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dreg2003

"In Detroit, it was horrible for me. A nightmare." - Darko Millicic

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I think making this statement based on the box-score of 3 games is a mistake...

I made this statement before he was even traded. Before there were even rumors of him being traded...

But I started a thread on what we would get for him if he was traded... because I recognized the possibility.

Never foresaw Cato and a 1st... but I understand what Joe is doing... Hope Orlando gets the #6 pick next year... so we get it. I'll reserve final judgement on the trade based on what we can get with the incoming #1.

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There's nothing questionable about him being better than Dale Davis or Jason Maxiell. He is.

Are you sure about this? I've been in Darko's corner as much as most, but he certainly didn't look better than Maxiel in last years summer league. As for Davis, I don't think he can bring what Davis can at this stage either, but then again I'm a little higher that most on what Davis still has to offer. He may have had one of his better seasons last year with Indy.

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Darko is more athletic than either of them, blocks shots much better, and I don't see either of them having an advantage on offense or rebounding. Darko has great touch and is pulling down a half dozen boards per game in limited minutes, maybe they could do as well rebounding but I can't imagine them doing much better. A tad, maybe

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There's nothing questionable about him being better than Dale Davis or Jason Maxiell. He is.

Not buying it. Obviously, the coaches and Joe didn't either.

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PS:

Just to clarify: I both like and hate this trade.

I like it in the sense that if Joe D is under a mandate to not go into luxury tax territory, than JD is making moves he feels he needs to, to resign Ben, extend Billups before his contract ends (extend him this summer?), etc.... keeping a potential Championship-Contender-Every-Year together for the next 3-6 years. It's worth it just for that. I'm not certain, salary cap and Darko's growth-wise that Darko needed to be traded because of that, but if Joe D felt that was necessary, than so be it. The 2nd part of liking the trade is that he gets a potential-lottery pick back from the Magic. So hopefully, he can recoup the loss of Darko's potential with this pick. It's just too bad that we can't be guaranteed to pick a 17-year old Darko with the Magic's pick.... For us, that would appear to be the perfect time to draft a Darko-like prospect. But if Joe D felt he needed to make this trade, then that's OK by me. I'll like it for the 2 reasons I mentioned above.

I hate trading away a player of Darko's potential. Period.

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For the record, I didn't like the trade because it didn't make us a better team this year and we lost offense from the backup pg position. However it appears more and more every day that Darko pushed Joe's hand with this one.

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I guess I should have said: "He's not currently better than Sheed, Ben, McDyess, or Dale Davis. And it's questionable whether or not he's better than Maxiell. Therefore he wasn't going to get minutes anytime soon."

Also, most star players in this league average close to 40 minutes a game. Sheed (35.7) and Ben (36.3) are averaging less than just about every other All-Star in the league. They're right where they should be. McDyess is only averaging 19.7 - perfect for your 6th man.

Tay shouldn't even enter into this conversation. Darko cannot play the 3. No way, no how. Tay is backed up by Mo and Carlos, so if he's playing to many minutes (which he's not at 36.2), then that's on Flip to utilize those guys better. Either way, it wasn't going to get Darko any playing time, that's for sure.

Actually I disagree 100% on Davis being better than Darko, and even if it were close(which I don't really think it is as I think Darko offers far more on the court than Davis does) the idea of playing him to help him improve as the future of the team should put him faaaaaaaaaaaar ahead of Davis in the rotation. I think he's showing that he could have given us a solid, productive 15 mins a game if he keeps up at this pace(which I don't know why you would think would decline when it's not even spectacular).

As for saying Tay doesn't enter in, I disagree there as well. his mins could be brought down to 33 a game, and there are plenty of times when a coach could use a big line-up with Darko and any combination of Dyess, Sheed and Ben. Ben's flexibility as a defender as well as Darko's on offense could have allowed this rotation to give Detroit a pretty interesting advantage with Ben moving to the 3 slot on defense and Darko on offense. This team has a lot of flexibility with Prince being able to play the 2 or 3, Ben the 3,4, or 5. Sheed the 3, 4 or 5. 15 mins a game could easily have been found for Darko IF Flip felt it was worth it. He didn't and that's that. We'll find out if he was right or wrong over the next year or two I think. Would Darko's having gotten 15 mins a game have resulted in more losses? Would it have resulted in few losses(clearly we were run down a bit during that stretch of losing 3 of 5)? If and but's are a stupid game to play. But by no means was there just no where to find time for Darko. We chose not to find time for him.

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...it appears more and more every day that Darko pushed Joe's hand with this one.

I'm not certain what Joe was thinking in this regard. Because if I'm Joe, and I REALLY like the potential and future of Darko, less his attitude... than I'm not trading him... if Darko is pushing my hand, I push back. ("Get off your ask and PROVE it Darko!!! Quit whining like a baby!!!" :grin:)

And I don't think Joe is an easy pushover either... so I'm just guessing, but I think he could care less about Darko's pouting and cared more about keeping the core of this team together for the next 5 years, keeping salary cap in line, getting as many Championships as this team can, not much playing time for Darko - too bad, and.... a re-set on Darko by getting a potential lottery draft pick to replace him.

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For the record, I didn't like the trade because it didn't make us a better team this year...

I completely disagree. I feel that the bench is performing better and more consistently now that Lindsay is in the lineup instead of Arroyo. You can see this in the numbers as well. Arroyo was already starting to lose minutes to Hunter, and it wouldn't have been long before his minutes disappeared. Hunter is the better option because he's a smart veteran player that's extremely tough defensively and will be a major asset to us in the playoffs. We may have lost a little depth (though with Delk here now, that point is moot), but we actually improved by not having a controversy in the backcourt when Lindsay took Arroyo's minutes. To sum it up, we got way better defensively in the second unit, and whatever we've lost on offense (not much) from Arroyo we make up for with Lindsay because good defense turns into easy offensive buckets and extra possesions.

As for Darko, the trade was a good move. We weren't going to find playing time for him and he was going to bolt. Basically, we were going to get nothing out of the pick. Now, we have another first round pick to gamble on. As I said before, Joe turned what would have been a complete loss for the Pistons into a "do-over". Not only that, he also got an 8 Mil expiring contract to help keep this team in solid financial position for the future.

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Why couldn't he have gotten minutes? If he got 15 mins a game maybe Sheed, Prince and Ben would only be averaging 33 mins a game rather than 36-38. Just a thought.

Do you think, after his dealings with Larry Brown, that Darko would resign with Detroit? Even with his lack of playing time with Flip, I don't think giving Darko 10-15 "quality" minutes a game was going to keep him here. He would be behind the starters for at least another year and would be looking for brighter pastures similar to Okur when deciding on a new contract IMO. Joe D probably realized that apart from playing him 15-20 minutes a game and promising him a starting position in the next 2 years, we were not going to keep him. That means we need to gut him and get what we can right now.

I don't have one problem with the way that Flip has run this team. He isn't "over taxing" our players IMO. They are playing similar or less than most All-Stars in the NBA. We have a starting five of all stars. They have over achieved compared to all preseason predictions. If they win an NBA championship, than Flip did exactly the right thing IMO. So far, having the best record in the NBA, he is doing the right thing. Saying they need more rest is just an opinion of yours....I think Flip and Joe have a better idea of the amount of time the starters should play.

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I completely disagree. I feel that the bench is performing better and more consistently now that Lindsay is in the lineup instead of Arroyo. You can see this in the numbers as well. Arroyo was already starting to lose minutes to Hunter, and it wouldn't have been long before his minutes disappeared. Hunter is the better option because he's a smart veteran player that's extremely tough defensively and will be a major asset to us in the playoffs. We may have lost a little depth (though with Delk here now, that point is moot), but we actually improved by not having a controversy in the backcourt when Lindsay took Arroyo's minutes. To sum it up, we got way better defensively in the second unit, and whatever we've lost on offense (not much) from Arroyo we make up for with Lindsay because good defense turns into easy offensive buckets and extra possesions.

As for Darko, the trade was a good move. We weren't going to find playing time for him and he was going to bolt. Basically, we were going to get nothing out of the pick. Now, we have another first round pick to gamble on. As I said before, Joe turned what would have been a complete loss for the Pistons into a "do-over". Not only that, he also got an 8 Mil expiring contract to help keep this team in solid financial position for the future.

Concur. Couldn't have said it better.

To all: Great posts, great points. It's really been a pleasure reading the well thought-out arguments on both sides. Cheers to the Piston's forum.

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Actually I disagree 100% on Davis being better than Darko, and even if it were close(which I don't really think it is as I think Darko offers far more on the court than Davis does) the idea of playing him to help him improve as the future of the team should put him faaaaaaaaaaaar ahead of Davis in the rotation. I think he's showing that he could have given us a solid, productive 15 mins a game if he keeps up at this pace(which I don't know why you would think would decline when it's not even spectacular)..

Well, we're going to have to agree to disagree on Dale vs Darko. In my eyes, there's no way Darko gives you what you're looking for from your 4th big man on a championship caliber team. Dale Davis does. You're looking for toughness, rebounding, defense, veteran smarts, and experience. You're not looking for a project. Darko may be better some day, but for now, and for this team, Dale Davis is the far superior option.

As for saying Tay doesn't enter in, I disagree there as well. his mins could be brought down to 33 a game, and there are plenty of times when a coach could use a big line-up with Darko and any combination of Dyess, Sheed and Ben...

We've been talking about this since the day we got Sheed on this message board...the fact is it just wasn't going to happen. If the "big" lineup ever did happen, it was only for a minute or two, once or twice a season. As cool as we think it would be, it just wasn't realistic to expect to start seeing this on the court regularly enough to make a difference in Tay's minutes.

Also, there's no reason that the youngest guy in our starting lineup needs to play the fewest minutes.

But by no means was there just no where to find time for Darko. We chose not to find time for him.

There was no need. You have starters who are playing the appropriate minutes. You have guys coming of the bench in Arroyo (Lindsay now), Delfino, Mo, and McDyess. That's a 9 man rotation. Not many teams go deeper than that, and a team with 4 All-Stars (who need to get close to All-Star minutes) certainly shouldn't.

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For the record, I didn't like the trade because it didn't make us a better team this year and we lost offense from the backup pg position. However it appears more and more every day that Darko pushed Joe's hand with this one.

I don't think it makes us worse, which is what is important. I know many disagree and feel that Arroyo was an important insurance policy for this team, but I never felt Arroyo fit in well here in Detroit. I think he is a good pg, but I have more confidence in Hunter. We might not be better (we basically traded away 2 players for a potentially high draft pick), but I don't think we are worse. At least not enough to make any difference in the wins and loss columns.

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I guess I should have said: "He's not currently better than Sheed, Ben, McDyess, or Dale Davis. And it's questionable whether or not he's better than Maxiell. Therefore he wasn't going to get minutes anytime soon."

Also, most star players in this league average close to 40 minutes a game. Sheed (35.7) and Ben (36.3) are averaging less than just about every other All-Star in the league. They're right where they should be. McDyess is only averaging 19.7 - perfect for your 6th man.

Tay shouldn't even enter into this conversation. Darko cannot play the 3. No way, no how. Tay is backed up by Mo and Carlos, so if he's playing to many minutes (which he's not at 36.2), then that's on Flip to utilize those guys better. Either way, it wasn't going to get Darko any playing time, that's for sure.

What do you base the judgement on that he is not currently better then Sheed, Ben, McDyess or Davis or Maxiell? The guy never got to play period, we can't say he would have been good or bad. Watching the limited sample of games he's had with Orlando, he's a good player now at 20. I wouldn't doubt he ends up averaging 10 points, 6 rebounds and 3 blocks the rest of the way as soon as Orlando inserts him in the starting lineup. Darko is a defensive force *right now*.

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What do you base the judgement on that he is not currently better then Sheed, Ben, McDyess or Davis or Maxiell?

If he was better than them, why didn't he play instead of them? Personal vendetta? Pistons wanted to lose on purpose?

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Well, we're going to have to agree to disagree on Dale vs Darko. In my eyes, there's no way Darko gives you what you're looking for from your 4th big man on a championship caliber team. Dale Davis does. You're looking for toughness, rebounding, defense, veteran smarts, and experience. You're not looking for a project. Darko may be better some day, but for now, and for this team, Dale Davis is the far superior option.

We've been talking about this since the day we got Sheed on this message board...the fact is it just wasn't going to happen. If the "big" lineup ever did happen, it was only for a minute or two, once or twice a season. As cool as we think it would be, it just wasn't realistic to expect to start seeing this on the court regularly enough to make a difference in Tay's minutes.

Also, there's no reason that the youngest guy in our starting lineup needs to play the fewest minutes.

There was no need. You have starters who are playing the appropriate minutes. You have guys coming of the bench in Arroyo (Lindsay now), Delfino, Mo, and McDyess. That's a 9 man rotation. Not many teams go deeper than that, and a team with 4 All-Stars (who need to get close to All-Star minutes) certainly shouldn't.

My feeling on having 5 guys playing all-star minutes is that, it's easy to have one player that's the most integral to your success and rest him, or remove him during blow outs, which is what most teams do. With Detroit though, to rest 5 guys on separate nights leaves us as a lesser team on far more nights and therefore isn't really done. On top of that, our staff seems very reticent to rest all our starters during blow-outs, for whatever reason. I'm not as concerned about the minutes, but it wouldn't suck to have them playing 3-5 mins less a game, all of them.

As for the 4th big man...why does he need the characteristics you mention when we have 3 guys ahead of him with all of that. Seems silly to say you need a veteran presence at a postion where you already have 3 guys with that. I'd rather have a young player who can rebound, play defense,block shots and stretch the opposing teams defense while providing some offensive punch, which Darko has the ability to do. I don't think it's real fair to say he wasn't able. I honestly believe the Pistons were fed up with his attitude. That's fine, but I think it's pretty hard-headed to feel that way when this is a 20 year old kid, but I don't want to get into that argument again. My point is that Darko seems to have potential even now. He seems to at the worst be a guy who could play 15mins give us 6-10pts, 2-4 blocks, 4-7 rebounds a game, all the while possibly start blossoming as a player. Our staff must've disagreed, hence his being traded, but I don't think they ever really tried to find out. He got stuck on the bench due to attitude, and we decided he was a project we no longer wanted to take on. We'll see whether we were right or wrong pretty soon I imagine.

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If he was better than them, why didn't he play instead of them? Personal vendetta? Pistons wanted to lose on purpose?

they were unhappy with his attitude...Flip alluded to that earlier in the year. His play was not bad as far as I could tell.

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I honestly believe the Pistons were fed up with his attitude. That's fine, but I think it's pretty hard-headed to feel that way when this is a 20 year old kid,

The problem is this: if he has an attitude problem, what do you do about it? You can't give someone playing time in response to whining... that rewards being a beeotch, and sends a terrible message to people who aren't whining and not getting playing time.

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they were unhappy with his attitude...Flip alluded to that earlier in the year. His play was not bad as far as I could tell.

See above.

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Do you think, after his dealings with Larry Brown, that Darko would resign with Detroit? Even with his lack of playing time with Flip, I don't think giving Darko 10-15 "quality" minutes a game was going to keep him here. He would be behind the starters for at least another year and would be looking for brighter pastures similar to Okur when deciding on a new contract IMO. Joe D probably realized that apart from playing him 15-20 minutes a game and promising him a starting position in the next 2 years, we were not going to keep him. That means we need to gut him and get what we can right now.
Actually, he didn't have a choice next year, and in 2 years with Sheed and Dyess being 33 or 34 he would have most likely have been moved into the starting line-up or 3rd big man(assuming the best, of course). So yeah, I do think he would have resigned quite likely to play on a championship caliber team.

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I haven't actually seen one of Darko's games yet. I have to admit I'm curious to see him get that extended playing time. Looking at stat lines just isn't as exciting.

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I completely disagree. I feel that the bench is performing better and more consistently now that Lindsay is in the lineup instead of Arroyo. You can see this in the numbers as well. Arroyo was already starting to lose minutes to Hunter, and it wouldn't have been long before his minutes disappeared. Hunter is the better option because he's a smart veteran player that's extremely tough defensively and will be a major asset to us in the playoffs. We may have lost a little depth (though with Delk here now, that point is moot), but we actually improved by not having a controversy in the backcourt when Lindsay took Arroyo's minutes. To sum it up, we got way better defensively in the second unit, and whatever we've lost on offense (not much) from Arroyo we make up for with Lindsay because good defense turns into easy offensive buckets and extra possesions.

We'll have to disagree on this one. I don't see a more consistent bench, especially on the offensive end. The games have felt tighter than they were before the trade and we've been forced to take more desperation shots with a short shot clock with Lindsey at the point.

I've also seen teams go on a run or two with the bench in the game forcing Flip to go back to the starters earlier than he wanted to. The most recent example was the other night in Cleveland when we played our fourth game in five nights and needed our bench. With Arroyo on the team we still had the option of Lindsey's defense. I'm not saying the bench has necessarily been bad, but so far it hasn't caught up to us and I hope it doesn't. In summary, I certainly don't think we're a better team without having more offense from our backup point guard.

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I'd have to agree with Betrayer. I like the bench more now than I did a month ago. I definitely have more confidence knowing what Hunter brings to the table positive than Arroyo did.

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The problem is this: if he has an attitude problem, what do you do about it? You can't give someone playing time in response to whining... that rewards being a beeotch, and sends a terrible message to people who aren't whining and not getting playing time.

I don't want to turn this into another "why darko's got a bad attitude" thread so I just won't reply...but there are extenuating circumstances.

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Actually, he didn't have a choice next year, and in 2 years with Sheed and Dyess being 33 or 34 he would have most likely have been moved into the starting line-up or 3rd big man(assuming the best, of course). So yeah, I do think he would have resigned quite likely to play on a championship caliber team.

You may be right, but I don't know if it is worth the risk. If Darko was still coming off the bench throughout this year and next, I really don't think he would re-sign with the Pistons. He claims it was a nightmare and probably would not like viewing the game another season and a half from the bench for large parts of the game. Even at 20 minutes a game (the most I could see him getting the next season and a half), I think he would want to go somewhere where he would see significant time. Of course we will never know. I would have LOVED to have kept the kid another season, but if we were going to lose him, I don't want to give him away like we did with Okur. We basically trained Okur and got nothing in return. At least with Darko we may get a decent player in return.

I still hope Darko has a good career. Maybe, one day, he will come back to where it all started. If Darko left on good terms with Joe, we could see him again!! This trade might have been a deal with Darko to get him playing time and hoping he would seriously consider us when his contract goes up. I doubt it, but it is wishful thinking and Joe seems to shock me each year with what he pulls off.

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