Question the Pistons' Bench Strength in the Playoff Stretch

Steven DeAngelisContributor IFebruary 11, 2008

All year long I have been confident this Detroit Pistons team would plow through the first and second round of the playoffs.

For the most part, I still feel good about their chances.

They are seated right behind the league's finest, the Boston Celtics.

How could anyone be displeased with how the Piston's season is unfolding?

While I'm not unhappy, I am becoming concerned about one facet of this team as they inch closer to the playoffs.

Aside from the obvious assets of a championship team, there is one factor that rises above the rest, experience.

Many professionals in all industries weigh your experience as the most relevant factor to success. 

Trust me though, it's not the Piston's backcourt that I am so concerned about, or any of the starting lineup for that matter.

It's the bench.

Starters from the Spurs, Hornets, Celtics, Magic, and Suns will do their thing come playoff time, you can count on that; but what about the rotation players?

Those "sixth man" players start to shine in the long stretch of the playoffs.

When it comes to bench talent, the Piston's aren't lacking, but if you throw years played into the equation, certainly they become questionable.

Combined, the Piston's bench has 15 years of NBA experience, but less than five years of playoff experience.

Make any sense yet...keep reading.

Ask yourself, will it make a difference that the Spur's bench brings 36 years of experience to the table? How about 25 years for the Celtics bench or 30 years off the Mavrick's bench.

Now your getting the picture.

Piston's coach Flip Saunders has been pushing the starters to the 35+ minutes mark, this won't last all season long with this talented, yet aging group.

Which in turn means that they will be counting on help in the playoffs from Rodney Stuckey, Amir Johnson, Ronald Murray, and Jason Maxiell.

Don't misinterpret my unkind words, I love these guys as much as the next fan, but I can't be sure they will come through during strenuous postseason play.

Elite teams like the Celtics, Spurs, Suns, Magic, Hornets, and Mavricks have players coming off the bench who have tasted the title and know what it takes to win.

Would it kill the Piston's to make one more move?

Acquire a sixth man with the experience to win a title. Let us be honest, this Piston's starting line is burning at the bottom of the wick. It's now or never fellas.