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Insider look at the Palace pressure

[After last night's game, I emailed Dave Wieme, Palace Sports & Entertainment Director of Strategic Communications, to find out what the mood was like in the offices at the Palace -- whether everyone was on edge or taking the series in stride.

Dave replied back with an email that he sent out to the entire staff before Game 5. It's a nice reminder that while only 12 men suit up for the Pistons each night, there are hundreds more working behind the scenes, all rooting for their "co-workers." The following is the full text of Dave's email.]


Inspiration? You want words of inspiration?

Yeah, well how about this for inspiration?


Let that one sink in for a little bit.

Done. Season...over. Playoffs...complete.
See you next year.

Hurts, doesn't it?
Stings, a lot, right?
Mostly, and believe me I am feeling it too, it sucks.

No being one of two teams still playing in June. No Finals.
No long days and late nights.
No bragging. No chest-thumping. No pride.
No crowds. No games. No summer tailgates.
No jersey on the Spirit of Detroit. No parade.
No being a part of something very, very special.

Remember how great last year was? Yeah, I know we lost, but remember how great it was being part of it?
Now go back two years ago when we won. Those are some great memories.

And now, tonight, we are on the verge of losing our chance to have it again.
I don't know about the rest of you, but to quote Mr. D, "That's bulls***."

I don't want it...and I know there are 1,800+ people in this organization that don't want it, either.

So, the question now stands: What are you prepared to do?

That's right, you. Not the organization, not the team, not the coaches, not the executives.
You. You, the person. You, the individual. You, the member of this family.

What are you prepared to do?

I started with this organization when I was 15 years old.
I have seen a lot of things. I saw us win two world championships.
I left for a little while but I came back. And I saw us win another world championship.

You know what it ALWAYS is around here? It's US against the world. It's our family against everyone else.
That's our attitude and when you become a part of this organization, that better be your attitude...or you can go work for Atlanta or Cleveland or Indiana. If you're not with us, you're against us.

Tonight you WILL BE with us.

So, I don't want to hear anymore about how Ben "can't shoot free throws." And I don't want to hear anymore about "Rasheed's attitude." And don't ask me again, "where's Chauncey?" None of that matters anymore.

Let's stick together tonight. Let's cheer like crazy. Let's let the positive attitude just ooze out of us.
Remember, we have a great team. We have a great team that is going to take one game at a time...not look back, not look forward.
The only thing that matters is tonight. Nothing is more important than this day.

I'm prepared to cheer and yell tonight. I'm prepared to protest every call against us and applaud every call for us. I'm prepared to scream until I'm hoarse and clap until my hands are red and raw. I'm prepared to have a banging headache and to be deaf for at least an hour after game time. That's what I'm prepared for.

The question is: What are you prepared to do?

One at a time, folks. One at a time.
See you tonight at the game.



[Thanks again to Dave for sharing. If you'd like more of his behind-the-scenes look at the playoffs, check out his latest blog entry in which he describes an uneasy elevator trip with the Eastern Conference trophy last night.]

Previously on DBB:
Detroit Bad Boys talks with David Wieme