A positive experience or attitude can be a catalyst. Maybe Mo Cheeks can be a catalyst for the Detroit Pistons. Although he is just under .500 as a Head Coach (284-286) he has had success as an assistant and a player. Hopefully he can bring a winning attitude to a franchise that hasn’t had a winning season since 2007-2008. It’s been a tough fall from grace following their six consecutive conference finals appearances.
Maurice Cheeks played in three NBA championships and won one in 1983. Although he was a great defender as a player his coaching style is still kind of up for debate. He is known league wide for being a great overall guy.
How exactly will he fit into this young Pistons team?
When you look at the players who you expect to build around in this franchise, guys like Andre Drummond, Brandon Knight and Greg Monroe don’t know what it’s like to win at the NBA level. They were all drafted into a losing culture and that’s all they know. They don’t know exactly what it takes to win in the NBA. The championship team in 2004 was a distant memory when these guys came aboard.
Mo Cheeks can’t do it alone. It’s impossible to ask any head coach to turn around this team with the current roster. I’ve said all along that if they don’t really improve the talent on this team, no coach can be a saving grace. Pistons insider Matt Dery of 97.1 tweeted yesterday that Andre Iguodala could be a potential free agent target. Not to toot my own horn but I’ve been barking up that tree since last winter. He is a veteran who is a great locker room guy. He is a really good defender who is very athletic and plays the wing. All of those are a huge need with this team.
Even if they can’t land Iguodala, they need to get a veteran who has won in the past – someone that can be Mo’s right-hand man and help inject a winning attitude into a group of talented young players. Whether it be through trade or free agency, they need help. I’ve said before that if it was up to me, I’d shop just about anyone besides Drummond.
Do I love the signing of Maurice Cheeks? No. Do I hate it? Absolutely not. I think with the right help he can really push this team in the right direction and show them what it takes to win. Once they know what it takes to win and they start winning, it can catch like wildfire.
“Great effort naturally springs from great attitude.” -Pat Riley