Carlos Delfino struggled with his shot on Monday, shooting just 3-11 from the field and 0-5 from three-point land. The good news, though, is that 1) he didn't lose his confidence and kept heaving up shots, and 2) Flip Saunders stuck with him.
Fortunately -- and, if this plays out, this is some of the best news I've heard all preseason -- that's something the Pistons plan on doing all year long. From the Free Press:
The Pistons are committed to giving Delfino something like 15 minutes of playing time a game this season, regardless of how his shot is falling on a given night. They want him to play through mistakes, find his rhythm, grow comfortable in his role and be a regular contributor. They believe he will, too.
That's why coach Flip Saunders found reason to be pleased with Delfino on Tuesday.
"Even though he struggled shooting the ball at times," Saunders said, "he made some plays at the end."
Obviously what a coach says now doesn't always hold water come January (let alone April), but I've been saying for about as long as I've had this blog that all Delfino needs is a real chance to play. In many regards, he's kind of in the same boat as Darko Milicic was last year, except (sniping in the foreign press aside) Delfino keeps his head up and is ready to give full effort whenever his number is called. Detroit's depth is often criticized, but if Delfino (and Jason Maxiell, for that matter) are given legitimate chances to play this year, I see no reason why it can't actually be a strength heading into the postseason.
Pistons let Delfino play through mistakes [Detroit Free Press]