Dumars sold his soul to the crossroads demon, dumping Carlisle (who would later go on to win a title with Dallas) for Larry Brown. This culminated in 2 trips to the Finals, and one NBA championship. The franchise then parted ways with Brown after the relationship became contentious before the first Finals appearance, and become completely toxic by the end of the second. Flip Saunders was brought in, a stepford coach who did nothing to improve the team, and basically holding the line at the Eastern Conference Finals 3 years in a row. The team had hit its ceiling. Brown, despite his personality defects, eccentricities, was and is a very respected man in the NBA coaching ranks, a group that is very much a fraternity, where guys have more loyalty to the coaching brotherhood than to their specific employers. Since Saunders has left, the Pistons have been through numerous coaches, some of them outright disasters, others bad fits. With poor personnel and cap management, the franchise is truly a bottom dweller. Already having trouble attracting any kind of talent over more powerful markets like NY, LA and Chicago, Detroit basketball hasn't been in this state since the early 1980s. I am not a big fan of the supernatural, but perhaps it was a very arrogant and unwise decision to part ways with Carlisle and Brown as the Pistons did. Maybe this is karma, maybe it is coincidence, but it looks a lot more like bad breakups with successful coaches hurts the franchise for much longer than it hurts that coach because his brothers in the NBA will make sure he lands softly, quickly. Food for thought.