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Rodney Stuckey’s age, upside could make the market for him more competitive than thought

Rodney Stuckey has unquestionably had an up and down career in Detroit. He’s yet to fully prove he can be a full-time point guard and this season, he had a few high profile clashes with his coach. All that aside, though, he’s still an incredibly physically gifted player, and restricted free agents with his tools often receive interest based more on their upside than what they’ve accomplished on the court.

Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld says Stuckey is the best free agent point guard available:

Rodney Stuckey is the best point guard available and at 25 years old, he still has some upside. However, he’s a restricted free agent and recent reports have indicated that the Detroit Pistons will re-sign him.

If the Pistons can entice Stuckey into signing a team-friendly deal, or if he signs an offer sheet elsewhere that isn’t exorbitant, it makes sense to sign him long-term. I still think the best option for Stuckey is to sign the qualifying offer, put everything he has into next season hoping for a career year and then hit unrestricted free agency. Surely the Pistons are worried about that scenario as well, which is probably why they will press to sign him long-term now.

26 Comments

  • May 4, 20111:24 pm
    by Laser

    Reply

    the big, sweeping problem with the team right now is that basically all the decisions to make are between two bad options. in terms of significant choices going forward, there’s nothing even close to an “easy” decision to be made. it’s a combination of previous bad decisions and bad timing.
     
    thing is, i don’t see how you don’t extend this guy. sure you might be throwing good money after bad, but this team is virtually devoid of assets, and even on a pretty rich contract he still qualifies as an asset. they’ll probably end up paying him around $50 million for five years or something, and it will be the right decision, but only because they were too stupid to trade him when he was worth more. we’re left with several undesirable decisions like this.
     
    perhaps you missed it, but i’ve even flip-flopped on tayshaun. now i think re-signing him would be the better of two poor options (if we could pull it off… a very big “if”). i fail to see how we’re going to get a decent return for him in a sign-and-trade, and he’s one of the last pistons i’d want to part with right now. honestly i’d rather trade austin daye, if that was the decision. dude just had a career year, emerged as a go-to scorer, and is still in his prime. i can’t see how this team is going to fill his void, and it’s hard to envision us being better next year than we were this year without him. his versatility, durability and character make him an unlikely candidate to become an albatross.
     
    it’s all sort of like that trade where we almost sent rip to cleveland with a future first rounder. executing that trade would have been the worse of the two options, but there’s no winning. can we dump ben gordon for another shabby contract? can we improve the team slightly by trading daye or jerebko? i dunno. no good options here. just despair.

    • May 4, 20112:10 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Prince had a good season, but I reject the notion that he became a go-to scorer. If Prince is your go-to scorer, your team is always going to suck. I agree that he will always have trade value, but I’d personally rather not make the salary commitment and hope that either Daye or Jerebko or even whoever they take in the lottery mans that position next season. The short-term production will probably be less for sure, but who is really in a rush to get swept in the first round anyway? That’s about the absolute height of what any Prince-led team could accomplish.

    • May 4, 20113:21 pm
      by Tim

      Reply

      If Stuckey is on a $10M/yr deal, he will NOT be an asset–unless of course Langlois’ prediction of his stepping up to a 22/8 on 45% shooting player happens. I want Stuckey to be resigned because he still has big potential, but not for that much. I also disagree on Prince. He is a nice player and all. But there is no reason to believe he will be a lot better than a number of other wings on this team. And unless he is, the Pistons will improve just by removing a player from the lineup who eats lots of minutes (they didn’t have nearly enough to go around with Jerebko out all year). Also, his absence will probably improve the trade value of a lot of other players. But I agree about trading Daye and Jerebko. Get something for them before their prices go up.

  • May 4, 20112:12 pm
    by Marvin Jones

    Reply

    It seems that everything with you is “just despair”, maybe you’re just a glass half empty kind of guy. Me, I see things differently, I think Daye, JJ, Monroe and Stuckey form a very good nucleus going forward. The only real difference between Rose, Westbrook and Stuckey is those two are more athletic than Stuckey, hence they finish better at the rim and they’re able to make better plays off of their mistakes than Stuckey can. None of them are great shooters, or  pass first point guards. Stuckeys’s size, speed and quicknes gives the Pistons an advantage at the point guard position on most nights and against the elite point guards, he at least can hold his own. No way should they have “traded him while he was worth more”, and to replace him with who. Just how may point guards that are actually obtainable are better than Stuckey, not many, if any. I think we’re heading in the right direction with those 4 players, get a good coach with a good system and keep adding quality players and the Pistons will be back in the playoff picture in no time.  

    • May 4, 20112:40 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Although I agree that Stuckey’s physical tools put him in a class with Rose and Westbrook, he hasn’t been close to having the impact either of those guys have had yet. It doesn’t mean I don’t think he can, but he needs to have a good offseason and come back next season ready to play with consistency for a full season, something he has yet to do in his career. Rose, incidentally, has developed a decent outside shot, part of the reason he’s the MVP this season. He also committed fully at the defensive end. Stuckey has yet to do either of those things, and he’s been in the league longer than Rose.

      I hope he gets it, and I agree that the Pistons can’t afford to let him leave for the main reason you mentioned, that no one better or affordable is available. But Stuckey is running out of time before the talk about his “upside” turns into talk about his wasted talents.

      • May 4, 20114:19 pm
        by Marvin Jones

        Reply

        Taking into account that he’s had three coaches in his four years and argueably bad coaches at that, it’s no wonder he hasn’t “fully committed” to anything.  He ‘s always been learning a new system or a new scheme. Stuckey can be a very good defensive guard, give him a good coach that can get him to buy into his system and give him some stability and I think you will see Stuckey start to reach his potential. Stuckey has also developed a decent outside shot and with his feet set is a decent 3pt shooter. He has grown in some areas and I think that growth will continue.

      • May 4, 20117:01 pm
        by 2Tough

        Reply

        Stuckey’s a better defender than Rose.  Don’t be fooled into thinking Rose is some great defensive player just because Thibs gets his teams to play elite level defense.

    • May 4, 20116:59 pm
      by 2Tough

      Reply

      Actually, Westbrook, despite some highlight reel finishes, was not a better finisher than Stuckey this year.  I believe he shot about 50% at the rims this year (which is about 6 percent lower than what Stuck shot), so he misses more than his fair share of bunnies at the cup too.

  • May 4, 20112:38 pm
    by RandomGuy313

    Reply

    @Marvin I would be hesitant to lump JJ and Daye in that nucleus. I believe they are bit players that can provide you some energy, but not on a consistent basis. I see them as rotational players.
    I think Stuck will go into this season without signing long term and I hope that contract year drives him to a monster season so we can include some bad contracts with a deal.

    • May 4, 20113:26 pm
      by Tim

      Reply

      Agreed. I like Daye and Jerebko as solid bench players. But I hate all the focus on them as a nucleus. Any team with those players as its nucleus has a very low ceiling. It would be like having a nucleus of Wes Johnson and Darko Milicic.
      Daye and Jerebko are assets. They have value either on this team or as trade bait. But for them to have a chance at rounding out a contending starting 5, the other three would have to be perennial all-stars/future HOFs.

      • May 4, 20114:35 pm
        by Marvin Jones

        Reply

        I think JJ and Daye will be more than “bit players” in this league. I can see JJ becoming someone like Haslem, a solid defender, good rebounder and an opportunistic offensive player with putbacks and open jumpers off penetration. Daye I think will be a solid 3, not great but solid. I don’t think Q took advantage of his talents, he should have the ball in his hands more to take guys off the dribble and create for others. He’s a very heady player. I’m not saying if a better option comes along don’t take it but any teams rotation consists of 9 or 10 players and I think both of those guys are good rotation players on a contending team.

        • May 4, 20114:50 pm
          by RandomGuy313

          Reply

          I have no problem retracting the word “bit”; however I do not believe they belong in the nucleus you included in the reply. They would be more rotational.

          • May 4, 20116:40 pm
            by Marvin Jones

            You can only play with the hand you’re dealt, as of right now with this roster, Stuckey, JJ, Daye and Monroe should be looked at as core players going forward, if a trade comes along that makes you better or a draft pick is a better player then that can change but I would not be in such a hurry to discard any of those players.

          • May 4, 20117:12 pm
            by RandomGuy313

            @Marvin I understand those are the players we are dealt with including BG and CV. However, my point is going forward we cannot be successful if those are the marquee players because I feel that it is asking too much of them. They are better served contributing not being relied on.

          • May 5, 201110:33 am
            by Tim Thielke

            Core players are not the best youngest players you have. They are the players you build around. Typically, the players you assume you won’t get new guys who are better than them. For Jerebko and Daye, that would be a very sad assumption.

  • May 4, 20113:08 pm
    by RandomGuy313

    Reply

    I am about down with isolation plays for players that don’t have an decent handle (i.e. Prince and Hamilton).
     

    • May 4, 20113:26 pm
      by RandomGuy313

      Reply

      eek…bad english. “down” is done and “an” is a. My apologies

  • May 4, 20116:55 pm
    by detroitpcb

    Reply

    the Pistons should definitely sign Stuckey to a reasonable long term deal.

    the kid plays hard, absorbs punishment, continues to be one of the best guards in the league at getting to the line. He plays decent defense, is willing to take on the challenge of guarding bigger players, and would improve a whole lot if the Pistons had a shot -blocker behind him. His outside shot has improved and so has his three point shooting, though there is certainly room for more development and consistency in both areas. He does not turn the ball over – unlike Ben Gordon – and he can pass the ball and find open teammates though his decision making and court awareness need improvement. He showed he could handle either the point or the two guard spot. He would greatly benefit from playing in a uptempo offense. His lack of respect for Q is a minor concern but not a major one because it was obvious this season that none of the vets on this team respected Q, and for reasons that i find legitimate. After playing for Curry and Q, you do have to wonder a little if Stuckey will respect the new coach – but generally in the NBA coaches that merit respect get it and those that are incompetent or those that wear to heavily on their players lose it.

    There is no way i would bring Prince back to this team, though i respect his contributions and his game. As Patrick notes, if Tay is your go to player, you are not going to win a lot of games. He is a possible second option but really a perfect third option for a team and i hope he gets to finish his career with a contender.

    The contract we should really strive to get rid of is Ben Gordon’s. And it would be fine with me if they managed to trade Rip as well. I could see a lineup of Bynum, Stuckey, Daye, Monroe and JJ with CV and a rookie or sign & trade big coming off the bench. I would also probably try to resign Wilcox to a cheap deal. Assuming they do not get lucky and get the top spot were they could draft Irving, they need to find a backup combo guard who can play the point. Resigning T-Mac would be a mistke since that insures that you play walk it up basketball (though T-Mac does throw some good outlet halfcourt type passes to fuel the break, he is not going to run at this stage of his career. I’d rather see Burks in the first round at #7 or #8 than a reach for a big if all of the good ones are already off the board. But who knows, maybe somebody falls to us again this year. The Lions just got the best player in the draft at #13.

    The Pistons are still a coach, a developmental year, and a few roster tweaks away. Patience. 

    • May 4, 20117:20 pm
      by RandomGuy313

      Reply

      If our starting five is  Bynum, Stuckey, Daye, Monroe and JJ; I would cry..

  • May 4, 20117:42 pm
    by RandomGuy313

    Reply

    If we get a PG in the lottery (hopefully Knight)

    I see bynum backing him up with Stuckey moving to the two (and taking minutes from Bynum at the point).
    Buyout Hamilton as his future is not here, it is time to move on. No one in their right mind would trade for him and I don’t know his motivation since he did not want to join the bulls this past season.
    Have BG come of the bench. Again who would want to trade for him after two subpar years. We can only hope the subtraction of Hamilton will work in his favor.
    Let Prince go. For lack of a better option start Daye and rotate in JJ. We definitely need a slasher type that can finish at this spot
    Resign Wilcox (It has to be 2 yrs at less than 5 otherwise no deal). Although we are familiar with contract year Chris, I like how he finishes and has a decent 12 footer. Rotate JJ and CV with Chris moving to the 5 when Greg is out.
    Monroe at center. Big Ben will probably retire and I am done seeing Maxiell, he should be referred to as DNP-CD from now on. Probably would help to get a bargain shot blocker.

    These steps still leave us vulnerable in the middle for shot blocking but we have no avenue at this moment to address it. I am not sold on Biyumbo contributing if he were to get picked (he would most likely elect to stay in Spain).

  • May 4, 20117:45 pm
    by RandomGuy313

    Reply

    that is Chris Wilcox at 5 per year (he currently made 3 mil)

    • May 5, 20118:20 am
      by detroitpcb

      Reply

      at $5 million i let Wilcox walk.

      the Pistons are probably going to get a starter for Prince in the sign and trade but until the collective barginning issues are resolved, we won’t have any idea who that might be. So i thought i would talk about the players i expect to be back. I am 100% sure that Joe D intends to resign Stuckey and JJ – and he should. The five players i listed will probably be on the court together at times, though Bynum, Daye, and/or JJ could all find themselves coming off the bench.

      Patience.

      the most important things are getting off Ben Gordon’s contract, getting off Rip’s contract, and hiring a good coach.

  • May 5, 20118:59 am
    by RandomGuy313

    Reply

    @detroitpcb I think you are correct that the lineup indicated is one that will be deployed if next season occurs (insert Debbie Downer face)…I am not convinced that we will get a sign and trade with Prince. I don’t think that he is that desirable; Prince is going to be a midlevel exception pick up. We may have paid him 10+ but I do not think he would command that in the market. We will have to eat Rip’s contract and live with BG.

  • May 5, 20119:02 am
    by RandomGuy313

    Reply

    If you have Bynum, Daye and JJ coming off the bench or bit starting (with the assumption that there are better players starting), you will have a decent team on your hands.

  • Jun 9, 20113:58 am
    by Drewster

    Reply

    I think Daye should be looked at as a SG.  Remember how much trouble he gave NY when he started there, and he’s not even that good at defense?  I say start a super tall lineup of Stuckey, Daye, Jerebko, Monroe and (insert center here).  Detroit has $12-14 million to spend after Prince leaves.  I’m crossing my fingers for a Marc Gasol signing; one can only hope, right?  We’ll still have decent bench players like Bynum, Gordon, and Villanueva, and whomever we pick up at #8.

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