First, the report/tweet, from the New York Times’ Marc Stein (who has been on this since... January? Before the All-Star Break, at the absolute least):
Detroit has expressed interest in hiring the former Pistons star Chauncey Billups to work in tandem with Arn Tellem in a totally revamped front office, according to league sources— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) March 20, 2018
Next, the Twitter punditry:
Arn Tellem moving from business side to basketball ops would not be a surprise, from what I've heard. https://t.co/lNkCpOdeJW— Jeff Zillgitt (@JeffZillgitt) March 20, 2018
I guess we will find out how much of a "team player" Stan Van Gundy is https://t.co/TbGTPHyYxT— Danny Leroux (@DannyLeroux) March 20, 2018
“It’s about what happened this year, what we’re going to do and our future,” said Gores, who added that he hasn’t given up on Van Gundy or the season. “Stan is a team player, and we’re going to discuss it. We’re not winning enough, so we have to talk about that.”
Lastly, analysis of said news:
A takeover of basketball operations by Arn Tellem would not be not unexpected or shocking. As mentioned, Stein (one of the more plugged-in NBA reporters) has been on this possibility for a while. The Pistons have not been as successful as anyone would have hoped under Stan as President of Basketball Operations, and it’s not unreasonable that he lose that title as a result.
The notion of Chauncey Billups as (presumably) general manager is a little more surprising. Yes, Chauncey is a Piston legend, who has expressed interest in a front office position in the NBA, but he’s also:
- Never held a front office position in the NBA
- Already turned down a front office position from a team in a better position than the Pistons
- Would not really be in contention for this job if he wasn’t “Chauncey Billups.”
Of course, if Arn Tellem becomes the PoBo, and Chauncey becomes the GM, what would that mean for Stan Van Gundy? Would he stay the head coach and finish out the remaining year of his contract? Would he follow up on his promise to retire to his lake and beach homes? One thing I can guarantee you is that Stan will not address these reports during the season, because he’s... himself.
What do you think of the possibility of Chauncey as GM? We are... split:
UPDATE: From the Free Press’ Vince Ellis:
#Pistons ownership and Platinum Equity spokesman Mark Barnhill has one-word response to report Pistons have expressed interest in former Piston Chauncey Billups to join front office: “False.”— NerdOnPistons ♂️ (@Vincent_Ellis56) March 20, 2018
That is... a pretty strong denial.
“I’m very happy with the on-air opportunities ESPN has given me to talk about the NBA in the studio & at games. Of course, I love my Pistons & Detroit. But I would never push for a job with any NBA franchise that is not open. That’s not part of my character,” - Chauncey Billups.— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpearsESPN) March 20, 2018
This, on the other hand, is pretty standard. Respectful, but standard.