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 DETROIT PISTONS NEWS

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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Thu Mar 05, 2009 11:46 am

Thursday, March 5, 2009
Pistons: Notebook
Pistons' Iverson to miss at least 2 weeks
Guard has missed the past four games after twisting back; will come off bench upon return.
Ted Kulfan / The Detroit News

AUBURN HILLS -- The Pistons will be without guard Allen Iverson for at least two weeks.

The team announced Wednesday that Iverson will miss the next two weeks because of a sore back. He has missed the last four games with the injury after twisting his back after falling hard in a game against Miami last week.

Iverson has had back pain and stiffness since then.

The two weeks was requested by doctors at Georgetown University, where Iverson met with doctors Wednesday.

Doctors recommended he stop any basketball activities for two weeks. He will not travel with the team to prevent stress on his back.

The Pistons didn't practice Wednesday. Iverson will begin treatment for his back upon returning to Detroit today.

He is expected to return to Georgetown to be re-evaluated following the two-week conclusion. The Georgetown doctors have been in contact with Pistons medical personnel.

Iverson had an MRI done in Orlando, Fla., last weekend which showed no structural damage. A subsequent examination in Detroit confirmed that.

"We want him (Iverson) to be totally comfortable in how he feels," said coach Michael Curry, who reiterated Iverson will come off the bench when he returns. "It's about him getting to a comfort level with the diagnosis of what's going on with him."

Two weeks ago, Iverson complained of numbness in his legs. He continued to play, though appearing to be affected by the injury.

Opportunity arises

With Iverson out, Rodney Stuckey and Will Bynum have received increased playing time.

Stuckey had 17 points, four assists and four rebounds in 34 minutes during Wednesday's 100-95 victory over Denver. He had 22 points in 41 minutes in a victory last week in Orlando.

"One of the things we realized is he (Stuckey) needed the ball in his hands to be a little more comfortable," Curry said. "He's used to playing, and playing a lot, and having the ball in his hands. We like to have him have the ball in his hands."

What's been the difference for Stuckey?

"Just play my game," said Stuckey, who met with the coaching staff recently after enduring a slump along with the team. "Maybe as we were struggling, I was thinking too much and trying to figure out what I have to do. I wasn't playing my game."

Bynum played 13 minutes against Denver and had seven points and four assists, while doing a good job of penetrating and getting to the basket.

Home dominance

Curry felt beating the Nuggets at home, coming off a long road trip, was important.

"As big of a win, or bigger, than the two road wins (at the end of the trip) that we just had," Curry said." We owe it to the fans and ourselves to come home and take care of our home court."

You can reach Ted Kulfan at (313) 223-4606 or ted.kulfan@detnews.com


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Thu Mar 05, 2009 2:29 pm

Im glad LeBron and Mo are still healthy.
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Thu Mar 05, 2009 8:43 pm

Go Pistons
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Thu Mar 05, 2009 11:55 pm

Thursday, March 5, 2009
Pistons' Iverson says he'll accept bench role
Chris McCosky / The Detroit News

AUBURN HILLS -- Allen Iverson was at the Pistons' practice facility Thursday, doing his rehab work with team physical therapist Arnie Kander.

He did not speak directly to the media, but he did issue this statement through the team's media relations department:

"I'm disappointed that the soreness I'm feeling in my back is going to force me to miss two weeks of action. After talking with the doctors at Georgetown (Wednesday), they have told me that treatment and rest is the best course of action right now. Hopefully my back will heal and I'll be ready to go following this two-week period.

"My goal is to help this team win a championship and I've said that from the first day I arrived here in Detroit. I'm going to do whatever it takes to help us achieve our goals as a team, regardless if I'm starting or coming off the bench."


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Sat Mar 07, 2009 5:04 pm

GO IVERSON!


Be a team player
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Tue Mar 10, 2009 9:58 am

Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Pistons: Notebook
McDyess glad to be healthy
Forward has played more games with Pistons than any other team, despite knee problems.
Ted Kulfan / The Detroit News

AUBURN HILLS -- Antonio McDyess reached a personal milestone by playing Monday against Orlando.

McDyess played his 362nd game with the Pistons, in five seasons. That's one more than he suited up for with the Denver Nuggets in six seasons.

Surprised to hear about the statistic? McDyess was, but more because he's still playing and contributing to a team.

"If you asked me if I would be here so long, I probably would have said no," he said, if for no other reason, his severe knee injury in 2001 which put his career in jeopardy. "I'm just happy to have an opportunity to play this long, and with the Pistons. It's been great."

McDyess celebrated the milestone with 13 points and a season-high 18 rebounds.

He had three surgeries within an 18-month span after injuring his knee.

"It was painful, I wasn't sure I would play again," he said. "I wanted to (play), but my knee wasn't letting up. In the back of my mind, I really thought my career was over.

"But Joe (Dumars) took a chance. Joe took a chance on me when not a lot of people did, and it's worked out for the best."

Dumars, the Pistons president of basketball operations, who signed McDyess in the summer of 2004.

Dumars felt if McDyess could play lesser minutes and come off the bench, he would be a huge asset to the Pistons.

McDyess played the role so well, it's actually grown into a starting spot this season at age 34.

"He's been great here," said coach Michael Curry, who thinks McDyess could have been a potential Hall of Famer had the knee injury not occurred. "I'm happy he's been able to establish himself again and be injury-free.

"He's always prepared and plays hard. Everything you'd want of a player on your team, Dice does it."

McDyess' loyalty to the Pistons organization was evident early this season when he was traded to Denver along with Chauncey Billups for Allen Iverson.

But McDyess never reported, was waived, and returned to the Pistons when he could have signed with a contending team such as Boston or Cleveland.

"After the trade came down, he actually came back, he's been loyal to Detroit," Richard Hamilton said.

One thing for sure, McDyess isn't thinking what might have been had he been healthy.

"I've put that behind me, and put my career on another path," he said. "I try not to think about it, and what if, and things like that. I play for now."

Magic act

With this much evidence, it's fair to say the Pistons pretty much have their way against the Orlando Magic. With Monday's 98-94 victory, the Pistons have won 19 of their last 24 regular-season games against the Magic. The Pistons also have eliminated the Magic in the playoffs the past two seasons.

Detroit has the frontcourt depth to match up well against Orlando's Dwight Howard , plus it have been able to control Orlando's ability to make 3-point shots.

"It's like that in all sports," Curry said. "Styles make the matchups. I just think we match up well with them inside. Our interior guys have done a good job on Dwight Howard head up. You can't stop him head up, but you can make him work."

Can one team's success over the other get into an opponent's head?

"I don't know about that, but you'd hate to be on the opposite (losing) end," Hamilton said.

Washington excels

Deron Washington , the Pistons' second-round draft pick last season, helped Hoepel Halon win the Israeli Cup, the championship of Israel's top professional league. Washington averaged 15 points and 6.8 rebounds.

... Curry said there's nothing new on Allen Iverson (back), who is expected to be out for at least another week..

You can reach Ted Kulfan at (313) 223-4606, or ted.kulfan@detnews.com


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Tue Mar 10, 2009 10:00 am

Monday, March 9, 2009
Pistons
Wallace, Turkoglu out because of injuries
Ted Kulfan / The Detroit News

AUBURN HILLS -- The Pistons and Orlando Magic both lost key players in the first half of Monday's game to injuries.

Rasheed Wallace limped off the court with 52.5 seconds left in the first quarter because of a strained left calf. He came down awkwardly on his leg going after a defensive rebound.

The Pistons announced Wallace's return for the rest of the game is questionable.

Orlando forward Hedo Turkoglu left for the locker room with 3:28 left in the first half because of an apparent foot or ankle injury.

His status for the remainder of the game was not known.


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:48 pm

That Sucks
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Fri Mar 13, 2009 11:43 pm

Friday, March 13, 2009
Notebook
Pistons' Antonio McDyess still energized, even at 34
Chris McCosky / The Detroit News

AUBURN HILLS -- Assistant Dave Cowens walked slowly, head down, into the Pistons locker room following the punch-in-the-gut overtime loss to the New York Knicks on Wednesday.

But just as he was about to walk through the door, he turned and walked over toward the assembled media.

"I hope you understand how good Antonio McDyess is playing," he said. "It's an honor for me to watch him play. What he is doing right now is special, and I hope you understand that."

Has there been a player other than Ben Wallace the past 15 or so years who more embodies the credo of Pistons basketball than McDyess? Hustling, scrapping, fighting on every possession, regardless of the score or situation.

At 34, with three knee surgeries under his belt, he's playing more minutes and producing more results than he has since his early days in Denver.

"It's been every game," reserve guard Will Bynum said. "Dyess has been huge for us. It seems like he just keeps reaching into that fountain of youth."

McDyess had 21 points and a career-high 22 rebounds against the Knicks. No other Piston has posted a 20-20 game since the late Bison Dele in 1997. Wednesday's performance also came on the heels of an 18-rebound effort against the Magic.

"The ball just happens to be bouncing my way," said McDyess, who has averaged a double-double (12.5 points and 11 rebounds) the last 12 games. "(The Knicks) kept a small guy on me, and if I see a small guy on me, I am going to go to the boards. In my mind, if the ball comes off the board, I am going to get it, no matter who it is."

That go-to-the-glass mentality, however, resulted in one mistake Wednesday. With the game tied in the final seconds of regulation, McDyess assumed Rodney Stuckey was going to shoot. Instead, Stuckey passed to McDyess, and the ball hit off his chest for a turnover.

"The play happened so fast," McDyess said. "He saw me open, but I was going to the board. I should have been more aware on that."

Now, McDyess must put the performance aside as he prepares for another tough challenge tonight in Toronto. Without Rasheed Wallace (calf), McDyess will be called upon to guard a hot perimeter scorer in Andrea Bargnani.

"The good thing about it, Mike (Curry, coach) does a really good job of resting us," said McDyess, who played 41 minutes Wednesday. "We don't really do a lot of practicing, and that allows us to get our legs back up under us."

Sneaky Knick

Knicks guard Larry Hughes twice fooled 71-year-old referee Jack Nies late in the fourth quarter.

With 2:57 left and the Pistons leading by three, Hughes flopped, drawing an offensive foul on Richard Hamilton . Nies was looking under the basket and away from the play, and he seemed to react to Hughes on the ground.

Then, with 10 seconds left, Nies ruled Hamilton fouled Hughes behind the 3-point line. Replays showed Hughes kicked his legs out to enhance the contact.

"I wasn't sure if he was going to foul me, but I had a pretty good look if he didn't contest the shot," Hughes said. "Once he got close enough, though, I did draw a little contact on my own just to make sure I would get the call."

Curry's stance

Curry defended his decision not to foul early on the Knicks' final possession.

With a three-point lead, the Knicks had a final possession that started with 14.7 seconds left. Had the Pistons fouled quickly, the worst-case scenario would have been a one-point lead and the ball with less than 14 seconds left.

"I didn't want to foul," he said. "We were up three and if we play solid defense, make them take a tough shot and even if they hit a 3-point shot, we still can call timeout and take the last shot."

You can reach Chris McCosky at (313) 222-1489 or chris.mccosky@detnews.com


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Sun Mar 29, 2009 9:43 pm

Sunday, March 29, 2009
Pistons
Iverson returns, Wallace still out for Pistons
Chris McCosky / The Detroit News

AUBURN HILLS -- Coach Michael Curry resorted to psychological tactics in his effort to coax Rasheed Wallace and Allen Iverson back onto the court.

It half-worked.

"Those guys are going to be in uniform, and I am only going to ask them at the end of (pregame) warm-ups if they can go," he said. "Maybe being in uniform, going through warm-ups, their palms get to sweating and the heart starts beating faster, maybe that will entice them to get out there a little faster.

"Maybe there's a little strategy to the madness."

It worked on Iverson, who told Curry he was ready to return after missing 16 games with a sore back.

Iverson stepped up his pregame routine, working up a pretty good sweat. Apparently, the back loosened up enough to allow him to give it a shot.

Wallace still was a no-go. He missed his 11th straight game with a sore left calf.


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:34 pm

Curry should not have to use such tactics to coax these guys

If Wallace wants to miss the rest of the season

Fine

Cut his ass from the team
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:35 pm

Sign a player from the D League or CBA

I am sure they would love to put on an NBA jersey
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Thu Apr 02, 2009 1:39 am

Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Chris McCosky
Commentary: Allen Iverson's only concern is himself

NEWARK, N.J. -- It was a bizarre scene in the Pistons' locker room Tuesday night following another fourth-quarter meltdown and the subsequent 79-73 loss in Cleveland.

Rasheed Wallace, who picked up his 16th technical foul and will be suspended for Wednesday's game against the Nets, sat silent in front of his locker, though a combustible mixture of frustration, anger and resentment was roiling inside of him.

Wallace said referee Bennie Adams gave LeBron James the benefit of what Wallace calls a "stupid-star call," but he also knows that in picking up the technical foul, he put his team in a bad position for Wednesday's game.

"That's what you get for speaking the truth," he said, a PG-13 version of his actual quote.

At least his frustration was somewhat team-related. That wasn't the case on the other side of the room, where Allen Iverson, without being prompted, launched into another self-centered rant about his limited playing time.

Here's what Iverson said:

"How many minutes did I play? It seemed way, way, way less than that. Eighteen minutes? Come on, man. I can play 18 minutes with my eyes closed and with a 100-pound truck on my back. It's a bad feeling, man. I'm wondering what they rushed me back for? For that?

"It's a bad time for me mentally."


There are so many things wrong about what he said, the least of them being the 100-pound truck. What is that, a Tonka toy?

Rushed him back? He left the team Feb. 26. Hardly anybody saw him again until last week. He didn't do one single basketball-related exercise for a month. So he comes back, clearly rusty, clearly not in game shape, and he complains about playing 18 minutes on the front end of a back-to-back.

Unbelievable. Then he has the audacity to follow-up his rant by saying he doesn't want to vent, that he's trying to stay positive and focus on the big picture. The statement loses credibility when it comes after he's already vented.

Iverson keeps saying things like, "because of who I am," and, "a person with my resume and all the things I've done." The issue isn't what he's done in the past, it's what he's done as a Piston, and that has been not much.

The sooner he realizes that he's not the same guy, that he's 33 and out of shape, the better off he will be. He didn't play horribly Tuesday, but he did what he's done pretty much all year -- make critical mistakes at critical times.

He triggered an 11-2 run in the fourth, hitting three shots and setting up another score. But that was the extent of his positive play.

The possession after he scored to put the Pistons up 69-67, he made a mistake that contributed to James' pivotal three-point play. Will Bynum was running the offense and the play was designed for Iverson to get the ball off what they call a zipper cut, where he cuts from the baseline up the middle of the lane toward the top of the key.

Iverson didn't cut hard enough to get separation from the defender and Bynum couldn't make the pass. Instead of working to get open, Iverson just stopped. Wallace was the second option for Bynum and he was being a statue, as well.

They hung Bynum out to dry and James poked the ball away from him and raced in for the bucket and foul. The Pistons never recovered from that.

How many times is Iverson going to dribble into a crowd and either fall down or pass the ball wildly out of bounds? How many free throws is he going to miss? How many different ways can the Pistons junk up their defense to protect him?

For him to complain about his minutes afterward was truly a window into his character.

And here's another troubling part: His minutes aren't ever going to be what he wants. He's not going to play 35-plus minutes for this team. He doesn't deserve them and the Pistons sure don't need to put him out there to campaign for his next contract.

So what do they do? Let him go home and rest up for next season or deal with what could be a daily distraction for the next eight games? I vote the former.


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Thu Apr 02, 2009 1:39 am

applaud


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Thu Apr 02, 2009 6:43 pm

There may be an I in the name Iverson


But there ain't no I in team

Shame on you Allen
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Thu Apr 02, 2009 6:43 pm

Your selfish attitude is bringing the whole team down
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Sat Apr 04, 2009 11:34 am

Saturday, April 4, 2009
Pistons: Allen Iverson's done for season
Chris McCosky / The Detroit News

Auburn Hills -- The Allen Iverson project in Detroit is over.

The Pistons said Friday they were shutting the All-Star and former scoring champion down for the rest of the season.

"After talking with Allen and our medical staff, we feel that resting Allen for the remainder of the season is the best course of action at this time," Pistons president Joe Dumars said in a statement. "While he has played in our last three games, he is still feeling some discomfort and getting him physically ready to compete at the level he is accustomed to playing this late in the season does not seem possible."

Dumars had met with Iverson and his agent Leon Rose the last two days and the feeling was it was no longer in Iverson's or the Pistons' best interest for him to continue trying to play.

Iverson, who averaged a career-low 17.5 points, played in 54 games. The Pistons went 24-30 in games in which Iverson played.

Since his return from a back injury that forced him to miss 16 games, Iverson has complained about coming off the bench.

On Tuesday, after playing 18 minutes against Cleveland, he said, "Come on, man. I can play 18 minutes with my eyes closed and with a 100-pound truck on my back. It's a bad feeling, man. I'm wondering what they rushed me back for?"

Then after playing 17 minutes against New Jersey on Wednesday, he told reporters, "I'd rather retire before I do this again."


Iverson said his back was still bothering him and he was having trouble getting loose after sitting for most or all of the first quarter before coming into games.

Iverson, 33, will be a free agent this summer. He was the league's MVP in 2001, is a 10-time All-Star and a four-time scoring champ. He has the third-highest career scoring average (27.1) in NBA history and his 23,983 points ranks 16th in history.

He came to the Pistons on Nov. 3 in a trade that sent Chauncey Billups to Denver. For a variety of reasons, Iverson never quite fit inwith Detroit.

"We started Rodney Stuckey with Allen and I thought they played OK, and Rip was great off the bench," coach Michael Curry said Wednesday. "But as a team we played better with Rip and Stuckey in the backcourt."

Bringing Iverson off the bench was, as it turned out, the last resort -- and it failed.

"Any time you have a lot of change, your play is going to suffer," Curry said. "I just think guys hadn't blended well to different roles. It takes time, but it also takes willingness to accept those different roles to blend and make everything work. I don't think we got that acceptance."

Iverson never found any kind of rhythm this season. His shot was off (41.7 percent), his turnovers (2.56) were high and the Pistons had to trick up their schemes to protect him on defense.

"This was the craziest season I've ever gone through," said Iverson, who has said he wanted to play until he was 40.

He added: "I've been in this league 13 years and I have experienced things I have never thought I would ever have to experience."

Slam dunks

Rasheed Wallace will return to the lineup today in Philadelphia, but will be coming off the bench.

Per NBA rules, Wallace served a suspension Wednesday in New Jersey for receiving his 16th technical this season.

The game was only the second since Wallace returned from a left calf injury that caused him to miss 11 games.

chris.mccosky@detnews.com (313) 222-1489


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Sat Apr 04, 2009 2:53 pm

Hooray!
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:20 pm

Shame they can't trade his butt! I predict he signs elsewhere next season! Good!


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Mon Apr 06, 2009 6:32 pm

GoGetEmTigers wrote:
Shame they can't trade his butt! I predict he signs elsewhere next season! Good!


And then he will play like an ALL STAR
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Mon Apr 06, 2009 7:33 pm

Saturday, April 4, 2009
Allen Iverson, Pistons didn't blend well, Curry says
Ted Kulfan / The Detroit News

Philadelphia --Everyone involved tried, but Allen Iverson and the Pistons never quite meshed.

"It just didn't work; it didn't blend well," coach Michael Curry said before Saturday's 95-90 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. "There was a lot to do with guys changing roles and accepting different roles you have to play. It's unfortunate things didn't go as we thought they would."

The Pistons announced Friday that Iverson will sit out the rest of the season to rest his injured back.

"Hopefully, the time off will get his body back to top condition and be prepared for free agency," Curry said.

Curry believes his players now will be able to get comfortable in their new roles without the uncertainty involving Iverson. Arron Afflalo will back up Richard Hamilton and likely gain more playing time with the change. Afflalo played 7:33, scoring five points.

The fact Hamilton and Iverson played the same position and are the Pistons' two most aggressive offensive players made things difficult.

"We didn't play as well with them in the backcourt together early on," Curry said.

And that led to lineup changes, including a small starting lineup that had limited success.

Ultimately, Hamilton got put on the bench, but that experiment didn't work.

Said Hamilton: "It's tough because you want him (Iverson) out there. He's gives us a better chance to win. It's tough not having him out there."

Iverson was sent to the bench after he returned from missing time because of a back injury. That lasted three games before he complained he didn't feel comfortable coming off the bench, and the Pistons ultimately shut him down for the season.

Curry thinks Iverson, 33, still can be a force in the league.

"He's still a starter in this league; he's going to have a lot of success," Curry said. "This was a tough situation this year. As he gets older, he'll have to do different thing so his body can hold up for the rigors of an NBA season. He'll probably have to adapt a little bit, because I'm not sure how many teams will be centered just around him, but he's still a very capable player, and at times this year, he was really, really good for us.

"A lot of things maybe I could have done better, and the players could have done better, and maybe he could have done better. All of us, we haven't gotten it done this year. By no means do I want to make it seem it was just on Allen.

"The reality is we're in the position we're in, and we have to make the most of."

Big game

Sunday's game against Charlotte will have a playoff atmosphere. The Bobcats trail the Pistons by two games for the final spot in the Eastern Conference.

"It's big, we know it's a big game," Rodney Stuckey said. "Charlotte has been playing well, right in the race with us. It's going to be a big game."

The Pistons give much of the credit for the Bobcats' resurgence to coach Larry Brown, who guided the Pistons to the 2004 NBA championship.

"You see how they've been doing of late," Hamilton said. "L.B. is a great coach."

Slam dunks

The 76ers won the season series, 3-1, over the Pistons, the first time they've done so against Detroit since 2000-01.

"We have to try and improve each game and get better and get some momentum going into the playoffs," 76ers coach Tony DiLeo said.

... Kwame Brown had a good game, with 15 points and seven rebounds in 27 minutes. He had 10 of those points in the first quarter, establishing a low-post presence.

... Rasheed Wallace had eight points and six rebounds in 25 minutes off the bench. He returned after a one-game suspension Wednesday because of the number of technicals he has.

ted.kulfan@detnews.com


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:36 pm

Originally Published: October 1, 2009
Allen Iverson speaks out about Pistons

By Scoop Jackson
Page 2

[Editor's note: Page 2's Scoop Jackson spoke with Memphis Grizzlies guard Allen Iverson earlier this week while the team was in Alabama for training camp. Here's Part 2 of the interview, in which Iverson discusses retirement, a possible European payday, his relationship with the media and the Nuggets' reaching the Western Conference finals without him.]

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Some subjects don't even need an intro. This is one of them. It speaks for itself.

Scoop Jackson: Explain to me what the last year of your life has been like.

Allen Iverson: Since when?

Jackson: Since last November.

Iverson: When I was told about the trade to Detroit [from Denver], I was happy. I talked to Mo [uncle/manager Gary Moore]. We both felt like it was going to be good situation. [But] what I was told about going to Detroit was basically not the truth. I was told I was brought there for a reason, and the reason they said they brought me there never happened. When I got there, we all got along. I was just trying to fit in, even though I knew all of those guys. And I think Rip [Richard Hamilton] got hurt and we won like seven games in a row. So everything was good. Then 'Sheed [Rasheed Wallace] I think got hurt, then I got hurt and we lost a few games, and then I started hearing some talk. Talk about me coming off the bench and not starting.

Jackson: From where, the organization?

Iverson: Not within the organization. I was hearing this in the streets. Now I'm not really paying it too much attention, but I kept hearing it, so I'm saying there must be some truth to it. So I went and talked to them. And they told me, straight up, "Allen, we would never disrespect you or your career like that," by making me come off the bench. That's what they told me to my face. And after that, I never thought about it again. I just went back to playing. Then [not long after that] they came to me saying that they felt it would be in the best interest of the team if I came off of the bench behind Rip.

Jackson: They told you this?

Iverson: Yeah. And this is what got me, after that, they told me that if I didn't come off the bench -- the team was going to lie down on [not play with] me. And Scoop, when he told me that, that's when I felt that this was the worst career move I'd ever made and it was the worst year of my career. Once they told me to come off the bench after they told me they would never disrespect me like that, that they would never do that … and then they told me, "They lying down on you, Chuck." ["Bubba Chuck" is Iverson's nickname, "Chuck" for short.] I swear to God. I put this on everybody that I love in my life. …

Jackson: Did you believe it?

Iverson: Did I believe they laid down? Um, I didn't want to believe it. I didn't want to believe that. But I knew something wasn't right. I wouldn't want to think that those guys would disrespect the game like that. But in actuality, when they did that to me, when they lied to me, that put the thought of me coming off the bench in everybody's mind.

You never heard of anybody before that in my whole career ever saying anything about Allen Iverson coming off the bench. You never heard anybody out of the blue say, "Allen Iverson should come off the bench." You never heard anybody mention it or anything, like … this is the first time … . Look, Scoop, you've been following my whole career. You never heard anybody say anything about me coming off the bench or anything like that until the situation happened in Detroit. Now it's in everybody's mind. Now people are thinking, "Oh yeah, he should come off the bench."

And before, no one would have ever been thinking like that. I mean, I'm starting on the All-Star team, but I'm coming off the bench for my regular team? (Laughs.) I mean, I've started on Olympic teams, All-Star teams, all of the teams I've ever been on in my career. So it wasn't that I was being selfish by not coming off the bench. It's just in my whole life it's something that I was never accustomed to doing and never been in that position and situation before. And …

Jackson: … it was something that you were told wasn't going to happen.

Iverson: … it was something I was told was not going to happen. That's the thing. When you are told something like that, when someone tells you that to your face, you put your arms down. You let your guard down. You are like, "OK, I ain't thinking about that anymore; I ain't gonna worry about that." And the explanation that was given to me by them, I mean, I told them: "Yes, I will come off the bench if you think that will make us a better team. But you and I both know that that's not going to make us a better team. But it will if it's the reason you all are giving me. If you all are saying that guys are going to lay down if I don't come off the bench, then yeah that's going to make us a better team because they [are] going to play better. Obviously."

Jackson: But then you have the problem of "What type of dudes am I playing with?" I mean, nothing against them, but …

Iverson: Right, nothing against them, but … if you are a head coach and you feel strongly about this, what would make you think that I want to be around these guys -- especially if you are telling me that they don't want to be around me like that? (Pauses.) Like when I got hurt, I was like, I'll come in and get my treatment every day when they are not around and I'll get outta there. I'd never been on a team where a coach told me the guys gave up on me. You know what I mean? And I kept this under wraps the whole time. I never said anything. Because I didn't want to bad-mouth any of those guys.

And I still don't have a bad word to say about anybody over there or about that organization. I don't have nothing bad to say about the organization, especially Joe [Dumars]. I never had a problem with Joe. He's a stand-up person that I have love for and respect. He was not part of any of the problems I had in Detroit. But for [the coach] to tell me these things and for him to go back on his word like that, it was the hardest and the roughest season I've ever had.

Jackson: Ever?

Iverson: Ever. Because I was told I was brought there to get them over the hump. That they weren't content with being conference champions every year. But I wasn't brought over there to get them over no hump. I used to run down the court six, seven times in a row and not even see [the ball]. You know, I wouldn't even touch the ball. And that was the frustrating part.

And that's why it bothered me when all of the blame [of what happened in Detroit] was thrown on me. All I thought about was the people that know basketball, how they could look at the game and could easily see what was going on. They could see that this wasn't all Allen Iverson's fault. Like I really lost a step that drastic in one year. That dramatic. Really? I went to a team that already had the way they play established. I wasn't brought in there to score a bunch of points. Don't get me wrong, I understood how hard [the trade] was on them. Melo had to go through the same thing in Denver. But when a decision is made, you gotta play basketball. You gotta keep [trying to] win basketball games. And the people that know the game knew that that wasn't the case, but they still said nothing. Man, it was just a bad, bad time for me.

Jackson: And we -- the media -- had a field day with it.

Iverson: Man, people have been waiting for me to fall off my whole career. From the first time I stepped on the court. It probably made people sick to their stomachs watching my whole career, watching the things that I've done in my career. "And the first time that he goes backwards, that's the time we attack his a--." That's the way it is, and I understand fully what it is and how it is being Allen Iverson. I know when people get their chances to take their shots at me they're going to do it. And I don't expect them not to. I've accomplished too many things in the league that the people that criticize me in the league didn't think I could do. Especially at my size. Everybody thought that eventually I would break down. Well, I haven't broken down.

Jackson: Yeah, people have been saying for years that your style of play, not only is it not team-oriented, but it is going to wind up hurting you in the end. It seems like some people have waited 10 years to say that they were right. Waited 10 years to say, "See, I told you …"

Iverson: Longer than that! But that's the only way I know how to play. What, [you're] just going to take [away] something God gave to me? God gave me this ability to play this way. He taught me how to play this way. He showed me the way. Now coach [John] Thompson and Larry Brown, they made me the player that I am. They molded me. But how [are] you going to try to change something that God gave me?

Here's my point: I was doing an interview once and they said, "Allen, you only scored 17.5 last year, and that's great for somebody else, but for you, that's underachieving." And I'm like, "But are you even thinking about the team I'm on?" You got Rasheed. You got Tayshaun [Prince]. You got Rip. You got [Rodney] Stuckey. All these dudes are scorers. Where am I going to get 25 points a night? When I got to Detroit, Rip was like, "You'll be happy around here if you get 12 shots a game," and that's the way it was. That's all I'm trying to say, Scoop. Before you start criticizing, just look at the situation. Just look at it for what it really is.

When I was in Denver, and I was third in the league in scoring, that's because it was just me and Melo carrying the offensive burden. Nene was hurt. [There] wasn't no Nene. There was no Chris Anderson. And in all my years in Philadelphia, you know we didn't have [another] big-time scorer. So when you look at my stats, and you see the numbers are going down, recognize that I'm playing with better personnel. Just like this year, we have Rudy [Gay], and we have O.J. [Mayo]. And we have Zach [Randolph]. So knowing that, how in the [expletive] am I going to get 25 shots a night? But people don't look at it that way, Scoop. They don't look at it that way.

Jackson: So you are ready for more critics now?

Iverson: I'm definitely ready for them. It's always been like that with me. Always. I came into the league as someone they didn't know. [The media] thinks I'm someone else. They don't know the person that I really am. They only see Allen Iverson from the outside. They see me only when I do something that they don't agree with. They don't see me when I do something that they do agree with. And they don't see it because they don't want to see it.

But it's something I've grown to accept. It's something that I understand, and I know that's the way it's going to be. But I'm not going to let that keep killing me. Yeah, it bothered me at first. Sometimes it used to hurt so bad when people used to say stuff about me. It still does. But I'm at a level now that I'm like, "I'm ain't surprised that they said this or that about me."

So it still bothers me, but it doesn't hurt me the way that it used to. But now I don't put anything past what someone says about me or how they think about me; as long as you (pointing to Scoop) love me, I'm going to concentrate on that. I'm not going to concentrate about anybody saying, "Allen Iverson threw a monkey wrench in the Detroit Pistons organization." I'm not concerned about that anymore. Man, I'm 34 years old. When this thing is over I don't have to deal with this s--- (laughs), stuff, anymore.

Jackson: But isn't there a part of you that wants to prove a lot of people wrong -- especially after last year and what's being said?

Iverson: I want to stay away from that. Look, I want to be just as honest as I can about it. People and what they say don't bother me like they used to. When I was younger, I really couldn't take it because I couldn't understand where the criticism was coming from. And there's [still] a part of me that doesn't understand it. But I accept it now. I know that's just the way it's going to be for me. Just like this situation right here [in Memphis], it's a lose-lose situation for me. And to not allow that to happen, I gotta win games. Because if we lose games and I score a lot, they going to say I'm scorin' too much. If we lose games and I don't score a lot, they gonna say I'm not scoring enough. It's a lose-lose, unless we win. So all I can do is huddle up with these guys and try to win basketball games.

Jackson: But still, in my mind, especially since you said this year was "personal," I'm thinking you are out to prove something this year.

(Iverson starts shaking his head.)

Jackson: Am I wrong?

Iverson: When I said it was personal … look, when Allen Iverson makes any comment, the first thing you do if you are the media and when you are anti-Allen Iverson, you take whatever statement he makes and try to make it as negative as you can. You don't look at it as being something different than what you already think about me. Because, really, there's nothing that sells good about Allen Iverson if it's something positive about Allen Iverson. (Laughs.) You know, you don't want to hear about how much money I donate to the Boys and Girls Clubs of America or to AIDS awareness or to give out scholarships. You don't want to hear about that.

So when I said it's personal, I meant it's not personal to me as far as people saying what they've been saying about me, about me losing a step and this and that. … It's personal on a level to where I can have fun again playing basketball. Not worry about, "Oh, he should start or he shouldn't start," and all of that nonsense. I'm talking about going to practice -- yeah, I said practice (laughs) -- and have fun and come out of practice happy, go to games happy, leave the arena, win or lose, happy. Man, again, I'm 34 years old. I don't want to be going to do what I love to do, and it's hurting me. Like, every time I show up to games, I got an attitude all the time. I don't want that. So when I said it's personal, I mean as far as me wanting to have fun again and have that love for the game all over again.

Jackson: But is it personal for you now to show everyone that you have not lost a step, that you are still the AI that we once knew, or to simply prove that you can help a team win ballgames? That's what I'm trying to get at with you. Are you trying to prove that you are the same guy, but at the same time you can make this team win?

Iverson: I'm basically trying to prove that to myself. Myself, my teammates, my coaching staff and our fans first. And the world, they'll get it. It's just not something that I'm concentrating on. I'm just looking at this as a great position I'm in to be with an organization that hasn't won, and if I can come in and prove that, if I'm not a leader, I get the chance here to prove that I am.

Jackson: Is that your mission?

Iverson: With all of these young guys, yeah. To instill in them, just put it in their minds, in their heads, that we're winners. To hell with last year. I'm not coming in here trying to say, "If we go to the playoffs, everybody around [here] is happy, the whole city is happy and everything because we make the playoffs." I'm 14 years in -- this is my 14th year -- I'm not going to be content and happy with just that. And I want them to know that. Yeah, we [can] get into the playoffs -- God forbid somebody knocks us out -- then yeah, it'll be a successful season for them, but not for me. I'm going to let guys know that I'm not here to just go to the playoffs. I believe in these dudes here. All I want them to do is trust me and trust that I'll do everything the right way and lead them to where we need to be.

Scoop Jackson is a columnist for ESPN.com.


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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:40 pm

Posted: Oct. 4, 2009

Hey A.I., shut up and move on

BY DREW SHARP
FREE PRESS COLUMNIST

Allen Iverson should shut up and move on with his life.

But he just can't.

He threw another dagger into Michael Curry's already decomposed coaching carcass, telling ESPN that the former Pistons coach lied to him about never having to come off the bench. Iverson referred to his one year in Detroit as "the worst year of his life."

Can someone give the poor man a Kleenex?

It's nonsense like this that kills the NBA's reputation, furthering the perception that its stars are little more than whiny, self-absorbed millionaires with little regard for the concept of team.

"They told me straight up, 'Allen, we would never disrespect you or your career like that' by making me come off the bench," Iverson told ESPN. "That's what they told me to my face. And after that, I never thought about it again. I just went back to playing. Then, they came to me saying that they felt it would be in the 'best interest of the team' if I came off the bench behind Rip (Hamilton)."

Iverson didn't call out president Joe Dumars, but he definitely threw Curry under the bus, offering another glimpse into what was obviously a toxic combination in that locker room last season.

Iverson still doesn't get it.

He still views himself exclusively as a starter, a guy who must have the ball most of the 30-35 minutes a game he demands. Last year was an educational opportunity for the future Hall of Famer, a chance to show the rest of the league that he could adapt to a new role -- a diminutive Vinnie Johnson, someone capable of firing up quickly off the bench.

He blew it.

That's why he practically begged and pleaded with Memphis for a one-year deal. You can't tell me that a serious championship contender wouldn't have had interest in Iverson's diminished, yet still effective skill set when applied in moderate doses. But teams like Boston, Cleveland and San Antonio had no interest in him, and Iverson has only himself to blame for that.

Lobbing another bomb at Curry solves nothing. If anything, it's petty and childish.

Curry hasn't reacted to Iverson's declaration. Would it make any difference if he did, considering he's already long gone from the Palace?

Maybe Curry did tell Iverson at the beginning that it wasn't his plan to bring him off the bench, but a coach must adjust to situations as they develop. What's promised in November doesn't necessarily hold true in January.

Things change.

It looks like A.I. hasn't.

Contact DREW SHARP: 313-223-4055 or dsharp@freepress.com.
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Tue Oct 27, 2009 8:30 pm



Villanueva, coach Kuester and Gordon

Last Updated: October 27. 2009 7:02PM
From new coach to revamped roster, change has hit Pistons
Ted Kulfan / The Detroit News

Auburn Hills -- Nobody associated with the Pistons liked the way last season ended. Getting swept by the Cavaliers in the first round of the playoffs and watching them celebrate was an ugly end to the rough season.

The turmoil in the regular season compounded the heartache. It included the acquisition of Allen Iverson for Chauncey Billups, and the resulting failure of that trade, and the inexperience of head coach Michael Curry, which resulted in a 39-43 record.

Pistons president Joe Dumars had a tough time watching the end in April.

"Very tough," Dumars said. "Disappointing. That's the one word I would use to describe last year. Very disappointing. Because of all the success we had over the last decade and the fact we've always prided on doing it the right way. And then to watch last year, and the way it unfolded, it was disappointing."

Dumars went quiet momentarily, then offered another word to describe last season.

"Aberration," he said. "We see it as an aberration. That was our one year."

So Dumars went about this summer making sure that wasn't going to happen. Change was needed.

"Because we were the same for so long," said Dumars, who along with the Billups-Iverson trade (Iverson was not re-signed, after a turbulent season), also didn't re-sign Rasheed Wallace and Antonio McDyess last summer.

Dumars also fired coach Michael Curry.

Loose change

Change was afoot.

"We were one of the few teams that had a core for so long. But I've always said this: 'Change is never easy, but it's absolutely necessary,' " Dumars said. "After a decade, change was not only inevitable, but necessary. We had gone as long as we could go."

John Kuester replaced Curry. Dumars then went about reconstructing the roster.

Austin Daye, Jonas Jerebko and DaJuan Summers were drafted. Then Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva were signed as free agents -- two athletic, versatile scorers who could help bring the Pistons back into the offensive style that permeates the NBA these days.

Chris Wilcox, an athletic big man, also was signed. And for his leadership and work ethic, Ben Wallace was brought back.

Change had arrived to the Pistons.

"We had an incredible run in the last decade but as in all professional sports, it's inevitable, and it's never easy, when people have grown attached to seeing the same group," Dumars said. "Change is necessary. Those are difficult decisions you have to make and you cannot avoid it."

It was Dumars and the Pistons' winning ways that attracted Gordon and Villanueva.

"It's kind of a like a family atmosphere," Villanueva said. "A lot of that is because of Joe Dumars. Just the way he carries himself. The organization has been so successful, you want to be part of that success."

Kuester and Dumars both believe the blocks are in place for a successful season if they do certain things.

Defensive charge

Defend, for one. Team defense will be watched closely because the Pistons feel they'll be able to score enough to compete.

But stopping people could be an issue. Kuester likes to say it's a "work in progress," but one gets a sense defense will continually be stressed.

"That (defense) will be a priority," Kuester said.

With the revamped roster, the Pistons have the ability to better compete in the present day NBA.

"We have a lot of live bodies," Kuester said. "A lot of length, athleticism -- guys who can put the ball on the floor and score."

The Pistons have more of that because of their changes.

Said Dumars: "We have to be able to defend, that'll be a key for us, whether we can become a good defensive team. And number two, when you have a lot of guys who can score, it's imperative you become a very unselfish team. So, if we become a good defensive team and an unselfish offensive team, if we do those two things, we'll have some success."

Dumars doesn't know if that'll happen. He thinks it will. Still, Dumars and the rest of the organization sense a fresh excitement that's been missing for a while.

"For so long, we kind of knew how the script was going to play out," Dumars said. "I can't tell you how this script will play out. But that gives you something to look forward to and be excited about."

ted.kulfan@detnews.com (313) 223-4606

Roster

No Pos Player Ht Wt
17 G Chucky Atkins 5-11 160
38 C Kwame Brown 6-11 270
12 G Will Bynum 6-0 185
5 F Austin Daye 6-11 205
7 G Ben Gordon 6-3 200
32 G Richard Hamilton 6-7 193
33 F Jonas Jerebko 6-10 231
54 F Jason Maxiell 6-7 260
22 F Tayshaun Prince 6-9 215
3 G Rodney Stuckey 6-5 205
35 F DaJuan Summers 6-8 240
31 F/C Charlie Villanueva 6-11 232
6 C Ben Wallace 6-9 240
9 F/C Chris Wilcox 6-10 235


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
–Joe Garagiola
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PostSubject: Re: DETROIT PISTONS NEWS   Wed Oct 28, 2009 10:23 pm

Last Updated: October 28. 2009 4:52PM
Rip Hamilton, Allen Iverson agree: Curry caused Pistons' problems
Ted Kulfan / The Detroit News

Memphis -- Memphis Grizzlies guard Allen Iverson says his time in Detroit would have been more pleasant had John Kuester been the coach instead of Michael Curry.

"It would have been a hundred percent different -- a thousand percent better," said Iverson, who won't play Wednesday night in the Grizzlies' opener against the Pistons as he's recovering from a hamstring injury. "I would have known what I was getting into. Kue would have been straightforward with me on how things were going to be."


Iverson knows Kuester from Kuester's days as an assistant under Larry Brown.

Iverson was acquired by the Pistons from Denver for Chauncey Billups last season.

"I was ecstatic about it (the trade) when I first heard about it, but it just didn't work out," Iverson says now. "I was put in a bad situation that I wasn't obviously ready for mentally. I was promised it would be another way, and it was totally different.

"Obviously, it didn't work out because the coach (Curry) even isn't there after one season."

Curry was fired after one season and replaced by Kuester. Iverson said Curry promised him he wouldn't come off the bench, and broke that promise late in the season.

Iverson added he had no problems with Pistons president Joe Dumars or guard Richard Hamilton, who replaced Iverson in the starting lineup.

"I don't have any problems with Joe," Iverson said. "My problem was that it didn't turn out the way Michael Curry told me it was going to be."

Hamilton agreed that there was no rift between him and Iverson.

"The media tried to make something out of something that wasn't (the case)," said Hamilton, who will play Wednesday after being excused from practice Tuesday to deal with a personal matter. "We were great friends and we talked off the court all the time, and we talk (now)."


Hamilton also blamed Curry for the chaos of late season.

"It could have worked out," said Hamilton. "I just thought the coach we had at the time (didn't) put us in situations where we all could be at our best. When you don't have that, it makes it difficult. All the guys are trying to figure it out on the floor, on the fly, rather than putting us in situations where we could be better."

Villanueva starting

Kuester said the starting lineup against Memphis will be Hamilton, Rodney Stuckey, Tayshaun Prince, Charlie Villanueva and Ben Wallace.

The one change from the exhibition season is Villanueva starting in place of Kwame Brown.

ted.kulfan@detnews.com


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
–Joe Garagiola
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