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Monday, November 22, 2010

Detroit Pistons need to find Austin Daye minutes

Detroit Pistons forward Austin Daye was out of the starting lineup Sunday against the Washington Wizards and for the second time this season did not play at all. Daye has started 11 of Detroit's 13 games, but has not played in the two games he did not start.

What has Daye done to deserve to be benched for entire game? Nothing. Even head coach John Kuester admits he starts Jason Maxiell in favor of Daye because of matchups.

It's clear Daye is playing out of position right now at power forward. At 6-foot-11, 205 pounds there are many NBA power forwards he will struggle to defend. It's understandable if Kuester wants to start Maxiell in Daye's place based on matchups. But what is not understandable is why Daye is not playing at all if he doesn't start.

Daye is a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses. He's a 6-11 guy that can handle the ball and shoot the 3 (51.7 percent this season). There is no reason he should not leave the bench for a Pistons team clearly in rebuild mode (even if they won't admit it).

Daye has a future in the NBA and should be a part of the Pistons' long term plans. He should be as close to untouchable as any of the current group of Pistons' players.

For Daye's long term growth and confidence he needs to play. Yes, Detroit has won both games he has sat, but the Pistons also beat the Kings and Wizards without him, not exactly the NBA's elite. If Detroit wants to start Daye at power forward then they need to stick with it. Let him take his lumps and hopefully he will be a better player for it.

If the Pistons don't see Daye as a NBA power forward then find him minutes somewhere else, even if it's at the expense of Tayshaun Prince or Tracy McGrady, who are not in the Pistons long term plans.


Blogger Larry Baker said...

I'm glad you posted this. While we were watching the game, we were considering how Tracy McGrady (who was completely unremarkable Sunday), was gobbling up Daye's minutes at the 3. This makes no sense to us. Is the McGrady experiment more important than Daye's development for the Piston's future. Neither McGrady nor Hamilton (yes, I know he was the overtime "hero") have really earned their time on the court while Daye has been absurdly overmatched at the #4. This whole scenario is part of a greater context-- the Pistons seem to be in an NBA purgatory with no plan for escaping. We wait for new ownership and BIG changes.

November 22, 2010 at 6:37 AM 

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