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Player-by-player thoughts from Pistons’ loss to Kings in Summer League

Patrick Hayes broke down the matchups against the Kings yesterday, which I thought made a lot of sense given Sacramento’s Summer League roster. Like Patrick, I didn’t see much from any non-Pistons draft pick, and Jonas Jerebko sat out. Here’s my independent view of Detroit’s four major players who played against the Kings:

Austin Daye

  • Austin Daye’s sore hip and hamstring hurt his speed, he told Ted Kulfan of The Detroit News. Well, I’ll give Daye a pass for being slower, but that didn’t look like too much of his problem.
  • Daye was frustrated by the Kings’ physical defense, and he let it take over his game. He shot two airballs. He forced shots. He committed a bunch of sloppy fouls. And his body langue looked terrible.
  • Sebastian Pruiti of NBA Playbook noticed Daye did a much better job of turning and facing amid contact in his first two Summer League games than he did last year. Against the Kings, that wasn’t the case.
  • Playing physical doesn’t come naturally to Daye. At times, when defending on the wing, he tried to be physical. But he was so obvious about it, he was called for a foul.
  • Daye is still too weak to provide help defense inside.
  • He had a nice crossover to beat his man and draw a foul. A good dribbler, Daye could probably do that more often.
  • Ryan Thompson dribbled right past Daye to start second half.

Greg Monroe

  • Greg Monroe was tired in the fourth quarter again.
  • He had a strong roll on a pick and roll for a basket and went up strong on a putback. Those are two reasons I don’t overly question Monroe’s motor. I just question his endurance.
  • He set another blatant illegal screen. His illegal screen against the Lakers was so ridiculous, I chalked it up to nerves, slipping or something like that. Now, Monroe’s inability to set a good pick has become a real concern.
  • He runs the break better than I thought he could, especially without the ball. But he’s a little out of control when he has the ball and is leading the break.
  • Monroe had some trouble dribbling with his back to the basket.
  • DeMarcus Cousins abused him in the post. And Monroe didn’t use his strength advantage over Hassan Whiteside inside either. Monroe won’t have the strength advantage over a lot of big men yet, but I think his frame will allow him to gain a lot of strength. I’m troubled he doesn’t have the technique to take advantage of the situations where he’s already stronger.
  • He showed nice awareness, jumping in front of and stealing an entry pass to Cousins. That came a possession after Monroe was called for offensive foul, and he looked geared up. I’d like to see him that interested in every defensive possession.

Terrico White

  • Terrico White’s offensive moves look excellent when he’s looking for his shot. In particular, there was one play where he brought the ball up, the defender sagged too far, and White drained a beautiful-looking 19-foot jumper. But he was thinking shot the moment he crossed half-court.
  • The question becomes, can he score when not looking for his own shot? I don’t think he’s a good enough scorer to play shooting guard in this league regularly, and if he’s playing point guard, he can’t think shot first at all times.
  • Let’s stop the Rodney Stuckey comparisons. Both are athletic combo guards, but they play very differently. Stuckey attacks the rim much better than White, and White has a better jumper.
  • White showed good point-guard skills on the fastbreak.
  • White showed poor point-guard skills in the half-court, particularly entry passes.
  • He extended his off arm on a drive and was called for an offensive foul. He looked uncomfortable in that situation, and you can see why he didn’t get to the free-throw line more at Mississippi.
  • White showed his supreme jumping ability on a pair of alley-oop attempts. One, he caught almost as high as I’ve ever seen a guard go up and dunked. The other, the fumbled in the air.

DaJuan Summers

  • DaJuan Summers’ jumper continues to look good.
  • He does a nice job of using his body to bump guys off and create room to shoot.
  • He’s also a bit of a ball hog. I’m not sure he’s good at anything besides scoring.
  • Although to be fair, I’m not sure he’s really bad at anything.
  • On the other hand, he lit up the Summer League last year, too. I think Rob Mahoney’s thoughts on Donté Greene might apply to Summers:

"It’s entirely possible that Donté Greene was put on this planet purely to thrive in Summer League games. His ball-handling skills and decision-making aren’t exposed against the inferior competition, and he essentially has license to fire at will. As a result, Greene reveals the flashes that made him such an intriguing prospect coming out of Syracuse. Yet that’s part of the problem. Greene is so athletic and so talented for a 6-foot-11 player, but he’s more or less the same talent he was a year ago or the year before that. Donté manages to catch lightning in a bottle in Vegas, but in the big leagues? He still has a fair way to go."


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  • Jul 14, 20103:45 am
    by Kaneda


    This is completely off topic since i live in Athens, Greece and haven’t had the opportunity to watch our summer league games…
    Did Dumars even attempt to acquire Al Jefferson? It seems that there is a tremendous amount of apathy surrounding the team in it’s search to get stronger. It is going to be a disaster of a season if we don’t bring any big in… Ben, CV, Monroe, JJ and Wilcox… disaster waiting to happen.

  • Jul 14, 20107:45 am
    by gmehl1977


    Kaneda i am getting just as frustrated as you with the lack of activity the pistons have had at the moment. I was hoping once the big FA found homes we would of been active in evening out our roster.
    I see New Orleans GM just got canned. I am guessing the rumors of Joe going there to be there GM will be starting soon. Maybe we can try and trade for Chris Paul now with all the issues they have going on over there at the moment.
    Has anyone heard anything? I did read that we were after Tyson Chandler but that’s about it!

  • Jul 14, 201010:18 am
    by nuetes


    its definitely frustrating because dumars kept saying how he was going to be very active this summer and has done literally nothing. basically all we have to show for the offseason is monroe instead of kwame. i just don’t think the pistons have anybody that anyone else wants. or they might, but there are better options out there for other teams than what the pistons have to offer. its possible dumars is just as frustrated as the fans are, or at least i hope so. i hope he tried, because thats about all you can ask for. the thing is if the pistons are offering rip and prince the only interested partners would be potential contenders. no rebuilding team is going to want veterans like that. like the wolves, why would they want either of those guys? the bobcats have jackson and g.wallace they wouldn’t want them either.

    • Jul 14, 201010:55 am
      by gmehl1977


      Joe is definitely not sitting on his hands but i feel that his next move has to be a good one otherwise it could be make or break for him and he is probably feeling the pressure on this. I would love for us to be able to get our hands on either Gortat or Brandon Bass from the magic. Both of those guys are really wasting away on Orlando’s bench.

  • Jul 14, 20105:25 pm
    by The Rake


    Thanks for the thoughts on Game 3.  I do fear the Pistons are not going to be competitive anytime soon with Miami really seeming to secure some names at bargain rates. With Boston, Orl, and Miami, and Chicago expected to be strong for years (maybe not Bos when Big 3 fall off but still) Detroit has an absolute ceiling of lower half of playoffs in conference. Not too encouraging. I honestly expected JD to try to unload Rip by now. I love Rip, but I think its time to move on since we are a jumbled mess with no real identity. Coaching is a concern too. This is a real make or break year for the future of this team/franchise in a lot of ways.

  • Jul 16, 201011:30 am
    by Hardy


    I too believe that Monroe put a lot  of pressure on hisself to try to out perform Cousins. If people really look at him he can be another Olajuwan/Gasol type player.  His highlights reel is going to be impressive later on.  He is going to go against Wallace,Maxiell,Jerebko, and possibly Wilcox/Brown. His game is going to get better and I do believe if it one day does happen (playoff/championship) Monroe’s finess will beat out Cousins (Olajuwan vs. Shaq /Houston vs. Orlando 95?).

  • Jul 21, 20103:02 am
    by Dan Feldman


    Kaneda, there was a rumor Dumars was offered Jefferson for Tayshaun Prince and No. 7. If true, I think he was right to decline.

  • Jul 21, 20103:04 am
    by Dan Feldman


    The Rake, I think your comment illustrates why Dumars traded Billups (and I’m only referring to the decision to do it, not the execution of it and subsequent signings). Teams like Cleveland (now Miami) and Orlando had passed the Pistons, and that roster wasn’t going to catch them.

  • Jul 21, 20103:06 am
    by Dan Feldman


    Hardy, I love the optimism, but don’t get carried away. Monroe is a far, far, far, far cry from nearing Olajuwon. And if I recall, Hakeem was pretty strong himself.

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