Charles Barkley and TNT crew unleash on the Detroit Pistons’ effort

Detroit Pistons head coach Dwane Casey Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
Detroit Pistons head coach Dwane Casey Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports /

Charles Barkley and the TNT crew did not pull their punches in their assessment of the Detroit Pistons after their most recent embarrassment against Memphis.

The Pistons are 7-30, tied for the fewest wins in the NBA and have lost 18 of those by double digits.

Many have commented on the Pistons’ effort level this season compared to last, as they were bad last year too but always seemed to fight in every game.

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That hasn’t always been the case this season, which has many fans pointing the finger at head coach Dwane Casey. I’ve been on the fence about Casey this season, as I think coaches become easy scapegoats for their team’s poor play and fans tend to ignore the players and rarely call them out.

I also think there is little a coach can do when his team simply can’t make shots.

However, effort level is something he can control, as the Pistons were routinely not running back hard on defense against Memphis and allowed an insane 70 points in the paint with little resistance, something that has to change, whether it’s the rotation or simply calling these guys out, which I am sure he did after the Memphis game.

Here are a few highlights of the TNT crew’s dismantling of the Detroit Pistons, which was not all that fun to listen to. You can watch the whole thing here.

Charles Barkley and TNT crew question the Detroit Pistons’ effort

Here are some choice quotes from the segment, which was not kind to the Pistons:

"“This team don’t (sic) compete at all… it’s a joke.” -Charles Barkley"

I can’t say they don’t compete AT ALL, but the effort has been very inconsistent. The Pistons looked great in their wins against the Spurs and Bucks, but seemingly forgot how to play after that.

"“You can get dunked on but if you’re not in the play, you’re not giving effort… you will never compete in the NBA like that….they’re not competing hard enough to even be in the play.” – Kenny Smith"

I can’t disagree with Kenny here, as there were several plays when the Detroit Pistons were simply beaten down the floor after not sprinting back against Memphis, leading to easy buckets. This rarely happened last season, and Coach Casey deserves some credit for that, but I do think all of this losing has taken its toll on the young guys, most of whom have never lost consistently in their lives.

That is no excuse, and a team that has a talent deficit against most opponents has to out-hustle and out-work them if they want to stay in the game.

"“If you’re not structured to win AND you don’t compete, you end up 7-30”. -Shaquille O’Neal"

Ah, the rare coherent point from Shaq. This one stuck out to me because this Detroit Pistons team does not have the personnel to compete most nights, with too many young guys, too many fringe NBA rotation players and not enough weapons for Cade Cunningham to succeed.

They weren’t supposed to be good this year, which is why I can’t put all of the blame on Dwane Casey. I don’t think there is a coach in the league that could win with this group.

Add in inconsistent effort and that is how you end up with the worst record in the league and headed towards potentially the worst season in franchise history.

I think the TNT crew are clowns at times (particularly Barkley and Shaq) but they do occasionally have good points.

I hope the Detroit Pistons were listening and that we see a team-wide reaction to being called out on national TV.

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