Detroit will try to run their win streak to five as the hot Charlotte Hornets fly into town, winners of 11 of their last 13. Now links time as you wish!
Will streaking Marcus Morris get more chances for red-hot Pistons? -- Detroit Free Press
Over the past seven games, the Pistons forward is averaging nearly 16 points a game.
It goes beyond scoring.
He is shooting 57.7%, including 72% from beyond the three-point line. But Morris is getting only 10 shots per game during his shooting binge.
"I get that from time to time, but I'm looking more at the game in terms of a team and what kind of quality shots we're getting," Van Gundy said.
Know more about the Charlotte Hornets -- Charlotte Observer
Courtney Lee and Jeremy Lin are vital pieces of the Hornets attack, sometimes for different reasons (one of which is hair). Though seriously, Lin did his best Gordon Gekko hair on the court the other night.
How is Courtney Lee working out?
A week or so ago Hornets coach Steve Clifford said Lee will be that much more impactful than he's been so far. Clifford's description was right on.
Since then he has guarded Miami's Dwyane Wade and San Antonio's Tony Parker to great positive effect. Also, he seems to be picking up where his open shots are in the Hornets' offensive sets.
The Hornets acquired Lee at the trade deadline from the Memphis Grizzlies. He was immediately slotted into the starting lineup. He is not as versatile a defender as the injured Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, but there are similarities.
Should Jeremy Lin be a starter based on recent performance?
Naturally, that prompted some fan speculation about whether Lin should be moved into the starting lineup.
To that head coach Steve Clifford basically said no -- why would they mess with something going so good.
Carmelo Anthony really wanted to be drafted by Detroit in 2003
Through Howard Beck's recent article (Brotherhood) on Carmelo Anthony's strong friendship with LeBron James, more words have been written again about what would have been if Carmelo was drafted by Detroit with that #2 selection in 2003. So let's go with it at least one more time.
First, from Beck's piece:
"That ball-stopping mentality that Carmelo has? He wouldn't have had that if he was a Piston," Billups said. "We wouldn't let him play like that. He would have been a much better player than he is now -- and he's a great player now.
"This guy would have been," Billups said, pausing to chuckle for a moment, "he would have been an absolute icon, because winning takes you there.
The gears keep turning in Billups' head, and the alternate endings keep unfurling.
"Who even knows if LeBron would have ever gotten through us?" he said. "We probably would have had three championships...What would LeBron have been at this point? Great player, but at what point would he have been able to get through the Pistons, if Carmelo had the supporting cast of us, of this team?"
Ryan Van Dusen at Detroit Sports Nation asks some good questions about Carmelo in Detroit -- two of which are:
Do the Pistons still trade for Rasheed Wallace with Anthony in tow?
Do the Pistons still grind their way through Indiana in the 2004 conference finals?
From Hardwood Paroxysm -- perhaps Carmelo is simply a victim of circumstance?
How they are brought up and developed in those first years can mean everything. That 2003 NBA Draft was as big a lesson in player development as anything else.
LeBron James went to the Cleveland Cavaliers with a big brother in Zydrunas Ilgauskas to provide stability. Darko Milicic went to a veteran-laded Detroit Pistons team that could afford to let him sit on the bench. And his sitting on the bench led to his general lack of development. Carmelo Anthony went to the Denver Nuggets where he had to become "the man" immediately and thrived to bring them to the playoffs in his rookie year. Dwyane Wade went to the talented Miami Heat and was able to grow alongside some other young players and be the force that pushed the team over the top and into the playoffs from the get-go.
A second Bulls defeat at the hands of the Knicks in as many nights.
Hoiberg 'not going to sugarcoat' Bulls' loss to Knicks -- CSNChicago
"I'm not going to sugarcoat it. It's two extremely tough losses. And for me, looking at the winning streak we had when we won three and won four out of five, we came out with a defensive mindset in the first quarter and we set the tone. And the last two nights that hasn't happened."
Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis have shot the ball well in the two wins over the Bulls, going 37/70 from the floor.
AND WHY THE HECK NOT
Over at MLive, Stan Van Gundy talked on camera about the early assessment of Pistons' offseason roster needs...
In what promises to be a "crazy, crazy summer" of NBA salary-cap explosion and free-wheeling spending, the Pistons are down to assessing a few small holes, both positionally and skill-wise. High on the wish list are "maybe quicker, more athletic" defenders and off-the-dribble creators.
When I read "off-the-dribble creators", Oakland University's junior star guard Kahlil (Kay) Felder came to mind. A fairly recent article on Felder here. Really worth a read.
The weekend is about here and let's hope the weather is dandy wherever you are. And Go Pistons! Two victories would set the mood just right.