By Jeff Moss
December 9, 2011
[Editor’s Note: This article was written previous to David Stern and the NBA deciding to kill the Chris Paul trade to the Lakers before the ink was even dry on the new CBA and after Stern let the Hornets management negotiate with Los Angeles and consumate the deal.]
On the day that it became more apparent than ever that the NBA is exclusively about four or five cities and the ONLY chance of a team located in a Detroit suburb winning another Larry O’Brien Trophy is through the lottery, Pistons President Joe Dumars did the unthinkable.
Look, as a fan of the Pistons, I was quite open in hoping for the cancellation of this NBA season. I wanted the owners to break the player’s back and enforce a hard salary cap that would insure competitive balance.
I wanted the same system that we are stuck with in the NHL where a team can’t possibly afford to sign three marquee free-agents in one offseason without going over the cap.
I craved new rules ensuring that my support of the Pistons wasn’t in vain. I wanted a guarantee that the Heat, Lakers and Knicks couldn’t create cabals based on the league’s elite player’s desire to play in warm weather cities with ample young pussy or in NYC.
I just wanted a little hope that one day the Pistons might stink badly enough to get THEIR Kevin Durant and maybe, just maybe that guy would have enough intestinal fortitude to stick out winters in Northern Oakland County in front of extremely loyal fans.
But on Thursday we learned that nothing has changed at all with this new CBA. The dog and pony show that we witnessed over the last six months wasn’t about the myth of competitive balance. It had nothing to do with guaranteeing the fans in every city that their team had a chance at a championship.
Nope. The minute the owners got the Basketball Related Income (BRI) split management pined for, they didn’t give two fucks about the systemic issues which led to LeBron, D-Wade & Bosh partying in South Beach or Carmelo forcing his way out of a good situation in Denver to the Big Apple or the eventuality of CP3, Kobe and Dwight Howard all wearing Lakers uniforms.
And on the SAME DAMN DAY that the new CBA was revealed for the fraud that it is, Fat Joe D. stupidly decided to bring the band back together and once again refused to play the only hand that he has.
A $30 million dollar contract over four years for Tayshaun Prince? The return of Ben Wallace? Hey, Chauncey Billups is about to get amnestied by the Knicks and I am sure Rasheed Wallace misses spitting out four-letter epithets at Bennett Salvatore, so why not go the Fully Monty and complete this KISS-like reunion tour?
Does Joe actually believe that his best chance of selling tickets is nostalgia because this can’t be about building a championship squad for the long haul.
The few Pistons fans remaining don’t want much. Hell, I don’t want them to even WIN this season. Just throw Brandon Knight, Jonas Jerebko, Greg Monroe out there every night and let me watch their development.
But more of the Prince shrugged shoulder and whining routine for four more seasons which is sure to take PT away from Jerebko? Are you fucking kidding me?
I have been told by Palace Insiders that Dumars is disgusted with the thought of “tanking” a season and would never stoop to such a plan. Hell, two seasons ago he wouldn’t even order his head coach to garbage it up for ONE WEEK which ended up costing the team DeMarcus Cousins.
(And yes, I know, they still ended up with Monroe. But Dumars didn’t know that costing himself four slots in the lottery would work out that well and if you would rather have Monroe than DeMarcus, you are probably about as high as Cousins.)
When you are dealing with steroidal Gus Macker teams like we are going to have in the NBA in the foreseeable future you can’t attempt to rebuild and contend at the same damn time.
What is Joe’s hope in bringing Prince back? Slide into the eight spot in the Eastern Conference and get annihilated by the Heat? Yeah, that would be a great road map to success because who would want a lottery pick in what probably will be the deepest draft in recent memory?
What a wonderful plan that is, Bizzaro Hannibal Smith.
Reading CNNSI.com writer Chris Mannix’s Tweet that “Tayshaun Prince’s four-year, $30 mill deal with Detroit is my early favorite for worst contract of ’11 offseason” was bad enough, but then to get slapped in the face with the Chris Paul trade to L.A. just hours later just took the wind out of me.
How can anyone that doesn’t have dementia and who still thinks it is 2004 get excited about the upcoming NBA season if you are a fan of the Pistons?
In a league where every superstar wants to play in a Top 3 Market with an Oceanside view, the only way for Dumars to return this team to past glory is sucking it up and losing until they hit the jackpot. Unfortunately, he is the only one who doesn’t get this.
He is under some delusion that the Pistons can bring a knife (Stuckey, Prince, Gordon) to a nuclear warhead (Miami, Lakers, NYK, etc.) fight and come out on top.
I mean, we had to get stuck with the one owner (Tom Gores) in NBA history who didn’t want to bring in his own guy to run the organization and clean house.
So this is what the NBA has come down to for me. Rooting for a team in Oklahoma City (that should really be playing in Seattle) because they have perfectly utilized the game plan for small market teams that Dumars refuses to follow.
The whole thing is depressing as hell and I really have lost all the passion I have for the NBA. This league is dead to me and I hope David Stern enjoys poor attendance in 25 cities where the fans just don’t give a fuck anymore because their situation is absolutely hopeless.
I swear, if the Tigers get outbid for Yoennis Cespedes next week, I am going to enroll at Virginia Tech University.