Under most NBA circumstances, the Detroit Pistons would have been off Wednesday. But after their Tuesday meltdown, Jason Maxiell conceded that he expected the 2 a.m. text message announcing the team should reconvene in a few hours.
Sure enough, the Pistons were summoned to the practice facility for a noon practice, primarily for the purpose of making sure they bore video witness to their malaise in a 105-82 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
"They need to watch it," he said.
"This time of year, whether you’re going to the playoffs or not, normally this is a day off when you have two days," Frank said. "But being embarrassed like we were, we want to watch it, address it, move on and have a great practice tomorrow."
Lawrence Frank, to at least some degree, should be coaching for his job. We don’t know how the Pistons are evaluating Frank, so I can’t say whether he’s meeting their standards. Tom Gores and Joe Dumars might accept the team’s late-season losses, because Frank has given the young players more minutes. Or they might care about winning and only winning.
But it is safe to say Frank losing the players – no matter what other metrics the front office is using – would weigh negatively in his case to return for a third season.
I can’t imagine the players wanted this extra practice. Heck, they didn’t want to play in a game Tuesday. But more than what they want, it’s important what they’ll accept.
Do they still buy into Frank’s plan? Were they attentive during this film session?
Or did they just see it as tedious overkill in an already-lost season? Did the zone out, or worse, develop resentment for Frank?
I’m very interested to see how the Pistons respond against the Raptors tomorrow. Of course, one game will never tell the whole story, but this game might say more than most about Frank.