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The Big Question: Tayshaun Prince

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: Will Joe Dumars make the right call with Tayshaun Prince?

Let’s see, a championship-team starter on the wrong side of 30 whose best days appear to be behind him, but still capable of playing at a high level. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before.

That was Chauncey Billups’ situation when the Pistons traded him to the Nuggets. At the time, there were compelling reasons to keep him and compelling reasons to trade him. Joe Dumars chose the latter, and it ended up being the wrong choice.

Dumars faces a similar predicament with Tayshaun Prince, but Prince’s expiring contraction only complicates the decision.

Frankly, I don’t know whether the Pistons should trade Prince or keep him past the trade deadline, and if they keep him, I don’t know what they should do with him. Does Dumars?

PH: Will Prince’s value to the team trump his value as an expiring contract?

Few players in basketball are as smart on the court as Tayshaun Prince. He’s exactly the type of veteran a rebuilding team would want to teach its young impressionable future cornerstones. The problem is his large expiring contract makes him the team’s most valuable asset if it wants more young impressionable future cornerstones.

Most assume that the Pistons will try to trade Prince to improve. I still have my doubts.

2 Comments

  • Oct 27, 20105:45 pm
    by Laser

    Reply

    feldman: are you seriously advocating, with that last line, that the team let him walk for nothing?? don’t get me wrong, whatever the worst thing we could do with prince, i’m guessing that’s what joe does. but you actually think letting him walk qualifies as the “right” thing to do??
     
    i get that you and i do NOT see eye-to-eye on this team right now, so i can see why you think holding onto him for the duration of the season is a possibility. personally, i don’t think it will be very long before our postseason hopes evaporate, so i doubt we end up holding onto him for the sake of a playoff push. but no matter how you slice it, you just can’t advocate letting your best player walk for nothing. it’s not like that would even give us cap space! we’d have to move an additional contract to have more than the MLE to spend this summer, and as you must know, none of our other major contracts are going anywhere.
     
    hayes: this probably comes down to where the team is in the standings come february. if the pistons can even dream of the playoffs at that point, smart money says joe does the dumb thing and keeps him. the result will invariably be a swift first round exit or falling short of the playoffs entirely. then we’re left to let him walk or give him an extension we can’t afford, even though we presumably drafted three small forwards a year ago for a reason (other than to have them be our power forwards of the future). now’s the time to trade that guy. we must at least agree on that much, right?

  • Oct 28, 201012:27 am
    by Patrick Hayes

    Reply

    @Laser:
    Making the playoffs certainly doesn’t help the team’s future. But getting at least two home playoff games (or maybe three if they can manage to avoid a sweep) isn’t something that should be scoffed at. The organization needs and wants money right now with attendance going down the last two seasons. They’d take a first round sweep in a second, even at the expense of a lottery pick.

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