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Thread: ECF: Detroit (1) vs Miami (2), Heat win 4-2

  1. #21
    I was gonna say that this game means more to us than it does to the Heat. But if Miami loses that means they must win a game at the Palace deep in the ECF. No small order. And if we lose, we have to win 3 straight, two at home. Tough, but do-able. (SA almost did it against Dallas)

    I'll be relieved when this series is over, however it ends.

  2. #22
    DADZIG's Avatar
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    Parker: Pistons quickly need to rise from 'Bottomsville'

    This was not what we were expecting

    MIAMI -- Never in a million years could you have expected this.

    No way. No how.

    But the Pistons are at Bottomsville.

    It doesn't get any lower than that in the NBA postseason. There isn't enough space here to list the reasons they are here and who is to blame.

    On Monday night at the American Airlines Arena, it was do-or-die time in yet another postseason series.

    And for a minute, it looked as if the Pistons were going to pull out another gutty victory.

    It didn't happen. This Pistons team is now in its biggest hole.

    Somehow, they are now one game away from elimination in a season that started as one to remember. This current team doesn't resemble the one we saw during the regular season.

    The Miami Heat scored an 89-78 victory over the Pistons in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals.

    Miami has a 3-1 lead in this best-of-seven series.

    And for the first time in three years, the Pistons find themselves in a spot no one thought they would be.

    Three years ago, the Pistons were down 3-1 to the Orlando Magic. But that was in the first round when this group was just starting to take form.

    This is different. This is a team that has done it all over the years so that they would never be put in such a situation again.

    In the past, no matter the hole, you always got the sense that the Pistons could come back against any challenge.

    But this isn't the same team we watched all season long, sharing the basketball, playing defense and winning games like they were going out of style.

    That team had the best record in the league and was guaranteed the home-court advantage throughout the postseason.

    This trip to the NBA Finals was set up to be easier than the previous two. Now, talk of going to the Finals three straight years seems almost silly.

    "We have a lot of fight left in us," Chauncey Billups said. "We have been down 3-1 before, not against a team as good as the Heat, though.

    "They're playing great, man. You've got to give it to them. They're playing great ball. They're great players, playing phenomenal."

    The Pistons will have to fight like they have never fought before to keep this championship run going.

    The Pistons have no one to blame but themselves for what has happened.

    Blaming coach Flip Saunders is too easy.

    The Pistons have played terrible basketball the last two rounds of the playoffs.

    "We have to stay positive," Dale Davis said.

    That's almost impossible. In the biggest game of the season, the Pistons shot 39 percent from the floor, 33 percent in the fourth quarter.

    They committed 11 turnovers and missed 10 free throws.

    "You have to exert so much energy sometimes and you just don't have enough to finish up," said Saunders, whose team trailed, 62-60 to start the fourth. "That's what hurts us sometimes.

    "We've fallen behind in games, fought back, taken leads, but all of a sudden there's no energy to finish off."

    Instead of being able to make that run in the fourth, they faded. The Pistons have responded in so many games before, you honestly had to believe they would fight, if not win, this pivotal Game 4.

    The Pistons' season is now just one game, Wednesday night at The Palace.

    "We can't even think about Friday right now," Billups said about Game 6 in Miami.

    "We have to think about Wednesday. Because if we don't put everything that we have into Wednesday, it won't be a Friday. Our whole focus is to worry about Wednesday's game."

    Who would have thought that?

    No one.
    Find a new slant.

  3. #23
    DADZIG's Avatar
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    Even Ethan J. Skolnick knows we're done.


    SKOLNICK: Forget the Pistons - they're done

    Ethan J. Skolnick
    Sports columnist

    May 30, 2006

    MIAMI -- They're not fine.

    Let's say that now, and clearly, before Chauncey Billups argues otherwise.

    The Pistons are a four-letter word for sure, but fine isn't the first, second, or 40th that comes to mind.

    Try this one: Done.

    Done in this Eastern Conference finals. Done as a force to be feared. Done as a dynasty, if that's what some considered them to be. Done as we knew them.

    When did it end for the Detroit Pistons?

    There's always a defining moment, isn't there? It happens in most every relationship, doesn't it? When you know everything is changed.

    Sometimes, it's subtle, as it was Monday.

    It was 17-12, first quarter. There was still time to set a tone. Dwyane Wade had the ball. He was shooting nearly 70 percent in the series, getting whatever he wants.

    Knocked down seven, get up eight?

    The Bad Boy Pistons of the late 1980s would have tested that advertising slogan.

    The champion Pistons of 2003-04, too.

    Wade dribbled right around Richard Hamilton.

    Too quick.

    Still, nearly 170 inches and 500 pounds of menacing Wallaces, Ben and Rasheed, waited near the rim. Neither man even jumped, let alone shoved.

    They had each been tougher on their coach during the previous day's media availability than they were on that play.

    Wade dunked. Too easy.

    So, yes, the Pistons hung around. They even pulled ahead, by as much as 57-53 on Rasheed Wallace's three, after he chose to show something more than a scowl after halftime.

    But the Heat put them down without too much difficulty.

    Now the Heat figures to do the same in this series, if not Wednesday, then Friday.

    Thus, those of us who have consistently picked the Pistons to represent the East in the Finals will be absolutely wrong. We certainly underrated the Heat. We badly overrated these Pistons.

    Some insist on continuing to do it, almost irrationally. Everyone talking endlessly about the Pistons' resilience has refused to realize these aren't the same Pistons they're talking about, even while staring at six losses in the past nine games.

    "I'll take these five over any five in the world," Rasheed Wallace said of his lineup.

    Those five starters have been the same for Detroit's past 64 playoff contests, but their collective demeanor isn't. Their passion isn't. Their cohesiveness isn't.

    They spent their postgame interview period whining about the officiating. That's what losers do. The free-throw disparity was 47-22. The foul difference was 30-19.

    "You know that's some B.S.," Rasheed Wallace said.

    "I thought it hurt us a lot," Billups said.

    "Breathe on him, it's a foul," Antonio McDyess said of Wade. "Get away from him, he'll make the shot."

    But the Pistons made it easier on the officials than they did on themselves.

    They committed thoughtless fouls. Rasheed Wallace reaching in near half-court with 6:11 left in the second quarter, for his third foul. Billups touching Wade on a turnaround, fallaway jump shot from the corner with 1.5 seconds left in the third quarter, allowing the Heat to enter the fourth with a lead.

    "You can't really play physical," McDyess said.

    It's not easy in the modern NBA.

    Maybe if the Pistons weren't simply shooting jumpers they would have more foul shots.

    Maybe if the Pistons used one of their 30 fouls to truly give Wade pause, it would stop his procession to the stripe.

    Another of Billups' sayings: "If it ain't rough, it ain't right."

    Monday, the Pistons weren't rough in the right way.

    So, now, they're not fine.
    Find a new slant.

  4. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by MoTown
    An epic battle of Good vs. Evil

  5. #25
    Joe Asberry's Avatar
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    Gordon, Villa, RIP,Stuckey-who needs defense anyway?
    It's tempting to say that the Pistons got back to playing their brand of basketball on Wednesday, and that's what allowed them to handily win Game 5.
    Tempting, but wrong. The Pistons won by 13, but they weren't 13 points better, if you get my drift. Detroit's victory margin resulted almost entirely from the glaring disparity in free-throw accuracy between the two clubs.

    Miami shot a wretched 6-for-20 from the stripe, with Jason Williams the lone Heat player to convert more than half his foul shots. Had the Heat converted at their regular-season rate of 69.9 percent, they would have made 14 of those 20 foul shots and finished with 86 points.

    Meanwhile, the Pistons were a scintillating 23-for-26 at the line. Even Ben Wallace got in on the act, hitting two of his four tries after going 5-for-33 in the preceding seven games. The other Detroit players were an eye-popping 21-for-22, including 2-for-2 when Pat Riley went to the desperation "Hack-a-Dice" and sent Antonio McDyess to the stripe (Ben Wallace having already been removed).

    Had Detroit made its regular-season rate of 72.7 percent, the Pistons would have made only 19 of those 26 free throws, and would have ended up with 87 points. Thus, once we account for the uncharacteristic free-throw performances by both sides, what was a comfortable Detroit win becomes an 87-86 Pistons squeaker.

    Obviously, that bodes poorly for Detroit in Game 6. Yes, they're still alive, and that was the objective tonight. But it's hard to argue that the Pistons' recent offensive woes are solved when their three key players (Chauncey Billups, Richard Hamilton and Rasheed Wallace) shot 13-for-44. Plus, the team once again limped home with an 18-point fourth quarter -- six of which came on intentional fouls by the trailing Heat.

    So despite the victory, the Pistons haven't solved any of the problem areas in their puzzling spring slumber. They've just given themselves 48 more hours to find some answers.

    -- John Hollinger

  6. #26
    NOT TO BE FUCKED WITH Uncle Mxy's Avatar
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    And of course, had we both been shooting our regular-season % in three pointers, it'd have been a wide open game again. <yawn>

  7. #27
    Hollinger has interesting points, but if we shoot our normal FT% in a few Cleveland games the ECF would probably have been over by now.

  8. #28
    NOT TO BE FUCKED WITH Uncle Mxy's Avatar
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    Fuck, if Ben shoots his "normal" 42% (ugh) throughout the playoffs, this would've been over.

  9. #29
    A whole lotta IFs go into this game

    we got a chance....

    if Sheed's play matches his mouth

    if Tay brings his game 5 attack

    if Rip shoots the ball instead of looking for a foul..(oh and make the shot)

    if "Mr. Big Shot" pays off his gambling debts before the game (the only the only thing I can think of to explain his play as of late)

    if Ben wants to make money next year

    if Flip throws out Tommy Amaker's playbook

    should be a great one
    (the work on my desk is not getting done today)

  10. #30
    watching a team absolutely crumble from regular season dominance to post season embarassment, was unbelieveable.

    WTF just happened?

    to add insult to injury.....it's 3:30AM and i'm flipping through the TV to, hopefully, take my mind off of things....and ESPN is replaying the game

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