Flip Saunders Fired? Where does Detroit go from here?

Chris HesterSenior Analyst IJune 3, 2008


The picture above says it all.  Like Flip, I am sure there are many NBA fans worldwide scratching their collective heads right now.  Flip, after a 176-70 regular season record, a 30-21 postseason record and leading the Pistons to three straight conference final appearances, finds himself without a job this afternoon.

Now, I can understand that Joe Dumars and the Piston front office expects the best, but honestly, where do they go from here?  The "free agent" coaching market isn't exactly booming this season! Mike D'Antoni was probably the one "marquee" name available and he has already been scooped up by the New York Knicks. 

One would imagine if Flip decides he wants to continue coaching, he will have little trouble landing a new job (Doug Collins may want to tell Chicago "yes" pretty soon), but I am completely lost on what direction Detroit goes now. They are an aging team with an "old" nucleus and no true offensive threat.

Now don't get me wrong, Billups, Hamilton, Prince and Wallace are certainly very talented offensively, but in today's day and age you need that one guy that can simply take over when needed.  A Kobe Bryant/Lebron James/Chris Paul/Deron Williams type of player, and Detroit simply does not have that guy on their current roster.

The Eastern Conference is getting stronger each year and Detroit may have just taken a large step back.  Is it time for Tom Izzo to give the NBA a chance? If you are a Pistons fan, do you really want to trust your team in the hands of an inexperienced NBA coach? 

However, according to report, assistant coach Michael Curry seems to be a lock of becoming the next coach of the Pistons. He has been an assitant for a few years but has never been a head coach before. I don't think he will be the right guy to motivate and keep the Pistons core players hungry and urgent.

As the picture states, to me, this move is a real head scratcher.