Chris McCosky rips into the fans at the Palace (as well as, presumably, those season ticket holders who buy tickets but don't show):
The atmosphere has grown stale. The whole Deetroit Basketball thing seems like an old bit now. The crowds are arriving later than ever. The Pistons took the floor to a nearly empty building on Tuesday. And when they came out to start the second half, same thing -- most fans were still out on the concourse or down in their little bunker suites. It's just dead. Not much for the Pistons to draw energy from.
Now, I understand that the first couple of months in a long NBA season are meaningless. You don't expect these games to generate a whole lot of buzz -- especially on a cold Tuesday night with the Blazers in town. We got a little spoiled by the Pistons' hot start last year, which created more buzz early on than normal. But crowds have seemed more lifeless than I can remember since the Pistons banned the teal.
I don't get many chances to actually make it out to the Palace, but you can tell from watching on television that McCosky is hitting the nail on the head. It's taking longer and longer for the seats to fill up ... when they even do.
If you're one of those season ticket holders who occasionally doesn't show, well, there's an easy way to avoid future embarrassment: send tickets you can't use to me. (I'm joking ... but I'm also serious.)
Since we're talking about the game experience, I do have one suggestion for the guys who do the sound -- lose that loud electric guitar riff that's played when the Pistons are on defense. (You know what I'm talking about -- the loud, screeching sound followed by clap-clap clap-clap-clap.) It's the single-most annoying thing about watching home games -- excepting, of course, when the Pistons lose to sub-.500 teams -- and it's made worse early in games when you actually hear it echo in a half-full arena.
UPDATE: What does true home court advantage look/sound like?