Searching Within: Rodney Stuckey Shall Find His Way
This isn't another article about fixing the Pistons.
This is turning lemons into lemonade.
This is an enigma, a sudden truth that will take your mind by storm. This is a message, a statement that must be said. This is a prophetic exclamation, a hammer slamming down on the hard rock of ignorance, a butterfly fluttering through the dank walls of the darkest cave in hell, a ray of sunshine glimmering on the cold, unloving ice of disbelief.
With patience, hard work, and a little faith, Rodney Stuckey will become our John Wall.
Why of course! In the NBA, a second round draft pick can lead a team to glory, and a No. 1 pick can bring shame upon the proudest franchise, so why is this such a stretch?
Simply because we're stubborn. We don't want risks. We want answers.
Well, how about a question?
Why can't we trust Stuckey, a player that's stepped up for his team? He's consistent, he's brave, he's getting better defensively, and he creates mismatches on offense, right?
Yes, this is all true. But he hasn't become the one thing that the Piston's lack: an engine.
During the glory days, Chauncey Billups was the engine, and the rest of the starting four served as backup engines. When Billups left, the backup engines basically became spare parts.
The players have been taking turns as the engine as if they were playing hot potato; no one really wants the burden. The situation therefore results in frustration and premature overheating.
In a few words, this team is confused.
So, can Rodney Stuckey really be our engine?
Yes. But to get there, he has to take the road less traveled. Consciously or unconsciously, we judge Stuckey by what Billups has done for us.
That's not fair to either player. Chauncey has the heart of a leader, Stuckey has the heart of a lion.
So if Stuckey wants to be the heart of the team, he needs to look not at those behind him, nor beside him.
He has to look within himself.
Joe Dumars dropped the keys to the Piston's future in Stuckey's pocket. So why draft a locksmith?
We can trust Joe Dumar's judgement. For the most part, Charlie Villanueva and Ben Gordon have played well. If not for the injury epidemic, this team would be in the thick of the playoff race.
So what should we do now?
Relax. Things are starting to mold together. Stuckey has averaged seven assists in his last eight games. Rip Hamilton is averaging over five assists the past nine games. Jason Maxiell has done a solid job filling the gap at center.
Jonas Jerebko's been as solid as always. Tayshaun Prince has resembled the old Tayshaun. And Villanueva's been the three-point threat we've expected him to be since the beginning.
Therefore, is there a reason to worry?
Stuckey, take the road less traveled. It'll make all the difference.
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