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Blakely and Jahnke: Who said Flip’s job is secure?

A. Sherrod Blakely argues today that Saunders' job is hardly secure:

The future of Detroit Pistons coach Flip Saunders is still up in the air.

However, multiple league sources said Monday he still is likely to be fired, and a decision should be made within days.

Joe Dumars, Detroit's president of basketball operations, and team owner Bill Davidson are expected to meet within the next day or so to discuss, among other things, whether the team will retain Saunders, who has one year left on a four-year, $20 million deal he signed in 2005.

Blakely cites a couple of instances in which players publicly questioned Saunders' decisions during games, as well as their apparent penchant for giving credit to Michael Curry:

It does not help Saunders that the Pistons already have two potential replacements on staff in assistant coaches Michael Curry and Terry Porter.

In the playoffs, it was not uncommon for Pistons players, when interviewed after a win, to mention something 'Coach Curry' said to them that helped the team play better.

Honestly, the only specific instance I recall that happening was during Lindsey Hunter's interview with Stephen A. Smith, but Blakely could have easily been referring to things overheard in the locker room that didn't make their way into an actual story.

My biggest knock on Curry is his lack of experience, but I also don't know Curry like Dumars does. They were teammates back in the day, and even though Curry was largely a scrub by any definition of the word, he was also a natural-born leader, serving as team captain for several years for the Pistons and Bucks as well as president of the NBA Players Association followed by a stint as the NBA's Vice President of Player Development. Writing him off simply because he hasn't paid his dues on the sideline may be short-sighted.

In the end, only time will tell what happens. I see plenty of reasons to keep Flip (namely, he's a good coach), but my gut has always been that he's gone. If my gut ends up being wrong, so be it; you won't see me trying to convince anyone they simply didn't read it right.

Update: Krista Jahnke of the Free Press weighs in with the most definitive take on the situation:

A person with knowledge of the situation said president Joe Dumars has not sat down with Saunders yet to discuss the past season, which ended last week to the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference finals.

Nor has Dumars met with owner Bill Davidson, who will undoubtedly have his say in Saunders' future.

The person said a meeting between Dumars and Davidson will take place "really soon," and after that, questions about Saunders' future should be cleared up. The person stressed that Saunders has not yet been given any assurance he'll be back.

(Jahnke's article wasn't published online when this post first went up, but thanks to V for pointing it out in the comments when it did.)

Interestingly enough, Jahnke repeats the (false? unverified?) "Curry wasn't allowed to interview with Chicago last month" speculation as fact without acknowledging Curry's quotes from Saturday (in a Free Press article, no less, though not one written by Jahnke), which suggested he's on the verge of officially interviewing with the Bulls now that the season is finally over.