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Dos Los -- Carlos Delfino and Carlos Arroyo -- need to play better off the Pistons bench, substitute head coach Gar Heard says.


Both went scoreless in Monday night's loss to Dallas, as did the usually dependable Antonio McDyess.


And Lindsey Hunter has missed 17 of his last 18 shots from the field.


"It was just one of those things," said McDyess, who took just two shots. "It seems like every time I touch the ball lately I haven't been able to get an easy shot. Some of it is getting into a rhythm. It seems like I'm thinking a lot when I get out on the court."



The Dallas bench outscored Detroit's, 26-2. The two points were a season low for the Piston bench. The reserves were guilty of four turnovers and nine fouls. More important, they continued to struggle on defense.


"We need Carlos to start playing the way he did when he first came here," Heard said of Arroyo, a point guard who came from Utah in a January trade. "He's holding the ball a little too long, especially on the pick-and-roll. Delfino needs to go out there and play and forget about his knee. He seems to be tentative because of the knee. We're going to need our bench in the playoffs."


Delfino hasn't been the same since December, when he had surgery on his right knee. If he were playing better, he could get valuable minutes behind forward Tayshaun Prince and guard Richard Hamilton.


Heard said the team likely would use fewer players during the playoffs and that if Delfino couldn't contribute, Hunter and Arroyo could play together in the backcourt, making that unit small.


Heard said center Elden Campbell would have to play some against big teams in the playoffs, particularly Miami and Shaquille O'Neal.


"We're going with the three big guys right now," Heard said of Ben Wallace, Rasheed Wallace and McDyess. "We're going to need Elden in certain situations. We need to get our bench going because we can't play our starters 45 to 48 minutes per game."

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Pistons acting head coach Gar Heard expressed distress over his team's lack of bench production before Monday's game.

Imagine his concern afterwards, as the Pistons' bench was outscored 26-2 in a 95-88 loss to the Mavericks.


"We fought back into the game and then you put the bench in and hope they can hold it close," Heard said. "That didn't happen."

Carlos Arroyo, Carlos Delfino and Lindsey Hunter have not scored a point in two games. The only two points off the bench Monday were provided by Darvin Ham.


"We have to take it upon ourselves to come off the bench with fire," said Ham. "You just have to come out, play hard and try to be as cohesive as possible."

A lack of practice time -- the Pistons have played six games in the last nine days -- has certainly derailed any cohesiveness, as well as the reinsertion of both Delfino and Ham into the mix.

"We still have a lot of new guys on the bench we're trying to work in," Heard said. "It is a matter of just having a little time to work them in."

Delfino, Arroyo and Hunter haven't had a point in 41 combined minutes. Antonio McDyess, the leading scorer off the bench, has reached double figures in scoring once in nine games.

"The bench has to give us something," Heard said. "I've been playing the starters too many minutes."


Every starter played at least 44 minutes in the overtime victory against Boston Saturday, and every starter played 38 or more Monday. In those two games, the bench was outscored 55-10.

Heard said it was time that Arroyo and Delfino start picking it up.

"(Arroyo) just has to run the team and pass the ball," Heard said. "He's been holding the ball too much, especially on the pick and roll. He's trying to make scoring plays. He just needs to get rid of the ball.

"I want him to start playing the way he did when he first got here."


He also needs to start defending. He allowed rookie Devin Harris to dribble from one end to the other and drain a back-breaking three-pointer in the final 3.6 seconds of the third quarter.

"That was the turning point of the game," Heard said.

As for Delfino, Heard said, "He needs to get his confidence back and stop worrying about his (surgically repaired right) knee. He needs to forget about the knee, realize he's healthy and just go out and play. He's worrying about the knee more than anything else."
 

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Could Gar Heard be any more clueless? The bench should be carefully managed and and used so that our attack is relentless for 48 plus minutes, every game. They are by no means just a wild card that you play when your main guys get tired and hope for the best. Hearing Heard complain like this shows nothing but unproffesionalism and a lack of understanding of how to do his job.

From what I've seen, players are just put in when the person above them on the depth chart gets tired. That may work in NBA Live but not here, is the word momentum even in this guys vocabulary.
 

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Lindsey sucks.

The only way for the Dos Los to play better is to play more. Giving them six minutes a night isn't going to tell you much.
 

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I'm happy he called out the bench. It seems like he's been more of a spectator than a coach, at least he's doing something proactive.
 

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Yeah he called out the bench, but did he take any of the blame for the bench being so useless? He has just as much to do with the bench struggles as the bench players themselves. His substitutions are haphazard to say the least. He doesnt allow for any natural flow or progression for them coming in. Is it my imagination or were Dyess and Arroyo playing pretty decent whe Gar took over? Gar then quickly fell in love with playing Lindsey and cut into Arroyos minutes. Now Hamm is getting minutes and Delfino sits. he coaches responsibility is to find a way for these guys to flourish on the court. If they cant grasp the offensive sets? try something different to play to their strengths.
 

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from what i've seen,read and heard your bench stinks. now is the time to tap darko on the shoulder before the game and say you're playing in the 1st quarter and you're playing in the 2nd,3rd and 4th so get ready. lets establish he cant do any worse than the crap coming off the bench now and then play the kid. of course that would take some balls on the part of the coaches, so i dont expect to see it but wouldnt it be interesting. someone convince me he couldn't do better than 2 pts off the bench. i have alway believed if you put people in a postion to succeed more often than not they surprise you.
 

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rainman said:
from what i've seen,read and heard your bench stinks. now is the time to tap darko on the shoulder before the game and say you're playing in the 1st quarter and you're playing in the 2nd,3rd and 4th so get ready. lets establish he cant do any worse than the crap coming off the bench now and then play the kid. of course that would take some balls on the part of the coaches, so i dont expect to see it but wouldnt it be interesting. someone convince me he couldn't do better than 2 pts off the bench. i have alway believed if you put people in a postion to succeed more often than not they surprise you.
I think that is one of the most reasonable pro-Darko posts I've read in a while. Although I would love to see it actually happen I have no doubt in my mind that it won't. At least not this year. It's unfortunate. I'd almost suggest this idea just to light a fire under the rest of the whole team. We can't keep this up.
 

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Seemingly everyone says something different than Gar Heard. No suprise there...

The Pistons want to make one thing clear: Don't blame the bench for the last few dismal games.

The players went on the offensive Tuesday, wondering why finger-pointing for the Pistons' recent poor play -- four losses in five games -- has turned toward the reserves.

This group -- guards Carlos Arroyo and Lindsey Hunter; and forwards Darvin Ham, Antonio McDyess and Carlos Delfino - teamed to score two points Monday night in a home loss to the Mavericks.

"When we were winning and we struggled, nobody asked nothing," a clearly annoyed Arroyo said. "And now we lose and we struggle, and everybody's asking us, the guys from the bench. That's not fair. I don't agree with that at all. I feel like every time we're out there, the team is down and we're trying to give some energy. The other team has a lot of momentum, so it's really hard.

"We've all got to bring that energy, not just the bench. I am not going to blame myself or McDyess or Lindsey or Carlos. I don't feel that's right for us. I feel that everybody should step up and play better. We're losing, but everybody is blaming the bench. They start looking at us like we didn't contribute. But the reality is, we lost. We only played like, what, 10 minutes?"

Starter Tayshaun Prince agreed with Arroyo.

"Man, it's not the bench, I don't know what you all keep saying it's the bench," Prince said. "If you look at the way we've been playing 40 minutes per game, the bench can't do nothing in eight minutes, you know what I am saying? Last 7-8 games, we've been putting them in the game when we've been down eight, 10 points. What can they do then?"

The Pistons believe the whole team, not just the reserves, is responsible for this two-week funk.

"Your bench's job is to come in and hold the fort, not to get you back into the game," coach Larry Brown said. "And I think we're putting a lot of pressure on our bench. It was like earlier in the year. Remember when we were struggling to start games, and the bench came in and everybody was saying that our bench is not productive?

"I think a lot of it is because we didn't start off the game the right way, and when they came back into the game, there was a lot of pressure on them. We just have got to find a way to start off good where Carlos (Arroyo) or Dyess or Lindsey or Ronald (Dupree) don't have to come in where they have to get us back in the game. Once that happens, things will work out."
 

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Lope31 said:
I think that is one of the most reasonable pro-Darko posts I've read in a while. Although I would love to see it actually happen I have no doubt in my mind that it won't. At least not this year. It's unfortunate. I'd almost suggest this idea just to light a fire under the rest of the whole team. We can't keep this up.

i think when you get another coach in there, and i dont consider heard anything but a mouthpiece for brown, you'll see darko all of a sudden start to play. they'll spin it in the front office like its time or he's really been playing well in practice but we know the real story there. last year darko's being at the end of the bench was ok because they had all the pieces in place and had guys like memo and corliss off the bench. now though their lack of getting this kid ready has come back to haunt them. as far as most fans around the league go you could insert bill laimbeer as the head coach tonight and it wouldnt be too soon.
 

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Darvin Ham was ready and waiting for the media after the Pistons' 99-82 victory over the Kings on Wednesday night.

"Don't be messing with our bench," he said in mock anger. "What are y'all going to write now?"

Well, the Pistons' reserves, much-maligned in the last couple of days, outscored the Kings' reserves 29-16.

Antonio McDyess made his first four shots and finished with 13 points. Lindsey Hunter took over at point guard after Chauncey Billups was ejected and contributed nine points and four steals. Ham had three points, a rebound and two forced turnovers in a four-minute span of the second quarter.

"I think when we get to play, we've got one of the best benches in the league," Ham said. "The problem is, our starting five is so good you can't always see it. Our starters are young, man. They don't get tired and they play a lot of minutes.

"But when we get our time, it works out like it did tonight."


The reserves, playing fewer minutes, were outscored 55-10 in the two previous games and drew public criticism from coach Gar Heard. The last couple of days, Ham said, the reserves were extremely motivated.

"Joe (Dumars, team president) talked to us the other day," Ham said, "and reaffirmed his belief in us. And that gave everyone all the confidence in the world.

"We all, especially us bench guys, really banded together. We want to show that we're ready to start playing, we're getting ready to win this thing (the NBA championship) again."


The bench's mission?
http://www.detnews.com/2005/pistons/0503/31/D04-135199.htm
 

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rainman said:
i think when you get another coach in there, and i dont consider heard anything but a mouthpiece for brown, you'll see darko all of a sudden start to play. they'll spin it in the front office like its time or he's really been playing well in practice but we know the real story there. last year darko's being at the end of the bench was ok because they had all the pieces in place and had guys like memo and corliss off the bench. now though their lack of getting this kid ready has come back to haunt them. as far as most fans around the league go you could insert bill laimbeer as the head coach tonight and it wouldnt be too soon.
When Darko finally starts to play I don't think the front office will really need to spin anything considering Joe D has said since the day he was drafted that he probably wouldn't play much the first couple of years.

And while the bench has struggled a lot this year, it hasn't struggled up front. Antonio McDyess has been excellent all year and there really is no justification for anyone other than the Wallaces eating into his minutes. The struggles have been at the point and wings. Larry said earlier this year that if Darko was a small forward he'd be playing every night.

The bench isn't what it was last year, but they still have the best 3 man rotation in the league up front.
 

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I agree. Darko is being hurt by his postion more then anything at this point but thats not a bad thing for the Pistons. I have no probelm letting Darko take his time because we honestly don't really have a huge need for another big man yet. I just don't understand why Heard played EC over Darko with one minute to go in the SAC game last night.
 

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Mike luvs KG said:
When Darko finally starts to play I don't think the front office will really need to spin anything considering Joe D has said since the day he was drafted that he probably wouldn't play much the first couple of years.

And while the bench has struggled a lot this year, it hasn't struggled up front. Antonio McDyess has been excellent all year and there really is no justification for anyone other than the Wallaces eating into his minutes. The struggles have been at the point and wings. Larry said earlier this year that if Darko was a small forward he'd be playing every night.

The bench isn't what it was last year, but they still have the best 3 man rotation in the league up front.

k.g. plays the sf postion at times as does dirk, keith van horn.....point is if you want to get darko out on the court you put him out there. if larry made that comment about darko playing every night if he was a sf i'll say thats pure b.s.
 
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