Mar 5, 2014, 11:07 AM EDT
Joe Dumars might not be replaced by Isiah Thomas, but it still seems unlikely Dumars will return next season as the Detroit Pistons’ general manager.
Dumars is in the final season of his contract. Ownership superseded him to fire his chosen head coach. And he didn’t make a move at the trade deadline.
All signs point to Pistons owner Tom Gores running out the clock on Dumars.
Here’s one more.
sources do not expect Dumars to stay in the position much longer—either he’ll step down or owner Tom Gores will go in a new direction. Dumars, one source said, is weary of the criticism he has received in trying to rebuild the Pistons after constructing a franchise that went to the Eastern Conference Finals six years in a row (2003-2008). The criticism, the source said, fails to account for a dismal Detroit economy and restraints placed on Dumars while the franchise was up for sale and ultimately changed ownership hands.
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Dumars has faced restraints, but so does every general manager.
The ownership change and Michigan’s economy don’t excuse giving $58 million to Ben Gordon, $37.7 to Charlie Villanueva or $54 million to Josh Smith. They don’t excuse practically giving away Arron Afflalo and Amir Johnson. They don’t excuse hiring Michael Curry, John Kuester, Lawrence Frank and Maurice Cheeks.
Even if Dumars had a tighter budget for hiring coaches, he shouldn’t have done so poorly. There are gems to be found. How much is Charlotte paying Steve Clifford?
The best thing Dumars can do is go away quietly when the season ends, letting Pistons fans eventually remember him for being a great player and assembling the 2004 championship team. It at least sounds like he’ll do that.
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