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Pistons owner Tom Gores will address Joe Dumars’ fate swiftly after season

Mar 24, 2014, 9:45 AM EDT

Tom Gores

Before the season, Pistons owner Tom Gores said the playoffs were minimum goal and Joe Dumars’ job was safe.

Well, barring a miracle, Detroit will miss the postseason for the fifth straight season.

Is Dumars’ job still safe?

David Mayo of MLive:

Whether there is a front-office overhaul or not, Gores said it not a decision that will be allowed to fester.

“Yeah, after the season, we’re going to address it right away,” he said.  “We have to.  We have to let the season play out, then we’ve got to get it done.”

The last time Gores said he’d make a decision quickly after the season, he fired Lawrence Frank.

At this point, it would be shocking to see Dumars return. His contract expires after season, and he’s really stumbled these last several years. Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva were disastrous signings in 2009, and Dumars sent what could be a prime lottery pick to the Bobcats to escape Gordon’s deal one year early. He used the resulting cap space on Josh Smith, who might require a lottery sweetener of his own attached to any trade that sends him out.

Gores also addressed Maurice Cheeks’ firing, making this the first time he or Dumars has spoken publicly about it.

“I feel it was the right thing to do and I feel good about it,” Gores said in his first public comments on the firing, save for a press release.  “This is a very young team, a very young team.  So we have to put them in a position grow as much as possible, and I felt like they were not in a position to grow as much as possible.  So I feel good about it.”

Gores said interim coach John Loyer is “doing a great job,” even if that hasn’t been reflected in the standings.

“The team is better than their record,” Gores said.  “They just are.  They’re better than their record.  So I wouldn’t say they didn’t respond.  I would say that they’re just doing their best right now.  I believe in these guys.  I believe in this team.”

Gores seemingly went over Dumars to fire Cheeks, further indicating Dumars is on his way out. That Gores still stands by the firing so resolutely shows he’s not exactly re-thinking his plan in order to give Dumars more control.

In so many ways, the writing is on the wall.

To give Gores credit, it was good for the franchise he addressed the Cheeks firing – even if the circumstances were eye-roll-inducing. Gores never should have gone this long without speaking to the media about Cheeks, and it shouldn’t have take a game a month-and-a-half later in Los Angeles, where Gores lives and the Pistons played the Clippers Saturday, for it to happen.

But the Pistons are honoring the 25th anniversary of their first championship when they play the Heat on Friday. It would have been poor taste to distract from those festivities to address Cheeks (and even poorer taste to keep ignoring it). By getting it out of the way, Gores can put the attention back on members of that 1988-89 team and those celebrating them Friday.

Though that might backfire.

I suspect Dumars – and, if he’s introduced to the crowd, Gores – will be be booed heartily by Detroit fans.

  1. metrocritical - Mar 24, 2014 at 10:42 AM

    In the business world, where money talks, Gores may be a genius, but in the basketball world, Gores is an inarticulate stooge. If he had a clue what he was doing, he would’ve surrounded himself with basketball men from the beginning and cleaned house instead of giving Dumars a chance to hire more poor coaches, make more poor FA signings or orchestrate more poor trades. By all indications, the Gores era will be a dark one, continuing the Pistons’ unfortunate path towards irrelevance.

    • ryanprzy - Mar 24, 2014 at 1:36 PM

      We’re already irrelevant. That’s what these past 5-6 seasons have done.

      I’m not impressed with Gores either. He keeps trying to say the right things but it’s easy to see right through him.

      “The team is better than their record.” And then he follows that up with, “I would say that they’re just doing their best right now.” Those two statements contradict eachother!

  2. cbking05 - Mar 24, 2014 at 11:58 AM

    Hire Zeke

  3. timmons94 - Mar 24, 2014 at 1:27 PM

    Yes because zeke has been such a success since retiring. Holy cow.

  4. DonKellyBaby - Mar 24, 2014 at 1:42 PM

    Too bad we cant fire Gores.

  5. tomtravis76 - Mar 24, 2014 at 1:56 PM

    The izzo talk is going to get louder…

  6. timmons94 - Mar 24, 2014 at 2:01 PM

    William Davidson has to be ticked in heaven. What a train wreck. Dumars is a great guy, won a title but is done. Gores is a clown

  7. void96eater - Mar 24, 2014 at 2:41 PM

    Dumars failed Detroit. Plain and simple.

  8. bballhistorian - Mar 24, 2014 at 4:15 PM

    AI-for-Billups ruined that franchise till this day…

  9. chiadam - Mar 24, 2014 at 5:01 PM

    When will he address throwing like a girl?

    • eugenesaxe1 - Mar 24, 2014 at 6:37 PM

      Harsh :D

  10. eugenesaxe1 - Mar 24, 2014 at 6:39 PM

    The only addressing needed is on the boxes Dumars packs on his way out the door.

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