It seems like the Pistons are unable to get through a season without player-coach drama. And the seemingly annual occurrence is upon us after the Pistons took a 106-82 thumping from the Washington Wizards on Saturday night. Pistons coach Maurice Cheeks benched starting forward Josh Smith for the start of the third quarter for the second time this season and Smith made it clear afterward that he was bothered by it. “I live to play this basketball game,” Smith said in the Verizon Center visitor’s locker room. “It’s an honor for me to play it. When anybody challenges or anything about the fact about me not wanting to play I take real offense to it. “Whatever decision that somebody makes beyond my control I can’t control it. It’s a question you have to ask somebody that has that power.” It was expected the Pistons would come out with a better effort after the stinker Friday night at Orlando, but funk continued. The defense was a shambles as John Wall was a one-man fast break. His penetration led to easy baskets and the lead steadily grew throughout the first half. After Bradley Beal erupted for 10 points in the last 3:53 of the first half to turn a nine-point deficit into a 62-41 runaway by halftime Cheeks obviously had seen enough.
Josh Smith calls benching 'unfair'
Detroit Free Press | Dec 30