Central Notes: Datome, Blatt, Noah

The Pistons sent Gigi Datome to their D-League affiliate on Wednesday, an assignment the player wasn’t happy about, David Mayo of MLive writes. “You know what? Not really,” Detroit’s president of basketball operations Stan Van Gundy said when asked if Datome was excited about the move. “There’s sort of a … he’s leaving the NBA, he’s a little older, he’s not a 21-year-old guy. So no, not really. But hopefully, when he gets down there to California, and gets practicing, and gets ready to play, and is getting ready for a game that he knows he’s going to get a chance to play in, hopefully he will get enthused about it.” Datome is reportedly on the trading block.

Here’s the latest from the Central Division:

  • Van Gundy was honest when he said that he had a few second thoughts about his decision to accept the job in Detroit when the Pistons began the season with a 5-23 record, Ethan Skolnick of Bleacher Report writes. “What I started doubting, quite honestly, at 5-23, was myself,” Van Gundy said. “After being out two years and being 5-23, I’d be lying if I tell you I wasn’t doubting myself as a coach. There’s no question, as a coach. I’ve never doubted our organization and what we’re doing and the ability we have down the road. Even at 5-23, I had confidence in everybody else in the organization but myself. Yes. That’s where it suffered.”
  • Bulls center Joakim Noah is still trying to regain his form after undergoing offseason knee surgery, a process that hasn’t gone as quickly or smoothly as the player had hoped, Doug Padilla of ESPNChicago.com writes.
  • David Blatt was hired by the Cavs with the reputation and track record of being a great coach, but he hasn’t quite lived up to that pedigree since taking over in Cleveland, Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today writes. The large amount of roster turnover and the injuries the team has dealt with explain some of the team’s difficulties, notes Zillgitt. But other contributing factors to the Cavs’ struggles this season are that Blatt is an unknown around the league, his players haven’t quite bought into his system, and they may not trust enough in him yet, Zillgitt adds.

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