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The Big Question: Ben Gordon

With a cloud uncertainty thunder-storming, snowing and hailing on the Detroit Pistons, we wanted our Pistons preview series to capture that. So for each Piston, Patrick Hayes and I will identify and explain what we each see as the biggest question surrounding him entering the season.

DF: Can he eclipse the Diawara Line in 79 percent of his games?

This coincides with a lengthier post I had planned for last year and can’t be fully explained in this spirit of this series. So, check shortly for a full post explaining the Diawara Line.

PH: Is he a starter?

Ben Gordon is not going to win the starting shooting guard job with Richard Hamilton present. Gordon’s explosiveness is just much better suited as a super-sub type player. But Gordon does not view himself as a sixth man, nor does his salary suggest he is one.

The Pistons need to find out if they have a young veteran who will develop a more all-around approach if he’s given an expanded role, or if they have a one-dimensional scorer who’s locked into an above-market-rate long-term deal.

5 Comments

  • Oct 25, 20109:50 pm
    by Laser

    Reply

    for many reasons i think both of these questions are meaningless. he can be a very valuable player and could earn his contract (or come very close) on a different team.
     
    the real Big Question as far as i’m concerned is, “will joe pull the trigger already and unload him so we can be good again?” face it: the team isn’t going to have a chance at success with a backcourt core of stuckey, rip and gordon. so we can either wait out rip’s contract and have a chance to be good in gordon’s last year after we’ve blown more than $40 million to have him as a sub-20 minute backup. or we could trade him, take a richly-deserved loss for having handed him that contract, and move on. rip is decidedly more unmovable. charlie’s probably entirely unmovable. ben gordon is the one bad contract we can probably unload.
     
    as much crap as i’ve given joe for being the league’s worst GM for the past two years running, i gave him credit for NOT handing out the worst free agent contract last summer. that honor went to toronro, but even they were able to unload turkoglu. so i think gordon is movable. joe needs to accept that he’s done a terrible job and needs to scrap whatever half-cocked “plans” he had for this squad. moving gordon has got to be the first step. just my 2 cents.

  • Oct 26, 201012:37 pm
    by Patrick Hayes

    Reply

    The idea of the series is to ask questions that have a reasonable chance of happening. To me, “will joe pull the trigger already and unload him so we can be good again?” is not a question that has a reasonable chance of happening. I don’t think there’s any way, barring some sort of ridiculously good trade offer from another team, that they would unload Gordon, and they certainly wouldn’t do it in a salary dump the way Toronto did with Turkoglu.

  • Oct 26, 20102:52 pm
    by Rodman4Life

    Reply

    I have to agree with Laser on this one.  I like Gordon, but not on this squad.  Maybe we could shuffle him for a bad-contract big, or a player that fits our roster better.  Some team out there may have an interest because of his scoring and his age.

  • Oct 26, 20104:00 pm
    by Patrick Hayes

    Reply

    @Rodman4Life:

    Who qualifies as a bad contract big that is actually good right now? I can’t see any big men getting moved. I don’t like Haywood’s deal in Dallas, but he just signed it, so they aren’t going to trade him yet. Same thing with Gooden in Milwaukee. And I can’t say that I’d rather be locked into those guys longterm any more than I’d want to be locked into Gordon. Gortat has a big (but not bad) contract, but he’s also very useful to Orlando, particularly if they make the Finals and play a team with a huge front line like LA.

    There’s a huge big man shortage in the league. Contending teams are stockpiling them. No one is going to trade a serviceable big for Ben Gordon.

  • Oct 27, 20102:53 am
    by Laser

    Reply

    hayes, i don’t think joe WILL trade gordon. just like i don’t think he’ll trade stuckey. but i think it could be done, and that’s more than i can say for rip. whatever vague notions joe ever had about a stuckey-gordon backcourt combination were shot in the face BEFORE gordon was even signed. what joe’s probably going to do is keep all three and ensure that this team is terrible until rip has an expiring (read: movable) contract. so at least half of ben gordon’s $58 million contract will be utterly wasted, and we’ll lose twice as many games as we win for the next two seasons straight. then joe will finally get to see if his dream backcourt can succeed.
     
    i think he’s WAY too stubborn to trade gordon and admit his mistake. he’s turned the second best team in the league (and a highly flexible one, at that) into the second worst (with virtually no flexibility) in all of two seasons. and he won’t admit a shred of blame. it was injuries, bad luck, you name it. not bad decisions. if joe was smart he’d cut his losses, but he’s not, so he won’t.

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