRESEASON: 10/16

DETROIT            81

CHICAGO         96

NBA PRESEASON: 10/17

DETROIT            84

CLEVELAND     96

NBA PRESEASON: 10/20

DETROIT (2 - 3) at ORLANDO (1 - 3)

6:00pm ET

-----------------------

 NCAAB: 4/8

NCAA FINALS

MICHIGAN          76

LOUISVILLE     82

NCAAB: 3/29

NCAA SWEET 16

MICHIGAN ST.    61

DUKE                71

-----------------------

MLB PLAYOFFS: 10/15

ALCS GAME 3

DETROIT             0

BOSTON            1

MLB PLAYOFFS: 10/16

ALCS GAME 4

DETROIT           7

 

BOSTON 3

 

MLB PLAYOFFS: 10/17

 

ALCS GAME 5

 

DETROIT 3

 

BOSTON 4

 

MLB PLAYOFFS: 10/19

 

ALCS GAME 6

 

DETROIT 2

 

BOSTON 5

 

Thursday
Jul252013

Pistons Add Athleticism, Shooting, and Leadership in Free Agency:

The Pistons added athleticism and versatility when they signed F Josh Smith.The Detroit Pistons have a win-now attitude even though they have a lot of young talent still developing. New owner, Tom Gores, has made it quite clear that he wants to at least make it to the playoffs this season and the job of Joe Dumars, the Pistons president of basketball operations, is most likely on the line. In an attempt to improve, the Pistons have looked at the possibility of trading for SF Rudy Gay of Toronto, PG Rajon Rando of Boston and/or PG Eric Bledsoe of the LA Clippers. With over $20 million in cap space, the Pistons decided to use a little of it by signing PF/SF Josh Smith of the Atlanta Hawks to a 4-year $54 million contract. Smith was arguably the third best free agent on the market behind C Dwight Howard and PG Chris Paul. Smith (6’9” – 225lbs.) averaged 17.5 points, 8.4 rebounds, 4.2 assists, 1.8 blocks, and 1.2 steals last season. The 27-year-old has tremendous athletic ability and plays on both ends of the court. By looking at his defensive statics and adding the fact that he can potentially guard four different positions, it’s easy to see how valuable he is defensively. The big problem with Smith is his shooting. The Pistons signed Smith to play the small forward position and be on the court at the same time as PF Greg Monroe and C Andre Drummond. But to effectively give those two big men enough room to work down low, you need shooters that can stretch the floor…Smith is not that type of player. He does like to shoot from long distance but not with any great accuracy (30.3% on 201 3-point attempts last season). There will be many times that Monroe or Drummond will be on the bench with foul trouble or just getting a rest, and the Pistons can slide Smith down to the power forward position, which is a more suited spot for him. The addition of Smith does make the Pistons more athletic, and that could be enough to push the Pistons into the playoffs.

The next move the Pistons made was re-signing PG Will Bynum (6’0” – 185lbs.) to a 2-year $5.75 million contract. The 30-year-old has been with the Pistons the past five seasons primarily as a backup point guard. Bynum had a career year last season averaging 9.8 points and 3.6 assists backing up Brandon Knight and Jose Calderon. With Calderon signing with Dallas, it became even more important for the Pistons to bring Bynum back to provide a little veteran leadership for third-year starting PG Knight.

Next the Pistons signed SF Luigi Datome (6’9” – 220lbs.) to a 2-year $3.75 million contract. The 25-year-old was the MVP of the Italian League last season, in which he averaged 16.6 points and 5.8 rebounds per game for Virtus Roma. With the Pistons in need of perimeter shooters, Datome is a nice addition as is considered to be the top European free agent and one of the best shooters in the Italian League- he shot 47% from the field (41% from 3-point land) and 92% from the free throw line. While not a great defender, Datome is a good player with good athleticism. He should give the Pistons a nice scoring option off the bench.

Fan-favorite Chauncey Billups is back with the Pistons to help provide leadership and championship experience.Finally, the Pistons brought a champion back to Motown. The Pistons have announced that they have signed PG Chauncey Billups (6’3” – 210lbs.) to a 2-year $5 million contract. Mr. Big Shot, as he was called during his 6-year stint with the Pistons (2002 – 2008), was traded at the start of the 2008 – 2009 season to Denver for SG Allen Iverson. The trade was made to provide more scoring through Iverson, but also to allow the Pistons to transition Rodney Stuckey into the starting role at point guard. The plan did not work out so well for the Pistons as Iverson averaged 17.4 points per game (down from the 27.7 points per game that he had been average for his career) and Stuckey never really developed into the point guard the Pistons were hoping for. Now back with the Pistons, the 36-year-old Billups will be looked upon to provide veteran leadership. Billups, who was always known more as a combo guard than a traditional point guard, might also be looked upon to help develop Knight, who is also being viewed more as a combo guard. Billups should be able to teach Knight how to better realize when to look for a teammate rather than trying to force something that could easily result in a turnover.

All in all, the Pistons hope that bringing in the energy and athleticism of Smith, veteran savvy of Bynum, the shooting ability of Datome, and leadership and ability of Billups will be enough to get them back to the playoffs for the first time since 2008. Add in the additions of Caldwell-Pope and Mitchell in the draft, and the Pistons have a nice core of young players to build the franchise around and good depth to make a run. (Photos from Google Images)

Friday
Jun282013

Pistons Make the Smart Pick and Have a Solid Draft:

In the past three NBA Drafts, a player projected to be selected before the Detroit Pistons’ pick has fallen into their laps. With the surprise of PF Anthony Bennett going 1st overall to Cleveland and PF Cody Zeller going 4th overall to Charlotte, it looked as though the Pistons were going to be fortunate again. After the Sacramento Kings took SG Ben McLemore with the 7th pick, all three of the top point guards (Trey Burke, C.J. McCollum, and Michael Carter-Williams) were still on the board. While it had been reported that the Pistons were interested in drafting a point guard and moving current PG Brandon Knight to shooting guard, Detroit surprised everyone when they selected SG Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (6’6” – 204lbs.) out of Georgia.

SG Kentavious Caldwell-Pope gives the Pistons a guard with deep range that can help stretch the floor.The Pistons definitely had a need for a shooting guard with good size and deep range, and Caldwell-Pope certainly fits that description. Caldwell-Pope played under the radar in his two years at Georgia, but he is one of the best shooters in this year’s draft (43% from the field and 37% from 3-point range last season). KCP is a good athlete with a high basketball IQ, and he gives the Pistons the legitimate shooting guard that they haven't had since Richard Hamilton. KCP averaged 18.5 points and 7.1 rebounds per game on a very average Georgia team. With his quick release and range, KCP will help Detroit stretch the floor and provide a little more room for PF Greg Monroe and C Andre Drummond to work down low…something the Pistons haven’t had in a while. When the defender closes out on him, KCP can find the open man and deliver it with a good pass. KCP also plays both sides of the floor proving to be an excellent and willing defender. He still needs to work on his ball handling and mid-range game a little, but KCP is a hard worker willing to put in the time needed to continue to improve. If head coach Maurice Cheeks and the Pistons believe that they can mold Brandon Knight into a more effective point guard, Caldwell-Pope will give Detroit a nice weapon from the outside to continue to build with and around. (Photo from Google Images)

PF Tony Mitchell is an outstanding athlete that gives the Pistons a nice rebounder and shot-blocking defender off the bench.With the 37th pick, the Pistons took PF Tony Mitchell (6’9” – 236lbs.) out of North Texas. Mitchell is an outstanding athlete that was projected to be selected in the 1st Round. While Mitchell needs to improve his range as a shooter and his strength, he is an excellent rebounder averaging 9.3 rebounds per game in his two years at North Texas. He also does a nice job in transition and on the defensive end with the ability to block shots (2.85 per game) and guard multiple positions. Mitchell should become a nice rotation player for the Pistons behind Monroe and Drummond. (Photo from Google Images)

PG Peyton Siva is a scrappy defender that makes life miserable for opposing guards.With the 56th pick, the Pistons finally addressed the point guard position by taking PG Peyton Siva (6’1” – 181lbs.) out of Louisville. Siva is a quick, athletic guard that can blow by you with his speed. He sees the floor very well and finds the open man. While not a major scoring threat, Siva really shows his value as a distributor and as a lock-down defender. In his three years as a starter, Siva averaged only 10.5 points per game, but he also averaged about 5.5 assists and 2 steals each game. Siva needs to continue to work on his 3-point shot (29% in college) to take his game to the next level, but he brings great energy and should be at least a nice backup. (Photo from Google Images)

Overall, I would give the Pistons a solid “B” for their three picks. If Knight can become a more effective point guard, the selection of Caldwell-Pope looks even better and would bump the grade up to a B+. The addition of Caldwell-Pope and his range should allow Monroe and Drummond a little more freedom to work without the constant threat of being double-teamed. Mitchell’s athleticism and presence on defense, in the fast break, and especially on the boards will be a welcomed addition off the bench. Siva could be a terror off the bench for opposing point guards to have to deal with, especially if both PG Jose Calderon and PG Will Bynum leave in free agency.

Thursday
Jun272013

The Pistons Look to Add a Building Block in Tonight's NBA Draft:

The Pistons have their new head coach in place (Maurice Cheeks), and now they’ll look to add another building block to the franchise in tonight’s NBA Draft. With Top Ten picks the past three years, the Pistons have promising young nucleus of players in which to build around. And in all three of those drafts, the Pistons were able to select a player that fell from their initial draft projections (PF/C Greg Monroe at #7 in 2010, PG Brandon Knight at #8 in 2011, and C Andre Drummond at #9 in 2012). With the 8th pick in this draft, the Pistons can only hope that another gem falls yet again. So what players are the Pistons targeting?

Monroe and Drummond could potentially become one of the top big man tandems in the NBA, and so we can probably rule out the Pistons drafting another big man. That brings us to Knight, who was drafted two years ago to be the point guard of the future for the Pistons. Knight has a more of a shoot-first mentality that might fit better as a shooting guard than as a point guard, but Knight doesn’t possess the size to defend opposing shooting guards with regularity. Depending on where new head coach Maruice Cheeks sees Knight fitting better, the Pistons could be looking for a point guard or a shooting guard.  And since trading Tayshaun Prince to Memphis back in January, the Pistons also have a need at small forward. Here’s a look at the point guards, shooting guards, and small forwards that the Pistons could target with the 8th pick:

  • Trey Burke (6’1” – 187lbs.) out of Michigan was the National Player of the Year this past season. He helped lead the Michigan Wolverines to the National Championship game for the first time since the days of the Fab Five. Burke is a very strong and physical guard. He is a very good shooter off the dribble but is also good at finding the open man when he penetrates the lane. On defense, he has very quick hands for the steal and does a good job of staying between his defender and the basket. While a decent rebounder on the offense end, he is eager to get out on the fast break on the defensive end.
  • Michael Carter-Williams (6’6” – 184lbs.) out of Syracuse helped lead the Orangeman to the Final Four. Carter-Williams is a big point guard with great ball handling and court vision. Carter-Williams is very good and getting into the lane and dishing to the open man, but he also has a nice floater to keep defenders honest. On the defensive end, he uses his length to force turnovers by getting into a lot of passing lanes and stealing the ball. Because of his size, he is able to guard three different positions (point guard, shooting guard, or small forward) and does a nice job on the boards.
  • C.J. McCollum (6’3” – 197lbs.) out of Lehigh is somewhat of a combo guard. McCollum is an electric scorer with great range. He also does a very nice job rebounding the ball for his size. His size is better suited for the point guard position, but his ability to put the ball through the hoop makes him a great shooting guard prospect. On defense, he can create a lot of steals with his quickness. He has drawn a lot of comparisons to Damian Lillard of Portland or even Stephen Curry of Golden State.
  • Victor Oladipo (6’4” – 213lbs.) out of Indiana really improved his draft stock this past season. Oladipo is a very athletic guard that gives 100% every time he’s on the floor. He is an excellent defender and a terrific rebounder with great leaping ability. While he has improved his shooting, he still has work to do in this area. Oladipo is a great competitor, a good all-round player, and a great addition to any NBA team.
  • Ben McLemore (6’5” – 189lbs.) out of Kansas is one of the most physically gifted athletes in this draft. He uses his explosive leaping ability as a finisher at the rim and as an excellent rebounder. He is an excellent shooter with great range. The only potential downside is that he needs to improve his ability to create his own shot.
  • Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (6’6” – 204lbs.) out of Georgia is probably the best three-point shooter in the draft. He has a quick release on his shot and deep range and has the ability to put points on the board. Even though he is such a good shooter, he can find the open man when the defense closes out on him. He is also an excellent defender. The two areas that he needs the most improvement are in his ball handling and developing more of a mid-range game.
  • Otto Porter Jr. (6’9” – 198lbs.) out of Georgetown is one of the best prospects in this draft class and reminds me a little of Tayshaun Prince. Porter understands how to play the game- playing both sides of the floor, knowing when to take the shot and when to find the open man, and crashing the boards for rebounds. Porter has improved as a 3-point shooter, which makes him all the more dangerous on the offensive end. He has good ball-handling skills to be able to put the ball on the floor when the defender jumps out to take away the 3-point shot and shoot of the dribble. He also is a good passer and is able to find the open man, but he can be a little too unselfish at times. On the defensive end, Porter doesn’t take a break and does a very good job on locking on as a defender.
  • Anthony Bennett (6’8” – 240lbs.) out of UNLV is a combo forward. He has the body of an undersized power forward and can play down on the low post. He is also athletic enough and a good enough shooter from the outside to play at the small forward position. He reminds me of Jason Maxiell with a little more athleticism and a better shooting touch. Bennett is an explosive leaper and does a great job rebounding the ball. The biggest question with him: can he play small forward in the NBA?
  • Shabazz Muhammad (6’6” – 222lbs.) out of UCLA knows how to get to the basket and put the ball through the hoop. He is a good shooter with 3-point range and is a great rebounder. He has a lot of things going for him, but there are still some question marks. He didn’t seem to play hard all the time, so you might question how motivated he is. He likes to go left and struggles a little when you force him to his right. He also needs to improve his jumper off the dribble. There is a lot to like about Muhammad, but the question marks surrounding him are causing his stock to slip.

While the Pistons ultimately would love to have Porter fall to them, it’s not going to happen. Too many teams love the potential that Porter brings, and I don’t see him slipping past the 5th pick. The same can be said for Oladipo and McLemore. Their upsides are way too way to let any of the teams in the Top 5 think twice about any negatives in their game. There has been a lot of buzz surrounding McCollum, and I think he will be gone before the Pistons selection. While Bennett is a great athlete, I’m not sure how well he will adjust to guarding quicker small forwards. Caldwell-Pope could be an interesting selection, but I just don’t see the Pistons going that route. Plus there has been no talk linking him and the Pistons thus far. Muhammad is a very nice athlete, but there are just way too many question marks for the Pistons to take a chance on him. Ultimately, I think the pick will come down to if either Burke or Carter-Williams is still on the board when the Pistons pick, which at least of the two should be. Drafting Carter-Williams would allow the Pistons to move Knight from point guard to shooting guard. Carter-Williams’ length would then enable him to match up against the shooting guard position on defense. So while I love everything Burke brings, I think Michael Carter-Williams would be my pick if he is available. (Picture from Google Images)

Thursday
Jun132013

Pistons Hire Maurice Cheeks as New Head Coach:

As an assistant for the Thunder, Maurice Cheeks aided in successfully mentoring Russell Westbrook into an All-Star point guard.The Detroit Pistons finally have a new leading man. It has been announced that the Pistons have hired Oklahoma City assistant coach Maurice Cheeks as the new head coach. Cheeks is the fourth coach the Pistons have hired in the past six years. And what is expected from Cheeks that the previous three head coaches were unable to do? Cheeks is expected to turn this young team with potential into a playoff team.

Maurice Cheeks played fifteen seasons as a point guard in the NBA with Philadelphia, San Antonio, New York, Atlanta, and New Jersey. During that time, he was an All-Star four times and made the playoffs thirteen times. After his playing career was over, Cheeks became a coach. In his two previous stints as a head coach (in Portland from 2001 – 2005 and in Philadelphia from 2005 – 2008), Cheeks had a record of 284 – 286 in eight seasons with three playoff appearances- all resulting in a first round exit. Most recently, Cheeks has been the assistant to Scott Brooks in Oklahoma City and helped mentor Russell Westbrook into an All-Star point guard…something the Pistons hope he will also be able to do with Brandon Knight. And Knight is just one of the promising young players Cheeks inherits. Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond form what could be one of the best big man tandems in the NBA. The Pistons also have the 8th pick in this year’s draft to add another piece to build the franchise around. So while Cheeks does have his work cut out for him trying to turn this franchise that has gone 150 – 244 the past six seasons into a playoff team, he does have some promising young players in which to build around. The big question is: how long will he have to make the Pistons into a playoff team before the ax gets swung in his direction? (Picture from Google Images)

Saturday
Jun082013

Tigers' 2013 MLB Draft Results:

Round 1

#20 DETROIT- RHP Brandon Crawford, Florida University

Junior, 6'2" - 205lbs.

Competitive Balance Round A

#39 DETROIT- RHP Corey Knebel, Texas University

Junior, 6'3" - 210lbs.

Round 2

#58 DETROIT- LHP Kevin Ziomek, Vanderbilt University

Junior, 6'3" - 200lbs.

Round 3

#94 DETROIT- RHP Jeffrey Thompson, Louisville University

Junior, 6'6" - 245lbs.

Round 4

#126 DETROIT- RHP Austin Kubitza, Rice University

Junior, 6'5" - 220lbs.

Round 5

#156 DETROIT- RHP Buck Farmer, Georgia Tech University

Senior, 6'4" - 218lbs.

Round 6

#186 DETROIT- RHP Calvin Drummond, Arizona Christian

6'3" - 200lbs.

Round 7

#216 DETROIT- CF Connor Harrell, Vanderbilt University

Senior, 6'3" - 220lbs.

Round 8

#246 DETROIT- RHP Zach Reininger, Hill Junior College (TX)

Junior, 6'3" - 170lbs.

Round 9

#276 DETROIT- RHP Will LaMarche, Louisiana State University

Sophomore, 6'3" - 220lbs.

Round 10

#306 DETROIT- CF Kasey Coffman, Arizona State University

Junior, 6'3" - 210lbs.

Round 11

#336 DETROIT- RHP Chad Green, Louisville University

Junior, 6'3" - 210lbs.

Round 12

#366 DETROIT- 3B Dominic Ficociello, Arkansas University

Junior, 6'4" - 185lbs.

Round 13

#396 DETROIT- C Austin Green, San Diego University

Senior, 6'3" - 210lbs.

Round 14

#426 DETROIT- RF Ben Verlander, Old Dominion University

Junior, 6'4" - 190lbs.

Round 15

#456 DETROIT- OF Raphael Rhymes, Louisiana State University

Senior, 6'0" - 190lbs.

Round 16

#486 DETROIT- C Duncan McAlpine, Dallas Baptist University

Senior, 5'11" - 216lbs.

Round 17

#516 DETROIT- SS Steven Negron, Miami Dade Community College South

Junior, 5'8" - 175lbs.

Round 18

#546 DETROIT- RHP Jonathan Maciel, Cal State- Long Beach

Junior, 6'2" - 215lbs.

Round 19

#576 DETROIT- RHP Austin Pritcher, The Citadel University

Senior, 6'1" - 190lbs.

Round 20

#606 DETROIT- RHP Matt Wotherspoon, Pittsburgh University

Junior, 6'1" - 175lbs.

Round 21

#636 DETROIT- SS Curt Powell, Georgia University

Senior, 6'0" - 180lbs.

Round 22

#666 DETROIT- RHP Daryl Norris, Mississippi State University

Junior, 6'1" - 205 lbs.

Round 23

#696 DETROIT- LHP Tyler Alexander, Carroll High School (TX)

Senior, 6'3" - 180lbs.

Round 24

#726 DETROIT- RHP Chase Edwards, Hill Junior College (TX)

Junior, 6'1" - 185lbs.

Round 25

#756 DETROIT- RHP Johnnie Kirkland, Southeastern University

Senior, 6'1" - 200 lbs.

Round 26

#786 DETROIT- CF Adrian Castano, Benjamin Cordoza High School (NY)

Senior, 6'3" - 180lbs.

Round 27

#816 DETROIT- LHP Joe Mantiply, Virgina Tech University

Senior, 6'4" - 200lbs.

Round 28

#846 DETROIT- RHP Scott Sitz, Florida State University

Senior, 5'10" - 210lbs.

 Round 29

 #876 DETROIT- RHP Charley Sullivan, Alabama University

Senior, 6'1" - 195lbs.

Round 30

#906 DETROIT- LHP Ryan Beck, New Mexico State University

Senior, 6'4" - 230lbs.

Round 31

#936 DETROIT- RHP Brett Huber, Ole Miss University

Senior, 6'3" - 210lbs.

Round 32

#966 DETROIT- RHP Tanner Bailey, Ole Miss University

Senior, 6'6" - 235lbs.

Round 33

#996 DETROIT- 2B John Armstrong, Bishop Carroll Catholic High School (KS)

Senior, 5'10" - 175lbs.

Round 34

#1026 DETROIT- 2B Brad Holland, Mesquite High School (AZ)

Senior, 6'2" - 170lbs.

Round 35

#1056 DETROIT- LHP A.J. Pulk, Washington High School (IA)

Senior, 6'6" - 205lbs.

Round 36

#1086 DETROIT- CF Torii Hunter Jr., Prosper High School (TX)

Senior, 6'2" - 180lbs.

Round 37

#1116 DETROIT- LHP Nicholas Deeg, Lake Orion High School (MI)

Senior, 6'5" - 205lbs.

Round 38

#1146 DETROIT- C Harrison Wenson, Detroit Jesuit High School (MI)

Senior, 6'3" - 215lbs.

Round 39

#1176 DETROIT- CF Anfernee Grier, Russell County High School (AL)

Senior, 6'0" - 170lbs.

Round 40

#1206 DETROIT- 2B Taylor Johnson, St. Edwards University (TX)

Senior, 5'8" - 170lbs.