Luke Waltons Forehead presented by the Sports Dude.

Thursday, May 12, 2005 at 10:05 AM

Reality check - stupid Pistons show up.

Someone help me out here, okay, I am not too good at math. Let's see, dating back to last years NBA Playoffs, the Pistons had won eight straight home playoff games. Last night they scored 33 points in the first half, then finished with 83 on the night. So that means, if you subtract 33 from 83 you get 50, right? Again, I am thinking out loud here, looking for help with this math crap. Then, taking that 50 and dividing by three, as in the other quarters not the first, the Pistons averaged 16.67 points per quarter the rest of the way. All I have to say about that is - what the crap?

Then, there is the "Great White Hope" factor here, and again I need your help. Who the hell is Jeff Foster? I mean, watching that game last night you would think Ben Wallace went to the Michael Jackson school of skin bleaching, shaved the afro and switched teams. Who the hell is Jeff Foster? I am only hoping that Ben Wallace will watch the film, store this in his memory and take it personal. Who the hell is Jeff Foster? Well, last night he embarrassed Big Ben and hopefully Ben will make sure that never happens again.

You know, to go off on a tangent here for a second, it kind of reminded me off last years playoff run and how, in each round, there was some whitey on the opposing team that spark a victory over the Pistons. In round one it was Toni Kukoc, round two it was Brian Scalabrinie, in round three it was Austin Croshere and in the Finals it was none other than Luke Walton himself. Now in round one this year there was no hope for the Sixers at all, whitey or not, but maybe now it is out of the Pacers system. If the Pistons get to the next round, who the hell is it going to be for Miami - Christian Laettner? How funny would that be?

Yes, in that last paragraph, I did type the words "if they get to the next round". Can you blame me for it? Look, the stupid Pistons showed up last night and look what happened? Now they have to go into Conseco and at least try and get a win somehow. You know what scares me about that? For the Pacers, this is the NBA Finals. For every single Pacer fan that goes to the game Friday night or Sunday afternoon, the only thing that matters to them is eliminating the Pistons. They don't care about getting to the Finals, although it would be nice. All the fans of Indiana want is to be the team that knocks the Pistons out of the playoffs. To them that reward would most likely be just about as sweet as a Championship, make no mistake about it. Now the Pistons have to go there and figure out a way to win at least one game, and if stupid Pistons show up, I am afraid we will return to Detroit for game #5 down 3-1. That is why last nights loss hurts more than I think the Pistons realize.

Well, I could go on about last nights game forever, but the longer I dwell on it the sicker I get. All I will say in closing is this - stupid Pistons - stay in Detroit, we want the World Champs to play this weekend in Indiana, not you. Lastly, I would like to add that you guys need to give Tayshaun the ball more - there is no one on Indiana that can guard him. He is too much for Stephen Jackson and Reggie Miller, so you guys need to feed him the damn ball. Oh, and by the way, someone please ask 'Sheed to post up more, Jermaine O'Neal can't check him. Later - the sports dude.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005 at 1:35 PM

New Link Added.

In the daily reads section I have added a link to a new sports blog, "Terry 'The Truth' Foster". Yes, as in the former columnist for the Detroit News. Seems as though they didn't renew him to continue writing in their paper. Therefore, out of love for writing and need to communicate with people he decided to start blogging. It is an honor to have a local celebrity linked to here on this site and I wish him all the success. Now fellow sports blogging brethren, we have some real competition! Welcome Terry and check out his blog here!

Later - the sports dude.

at 12:50 PM

Going for the jugular? Let's hope so!

No, the header is not in any reference to the brawl, I don't want to go there. The header is in reference to tonight's game when the Pistons, with a victory, can put a nice struggle hold on the Pacers. The question is, which Pistons team will show up? Hopefully the one that has won eight playoff home games in a row.

Look, we all know the Pistons do it. They have an opportunity to deal a death blow and they seem to be off in space somewhere. Will that spaced out team show up or the team that won on Monday night, even though they played a pretty crappy game. Yes, I know they won, but damn they still played crappy. They shot something like 24 for 40 from the line, they fell asleep sometimes on defense and damn, 'Sheed, Chauncey and Prince combined for 30 points. Shit, Billups had more assists (seven) then he did shot attempts (six). They got the win, but they can not afford to do that again. Clearly fatigue was a factor for the Pacers, but tonight that won't be an issue. Tonight they will be running and gunning on all cylinders and tonight they will play a better game. Hopefully the Pistons can match it and come away with a win.

I have a feeling tonight's game will be a closer one, much more along the lines of the "ugly" basketball we are used to when these two teams play. You know, somewhere along the lines of a 83-79 final score, give or take. For the record, believe it or not, that is the type of basketball I prefer. I watched parts of the Suns-Mavs game the other night and had to turn it off it was so horrible. Damn, I am a six foot white guy with bad knees and I could easily play defense better than anyone on the Suns or Mavs roster. You call the Pistons style ugly, sorry, I think it is the other way around. You can take that West Coast style and keep it, I'll stick to the defense that wins you championships. Anyway, back to tonight's game - whoever imposes their will first on the other team will most likely win, let's just hope it is Ben leading the way again!

That is all I got, later - the sports dude.

Monday, May 09, 2005 at 11:40 AM

Fight Night returns to the Palace - winner takes all in best of seven rounds.

The series to end all series, the brawl reborn, the battle of battles, the… all right, you get the point. Look, I said it before and I will say it again, this is not the series I wanted. To repeat myself yet again, it has nothing to do with the fear of the Pistons losing; there is no way that should happen. My greatest fear is what the Pistons will have left in the tank after this series is over, physically and emotionally, and who the Pacers will cheap shot and injure. So here, in a nut shell, is my look at the Second Round Series against the Indiana Cry Babies, I mean Pacers.

The starting line up – if you take away Jermaine O’Neal, the Pistons are better hands down at every position. Jermaine O’Neal and Dale Davis are the starting “bigs” for the Pacers, up against Ben and ‘Sheed for the Pistons. Either of the Pistons guys that guard O’Neal, I would give it to ‘Sheed, will make an interesting match up all series. So for the sake of argument, let’s go with ‘Sheed on O’Neal that will be fun to watch. The two of them will just about neutralize each other and make for some competitive basketball. Ben will embarrass Dale Davis, a veteran in his own right but he won’t be able to keep up with Ben all series long. Take your pick here at point guard – Chauncey Billups or Jamaal Tinsley. If any of you actually answered Tinsley then shame on you, go get your head checked. Next we go to Rip and Reggie, what can you say there? Reggie is still capable of that “sniper” night, but I think after chasing Rip around through screens for four quarters he may tire come crunch time, so again I take a Piston starter. Next we have Prince and Stephen Jackson – can he even guard Tayshaun? As long as Prince stays aggressive and LB calls plays for him, the Pistons will win that match up as well. Basically, aside from Jermaine O’Neal, the Pistons have the edge everywhere in the starting five.

The bench – I think the Indiana bench can best be summed up as “The Great White Hope”, as in Austin Croshere, Jeff Foster and Scot Pollard and then some CBA guys in Freddie Jones, Anthony Johnson and some other Jones. The Pistons have (should have been comeback player and sixth man) Antonio McDyess, Lindsey Hunter, Carlos Arroyo (who will get more time now that A.I. is gone) and I guess you can throw in Darvin Ham too. Look, the Pistons bench will see more minutes this series and will contribute more, make no mistake about it. Sorry, the “Whitey’s” and the Jones’ on Indiana’s bench are no match for the Pistons, end of story.

The coaches – our last “ex” coach in Carlisle against our next “ex” coach in Brown, as in probably after this season. Not even a contest here, although I still think the job Carlisle did this year is deserved of Coach of the Year honors, believe it or not. But as long as Larry Brown is coaching against anyone, I will always give the edge to LB, he has seen it all, done it all and owns the rights to writing a book on coaching. End of story there as well.

Now that we have that out of the way, let me talk on the couple things that scare me. The first is obviously reliving the brawl, the bomb scare and anything else bad that comes this way with this series. If there was going to be anything that may give the Pacers an edge in this series it would be this. I have said it all along that, on paper, there is nothing the Pacers can possibly do to beat the Pistons in a best of seven series. However, as in all sports, you can take all that paper crap and put it in the garbage, it means nothing. This may be the one thing that is the Pistons undoing, the emotional strain that reliving this brawl may take on them. If the Pacers can use it to their advantage in any way, shape or form it may spell doom for the Pistons and be too much for them to overcome. I guess only time will tell, but hopefully it will not be the Pistons undoing, hopefully by now it has been long enough and it will not bring the boys down, but we will have to see.

Next, as I mentioned before, is what seems to be the pure thug mentality the Pacers have when it comes to this season. They have walked around all year with a chip on their shoulder and that chip is the “Pistons ruined our entire season before it started” chip. If the Pistons take care of business and do what they should do, this series should be over in five or six games easy. But once they take control and once the Pacers realize it, who’s to say they won’t try to take a Piston out? I don’t trust Stephen Jackson, I don’t trust Jamaal Tinsley, Freddie Jones or any of the “Whitey’s” coming off that Pacer bench. Maybe I am going to extremes, maybe I am reaching, but I really don’t put it past any of the Pacers to try and take a starter out for a long period of time, quite possibly the rest of the playoffs. Look, the Pistons should seize control of this series if all the “paper” crap goes the right way, like a 3-1 series lead, sorry, I can honestly see a little goon, thug type tactic coming our way. The Pistons need to take care of business right away, get through this series as quick as possible and not screw around like they did against the Sixers. They were one Willie Green free throw away from trouble in that Philly series and against the Pacers they can not do that for one second. Go for the jugular, bring on the Heat and let’s get it over with before the Pacers have a chance to play thug.

My early prediction is the Pistons in six, much like last years series. In fact, as unoriginal as it sounds, I am going to say all the games are going to be an exact carbon copy of last year. I think the Pistons will lose tonight, win games 2 and three, lose game 4 and win games 5 and 6. Yes, that is the perfect match to last year’s series, but I won some serious money on it here at the office because I predicted it perfectly and no one believed me. Hey, 50 bucks is 50 bucks, so if it worked last year let’s go with it again! I think tonight the Pacers are going to try and send a message, I think the rust will show on the Pistons and they will be down early (see Philly series, game #1 for reference) and although the Pistons will make it close at the end the hole against the Pacers will be too much to overcome. But I think tonight’s loss will be enough of a wake up call for the Pistons to get back to playing ball and it will end up being a positive for our boys. That being said, I will go with the Pistons is six (although I am teetering with five!) and we will have the match up we all have been waiting for in the eastern conference finals, Heat against the Pistons. Hopefully the Wizards will at least show up for one game and make Shaq work a little, but we only can get so much right?

Well, that is all I got for now. Until next time when we can all talk again – later! The sports dude.

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