Thursday, June 09, 2005


The NBA Finals start tonight, and the Detroit Pistons are rumored to be involved. I'm hoping (and assuming) that all my jinxing mojo has gone toward the Tigers and that this post will be in no way detrimental to the 'Stons. Of course, if you read the commentary online, you'd pretty much assume that the champ had already been decided anyway. (As an aside, where have we heard this dismissal of the Pistons before? Against a certain team with a certain inhumanly large and athletic center? No, no the Lakers, although we heard it there too. The correct answer, going all the way back to the last round, is Miami). The new line, emanatingly particularly from the boys at, is that the "Pistons don't get any respect" angle to the Finals is already played out.

My favorite recent example is this "wish list" from Marc Stein. He says that the Pistons don't get any respect line is "so played out that we can all finally stop addressing (it)." Mr. Stein, along with a couple of the other commentators at the site, have adopted a line that boils down to the following: "We respect the Pistons, so quit complaining. If everything goes right for the Pistons, they might win a game or two against the Spurs. Spurs in 5 or 6." Maybe it's just me, but I don't think this is what Pistons fans are talking about when they talk about respect. Mr. Stein's "wish list" is especially rich. At the top of the column, he reiterates that he has picked the Spurs in 6. Then, he later argues that the Pistons' best chance is basically to assault the Spurs, and if that doesn't work the Spurs will probably win in 5. An appreciation of the Pistons' talents is not exactly dripping from that analysis.

All I can say is, we'll see. Unlike Mr. Stein, I, and I think most Detroiters, actually do appreciate and respect San Antonio, because in a lot of ways their team is just like ours. I expect a hard-fought, seven game series. But if San Antonio goes down the way the Lakers did, Mr. Stein will have some series egg on his fact, like I'm sure he did last year.


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