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Ben Gordon has Detroit journos feeling optimisitic

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ben-gordon-bulls-pistons.JPGWith the acquisition of former Bulls guard Ben Gordon and his UConn teammate Charlie Villanueva, there's a bit of optimism growing in Pistonville.

At least one Detroit journalist thinks Gordon is among the pieces needed for the franchise to return to championship form. Free Press columnist Michael Rosenberg writes: "Their arrivals put the Pistons back in the upper echelon of the Eastern Conference, and they allow Dumars to keep maneuvering until he has all the right pieces. Remember, he didn't add the final starter on the 2004 champs, Rasheed Wallace, until February of that season."

Detroit News journalist Chris McCosky praised Gordon as well: "But in Gordon, 26, they have a bona fide scorer, one who can get his shot off anytime, anywhere and one completely unafraid to take big shots in big spots. He silenced all critics with his performance in the playoffs last season (24 ppg)."

If anything, Gordon's performance in the playoffs exposed his greatest weakness and showed him to be -- as another former Chicago athlete was described -- a mental midget.
To be sure, there's the Ben Gordon who's a solid player and a prolific scorer who can literally take over a game. Then there's the Ben Gordon of Game 7 in the Eastern Conference playoffs. His performance tipified his Bulls career. Sure, he scored 33 points, but at what cost on the defensive end, watching Eddie House (Eddie House!) rain threes like Jordan in the Train Blazers game? And then there was quintessential Ben. With 30 seconds left in the second quarter of Game 7 with the Bulls down by 6, Gordon stole an inbounds pass, took the ball the length of the court and pulled up for a wide-open three that clanked off the rim. It took the wind out of the Bulls' comeback efforts and took them into the locker room on a sour note, and the team never recovered.

Gordon's hits -- which promise to be plenty -- will keep the Pistons in contention, but his misses -- which promise to come at critical junctures -- will be their demise.

Still, Rosenberg sums up his thoughts about Gordon with a simple phrase: "Pistons fans will love him."

Of course they will. But, like a mischievous two year old, they'll need to learn to love him despite the Gordonian petulance that will keep them from being a great team.

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If you've watched the Bull for the last 3 to 4 years, you'd know that the loss of B. Gordon is not a big deal. Don't let a few playoff games fool you.

Ideally the Bull would have freed up some extra cash to re-sign B. Gordon by trading K. Hienrich or simply not overpaying L. Deng a season ago.

Prior to the '07 season the Bull gave B. Gordon a fair offer (and similar to what he signed with Detroit) and he turned it down.

He's a streaky shooter, garbage ball handler and an even worse defender.

Scorers in the NBA are a dime a dozen... B. Gordon will not be missed.

This Bull team should be focused on the growth of D. Rose.

Linda S.

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This page contains a single entry by Kevin Allen published on July 2, 2009 9:01 AM.

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