Friday, December 02, 2005

Cheers Or Jeers? Larry Brown Comes Back To The Palace

To boo or not to boo --
that is the question

I'm usually not one to care what kind of response players or coaches receive from the fans when they're in town. Typically, whatever happens only lasts for a few seconds anyway, and it's forgotten by the time the game starts.

But when Larry Brown is introduced this evening at the Palace as the head coach of the New York Knicks, I am indeed very curious as to how the Pistons faithful will respond.

On the one hand, LB wore out his welcome, I believe, which says a lot more about him than the Detroit fans, considering he won a championship and came minutes away from winning another. Normally when you do that, the folks here lengthen the red carpet and anoint you. The fact that Brown could accomplish nearly back-to-back titles and still be told "good riddance" is an indictment of the antics he pulled. So that's the case for a cascade of boos to rain down on him tonight.

The other side says, hey, the guy DID bring us to the promised land, so cut him some slack. After all, we all knew what we were getting when the Pistons hired Brown in 2003. So there's the case for a mostly warm reception.

My gut tells me there will be more cheers than boos -- at the Palace. However, something else also tells me that there are people who will actually boo Brown from their living room sofa. But maybe the amount of boos at the Palace will be dependent upon the amount of booze the denizens have consumed.

The reaction, though, is sure to be mixed because while Detroiters love a winner as much as the next city's fans, they also appreciate loyalty and commitment. We're a rather insecure bunch here, and when we get the feeling that someone doesn't really want to be here, we don't like that, and aren't shy to let them know. Pudge Rodriguez, for example, is hemorrhaging supporters because he doesn't give them that warm and fuzzy feeling.

Even before Brown's name is blared by Mason over the P.A. system, the reaction is sure to start. It will start, frankly, the moment Brown steps onto the court. It will continue to simmer and cause a murmur until the formal introductions are made. Then, and only then, will we find out what the "official" reaction will be.

By the way, they ARE playing a game tonight, too, aren't they?


the sports dude said...

If I was there I would give the man a standing ovation... then cheer as loud as I could to make sure the Pistons kick the crap out of his Knicks.

Look, no doubt, there would have been no Championship without LB and anyone who says otherwise is kidding themselves. He took the team that Rick Carlisle started and took it that next step. Trust me, even with Rasheed, if there would have been any other coach there it would not have happened.

Look, Joe D. used LB to get a title and likewise LB used the Pistons to get his. The only thing was no one expected it to happen in year #1 of the plan. Both sides got what they wanted and then got the hell away from each other quicker than you could say "gypsy".


Sports Litter said...

We all know how the fans in Detroit are (ya I'm talking about the riot last year against the Pacers), but how can they boo a guy who brought they a championship and some of the best years of detroit basketball ever.

the sports dude said...

Hey now sports litter, I hope you are not saying the brawl was the fault of the fans? It would have ended with the beer cup hitting Artest if it was anyone but Artest. If it hit any other player in the league there is no way that would have happened. I don't want to get into the brawl thing again but I will say this, there is only one guy at fault for all of that and his name is Ron Artest. He should have been banned for life from the NBA, quite frankly I think Stern was too soft on him.

So please do not insult all of us "Detroit" fans up here when quite frankly it was not the people of Detroit that was at fault but rather a member of the Pacers.


Ian C. said...

Sports Litter, here's why Brown will receive some boos tonight: Detroit fans value loyalty. If you don't like it here, then leave. Go ahead - walk away from possibly the best team you ever had. Our team will win with someone else.

Sports Dude, I'm inclined to agree with you about LB's value to the championship team. Yet I don't think he's James Naismith either.

If Flip Saunders wins with the Pistons this year, I think some of the luster chips off Brown, even if he was the one who originally taught this team how to win.

dolphinfan said...

Brown brought a championship to Detroit and should be appreciated for it. He is also in a rebuilding situation in NY and I bet he appreciates Detroit as well.