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December 20, 2014 Updates

Johnson's dunk on Andre Drummond made it 95-75 midway through the fourth and on Toronto's next possession, Drummond smashed into Johnson with a forearm and hip smash. That set off a melee that saw Drummond get a flagrant foul and four technicals called. At least one Raptors fan was ejected at the same time after a verbal altercation with the Pistons' Josh Smith. "That was nasty, but that's basketball," said Johnson. "I don't expect anything less from anybody that's trying to win. Frustration sets in when you want to win — no hard feelings." USA Today Sports

December 19, 2014 Updates

They probably wouldn't put out a sign that says "everyone must go," but the feeling could be close to that in Auburn Hills. Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy confirmed his franchise is making calls to other teams to shake things up. "Yeah, we're looking to get better and we're looking to put ourselves in a better place down the road, too," Van Gundy said. "We're active, we're talking to people." Detroit News

December 18, 2014 Updates
December 17, 2014 Updates

Two days after Greg Monroe said he wasn't seeking a trade from the Detroit Pistons, his agent, David Falk, emphatically reiterated his client's position. "He made a commitment to Stan (Van Gundy) when he took the qualifying offer that he would work as hard as he could and help the team as best that he could and he would keep his mind open and at the end of the season, he would evaluate all of his options," Falk said. "That was his plan in July, and that's his plan in December and that will probably be his plan in February and will be his plan when the season ends." Their comments were in response to a Sporting News story that suggested Monroe wanted out of Detroit at any cost. Falk refuted that. USA Today Sports

"Greg is an intelligent man. I've represented him from day one. There are no other credible sources who would indicate if wants a trade," Falk said. "He does not want a trade. He wants to honor his commitment to Stan and give it the year and evaluate everything at the end of the season." USA Today Sports

Monroe, 24, also wants to retain his Bird rights – an in-season trade on a qualifying offer would negate that – in case a team Monroe wants to play for after this season doesn't have the cap space to sign him to the deal he seeks. That team could obtain him in a sign-and-trade with the Pistons. USA Today Sports

Here's another important piece to Monroe waiting until the summer – beyond preferring to have his choice. Why would a team want to give up a player or draft pick for Monroe when that teams knows it can get Monroe without giving up assets? And look at it from Monroe's perspective: he wants a team to keep its assets so it can be as good as possible when he joins. USA Today Sports

Where the Pistons put themselves in this position was by not trading him. Although Monroe couldn't get a max offer sheet from another team, he did receive substantial interest — and Portland and Atlanta tried to facilitate trades for him. Detroit News

The Pistons wanted point guard Jeff Teague and sharpshooter Kyle Korver in return for Monroe, and the Hawks balked — perhaps with knowing Monroe could walk to them the summer of 2015, right into their cap space without having to part with valuable assets. Detroit News

In 2010, the NBA fined Dumars $500,000 for leaking multiple confidential league memos to Wojnarowski, according to multiple sources. This matches the third largest publicly known fine the league has ever handed down. The NBA decided that too many memos were making it into the media, so they conducted a sting operation over several months. They would change a few words or numbers in different team’s copies of otherwise identical memos, so that when the memos leaked they could spot the small differences and trace them back to the leaker. This approach caught Dumars red-handed, as well as an executive from another team who was fined $12,500 for leaking to a draft-focused website. The New Republic

December 16, 2014 Updates

At this point, Smith is the only player the team (5-20) has discussed trading. But even that is just preliminary; teams are scared off by Smith's price tag and the evidence that he's a declining player. Detroit Free Press

Pistons coach and president Stan Van Gundy has promised to take a hard look at the roster and rotation during next week's Christmas break. And owner Tom Gores, who has said several times in the past that he thinks the roster has good players, didn't disagree with his first-year executive. "We've got to reassess what we're doing, and that's one thing great about Stan: He's not sitting around saying, 'Hey, we're just going to stick to the game plan.' He's changing things up," Gores said. "You've seen, he's got a different starting lineup at times. He reassesses things every single minute. So we're just trying to make progress." Detroit Free Press

But despite the worst start of his four-year stewardship, he remains confident in Van Gandy, who was given a five-year, $35-million contract in May to resurrect the franchise. The Pistons have a six-year streak of not making the playoffs -- the longest in the Eastern Conference. "I'm very, very confident about that, and you guys know me well enough to know that if I wasn't confident, I'd give you signals that I wasn't," Gores said. "I'm very confident that he's doing everything possible. He's losing more sleep than any of us here to get us the progress we need." Detroit Free Press

 

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