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Josh Smith benched for missing practice

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Josh Smith did not start the game or the second half in Friday's loss to Atlanta, but it wasn't because of his poor performance on the court.

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Josh Smith did not start in Friday's disappointing home loss to the Atlanta Hawks. Some fans, including myself, were hopeful that this may have been the result of his recent poor play.

Keith Langlois suggested otherwise on Twitter after Friday's game.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Josh Smith didn&#39;t start because he missed Thursday practice. Teams don&#39;t usually practice after back to back.</p>&mdash; Keith Langlois (@Keith_Langlois) <a href="https://twitter.com/Keith_Langlois/statuses/404083616746987520">November 23, 2013</a></blockquote>

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Cheeks called practice after Wednesday loss.</p>&mdash; Keith Langlois (@Keith_Langlois) <a href="https://twitter.com/Keith_Langlois/statuses/404083778504499200">November 23, 2013</a></blockquote>

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Practice wasn&#39;t set until flight home. Smith, anticipating day off after b2b, wasn&#39;t on flight and missed 11 am practice</p>&mdash; Keith Langlois (@Keith_Langlois) <a href="https://twitter.com/Keith_Langlois/statuses/404085234053808128">November 23, 2013</a></blockquote>

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Obviously, this could be an honest mistake. Josh Smith has friends and family in Atlanta, and he may have just assumed instead of asking. We've all been there.

But, the Pistons are losing, Josh Smith is playing poorly, he developed a reputation as a malcontent in Atlanta, and other Pistons players are showing signs of frustration with coaching. For example, Jonas Jerebko:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"><p>Jerebko obviously mad about being pulled. Slammed a towel. Here we go. <a href="https://twitter.com/search?q=%23Pistons&amp;src=hash">#Pistons</a></p>&mdash; Vincent Ellis (@Vincent_Ellis56) <a href="https://twitter.com/Vincent_Ellis56/statuses/404072179681067008">November 23, 2013</a></blockquote>

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Maurice Cheeks has not impressed me as a coach thus far; however, I have absolutely no desire to see another locker room mutiny. Let's hope Cheeks can nip all of this in the bud, and we don't have anything else to write or discuss about it.

UPDATE:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"><p>Joe Dumars was just asked about Josh Smith being benched for missing practice and his response was, &quot;It&#39;s deeper than that.&quot;</p>&mdash; Dave Pemberton (@drpemberton) <a href="https://twitter.com/drpemberton/statuses/404089510994006016">November 23, 2013</a></blockquote>

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Maybe it is about his poor play after all.