by Steve St-Pierre
Pistons Sports Writer
In Play Magazine
From the Current issue...
The Pistons have a brand new coach, four rookies, several new veterans, a faster style of play, and it has shown throughout the 2009 NBA Preseason.
Detroit made plenty of noise this summer by signing four key free agents in Ben Gordon, Charlie Villanueva, Chris Wilcox and Ben Wallace. Gordon has looked like his old self, coming off the bench and scoring in bunches, but Villanueva and Wilcox have hardly played, whether due to injury or simply for match-up purposes. Wallace, on the other hand, has been a pleasant surprise after being named the current starting power forward.
“(Wallace has) been outstanding all preseason…” says John Kuester, Pistons Head Coach. “…The guy’s still got juice. I keep telling people…he’s a leader. He’s somebody that I trust, that I know is going to be able to tell me when I’m right, when I’m wrong, and his energy is contagious for our team.”
Joining Wallace in the starting lineup has been veterans Rip Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince, Rodney Stuckey and Kwame Brown, who was expecting to compete with Wallace and Wilcox for the starting center spot. Villanueva is anticipating coming off the bench until he proves he’s completely healthy and capable of contributing consistently on the defensive end. The other starters have all played well in limited minutes as the coaching staff has been preserving them while giving younger players a chance to earn extended run.
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