The latest word from Detroit: The Pistons have announced that they do NOT plan to fire coach Flip Saunders.
Speculation had been mounting this week that Flip might be a man on the outs.
After all, the Pistons ended the season without a championship. This was not the preferred result. The preferred result was, in fact, to win the championship.
Sure, the Pistons didn't get upset in the first round like the Dallas Mavericks—but expectations are different in Detroit, where the hometown favorites have won three NBA titles in 60 years, and enjoy a long tradition of above-averageness.
In short: This ain't any old team. The Pistons win championships. Sometimes. Ideally, they would have won one this year under Saunders, because that's what they normally do.
About five percent of the time.
Misguided pundits have suggested that the Pistons' demise should be attributed to LeBron James instead of Flip Saunders. Evidently, the King unleashed a stunning performance in the Eastern Conference Finals, of the kind unseen since the days of Michael Jordan.
Or so the argument goes.
If there were any legitimacy to such reasoning, one could easily counter with a simple point: Flip Saunders should have told his team to stop LeBron.
Play tighter defense and keep the kid from scoring—how hard it could it be?
The millions of fans who watched the series identified the problem. Even a basketball novice could have told you that James' piss-your-pants-in-awe heroics were a significant impediment to Detroit's championship dreams.
But Saunders did nothing. He let it happen.
It was like he didn't even know what was going on. He acted like a basketball guru who was witnessing one of the most outstanding athletic performances in a decade.
It's really shameful.
And dare I even mention last season? Dare I speak about his loss to the eventual-champion Miami Heat?
Let's be honest: Flip Saunders has demonstrated a pattern of losing. In fact, in every single season in which Flip Saunders has coached the Pistons, they have failed to win the NBA Championship.
He could coach the team for another thousand years, and if his track record is any indication, the likely outcome would be a loss in the NBA Eastern Conference Finals.
As one who does not enjoy watching losers, I have decided to get rid of my Pistons season tickets and turn my attention to next season's American Idol. With Flip behind the wheel, there is no way this team can win it all. And if they don't win it all, why did I even bother watching the sport to begin with?
I'm a Pistons fan, and when my team fails to win the NBA Championship, I go to bed disappointed.
Thankfully, they have met my expectations one year after another.
Except for the 57 instances in which they haven't.