Traverse City Record-Eagle

Sports

September 12, 2008

New Pistons coach will be in TC Wednesday

Curry to stress D, transition

TRAVERSE CITY -- Michael Curry's attention is focused on football today.

The Detroit Pistons rookie head coach is in East Lansing to watch Michigan State play Florida Atlantic. His son, Deon, is a receiver for the Spartans.

But his focus will shift back to basketball soon after as he leads a Pistons contingent on a mid-week six-city tip-off tour. The tour -- which will include players Rodney Stuckey and Aaron Afflalo and broadcasters George Blaha and Greg Kelser -- will stop in Traverse City on Wednesday afternoon. A rally is planned downtown between 3-6 p.m. near the Front and Union intersection.

Curry, a former Pistons player, joined coach Flip Saunders staff last season. He was promoted to the top job when Saunders was fired after the Pistons lost to Boston in the Eastern Conference finals.

He talked about the transition, and his goals, in an interview with the Record-Eagle.

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How has the transition from assistant to head coach gone?

It's gone well. I was able to put together a great coaching staff. I was able to get guys from different teams that I think can add to our staff -- defensively and offensively. I also thought we had a productive summer with our young guys. For most of the summer, we had six to nine players on a daily basis working out at the practice facility. Making that commitment, learning what we want to do as a team, and improving their skill level, will put them ahead of the curve.

What kind of a coach will you be? What will be your style?

I want us to be a really good defensive team, a team able to apply pressure. I want to be good in all aspects, whether it's half-court defense, applying pressure full court or trapping. When you look at teams that are successful, and win championships, they are versatile on defense.

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