Reporting Jeff Riger
By: Jeff Riger
By now you know that the Pistons have officially named Maurice Cheeks as their new head coach. I could tell you how this is Cheeks third time as a head man or how he played in the league for eight seasons but I think there were more important issues going on Thursday that did not even involve Cheeks, instead it was about Joe Dumars.
Here are the five most interesting items that came out of the Cheeks press conference about Dumars.
3. Joe Dumars was never in jeopardy of losing his job.
With all the talk about Dumars and owner Tom Gores, a lot of people wondered why it wasn’t Dumars to go instead of Lawrence France? After all it’s been on Dumars watch that numerous coaches have failed. Dumars was asked if his job was ever in jeopardy Thursday and he replied “no, not at all, wasn’t even a subject, never came up.”
What about a vote of confidence from Gores? “To be honest with you, I’m not big on the vote of confidence; that really doesn’t apply. There wasn’t really any conversation about myself” Dumars said.
2. Dumars contract expiring after this upcoming season.
Even though Dumars is safe for now, that doesn’t mean that he will still have a job next season? After 2013-14, Dumar’s contract will have expired; is he concerned? “I stand here doing my job and I’m going to continue to do this until I don’t. This is not about me today, it really isn’t, we are just trying to get it right, really. I don’t need to get into the speculation of me, I’ll be fine…whatever!”
1. The Phil Jackson factor.
One of the most bizarre stories that came to light during the Pistons search for a new head coach was that the team was using coaching legend Phil Jackson as a consultant. Jackson and Gores go way back so why not talk to one of the greatest that has ever coached? Of course Dumars had to have been offended considering it is his job to hire a coach? “If I was easily insulted I wouldn’t be standing here with some of these people right now. But I’m not easily insulted! You know me, I roll with it, I roll with it, K.I.M…. Keep it moving.” Dumars did talk about Jackson’s role however saying “the thing that he and I talked the most about wasn’t so much the Pistons position, it was just about coaching in general. It wasn’t so much about the Pistons head job.”
I have no clue if the Pistons will be a playoff team or not this upcoming season but it should be fun to continue to follow the saga of Dumars. He’s been here forever but will he continue to be if this year’s squad is like the last couple?