One unique aspect of Maurice Cheeks taking over as coach of the Detroit Pistons is that he brings more qualifications to the coaching sidelines, thanks to extensive experience as a key player.
Cheeks played the game and played it very well. The Pistons have had coaches with no head coaching experience and some with a lot of it, but it doesn’t seem to matter. Cheeks has coaching experience. But he’s coming to Detroit at the right time since the Pistons could be on the verge of finally emerging as a contender for the NBA playoffs.
This is the first time in awhile a former standout coach is leading the Pistons. The hope is that Cheeks will rub off on the players who make up the key nucleus of the team: Brandon Knight, Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond. Previous coaches have not drawn the respect from the players like Cheeks probably will. After all, he’s a former player, so he’s obviously going to share his valuable insights with the players. What Cheeks says will be valuable information and it’s a good idea to listen to every word.
Cheeks has had success as a coach, having around a .500 record. His teams did not necessarily turn the world on fire. Nor did they hit rock bottom.
But within a year or two, he may have the most talented team he’s ever enjoyed if the Pistons’ young players continue to mature and improve. If the Pistons can keep adding some blue chip talent, Cheeks could have a fun stint in Detroit.