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Rodney Stuckey and Tayshaun Prince make Sports Illustrated’s best/worst signings list … guess who landed on which list

The Pistons’ signings of Rodney Stuckey and Tayshaun Prince each were honorable mentions in categories in Zack Lowe’s midseason evaluations for Sports Illustrated:

Stuckey was mentioned among the ‘bests:’

Detroit and Philadelphia brought back Rodney Stuckey and Thaddeus Young, respectively, on decent long-term deals.

Prince, not surprisingly based on his career-low shooting percentage, made the ‘worsts,’ although Lowe is not as critical of the deal as other national writers have been:

The Pistons gave Tayshaun Prince a four-year, $28 million contract, a deal I liked at the time and still don’t really hate.

23 Comments

  • Feb 23, 201210:22 am
    by rick77

    Reply

    Garbage article period! In support of what argument is this among the worst? I mean cap space is not the end all be all that everyone talks about.  Price earned that contract in my opinion and trust me it could have been worse, but it was a bargain. If I am not mistaken Ben Wallace or was it Chauncey signed a similiar contract when joining Detroit back in the beginning of their runs. It was a bargain then and it is a bargain now. People need to stop bitching about things like that because it draws away from the real issues at hand. This contract is very accomadating.

    • Feb 23, 201211:58 am
      by tarsier

      Reply

      A bargain then and a bargain now?

      Most Pistons fans, myself included, would love to trade Prince for LA’s trade exception (i.e. for nothing). That is because Prince is playing terribly, putting up his worst stats since his rookie season, and can only reasonably be expected to get worse as his contract goes on (because, you know, he’s getting older). Was he great at playing his role on a fantastic, contending team years ago? Absolutely. What he can’t seem to understand is that his role on this team is pretty much the same. Yeah, his talent is a bit higher relative to the average player on the team than it was then. But his me-centric play neither generates wins nor contributes toward the development of the team. His presence on the Pistons is very much like AI’s. Sure, he competes with effort more often than not and he still has enough talent to be valuable in the right role. But he overestimates his talent, doesn’t buy into the team, and plays the wrong role. Still a likable player, but not one I ever want to see on the Pistons again.

      • Feb 24, 201212:39 am
        by UncleTy

        Reply

        I couldn’t agree more, re-signing Tay for that length of time and that HUGE amount of money was CLEARLY a bad move…  I mean come on we all saw he was starting to have back problems last season, I totally expected him to be moved on to a contender making less but helping a team win…  Here in Detroit he isn’t hardly our best player yet is paid as if he is, bad move by Joe to say the least…  We got the best years out of Tay, now we are stuck with the watcing and overpaying for the downside of them… 

  • Feb 23, 201210:31 am
    by Patrick Hayes

    Reply

    Uh … Billups and Wallace were in their primes when they signed those contracts you mentioned. Prince was 31 when he signed his. Smart NBA teams don’t hand out lifetime achievement contracts to role players.

    • Feb 23, 201211:51 am
      by Jeremy

      Reply

      Hahaha “lifetime achivement contracts”…I’d personally consider it more a “decent series against T-Mac in the 2003 Playoffs and a spectacular play in the 2004 Playoffs achievement contract.” Other than those two moments, Tay has done absolutely nothing here. He isn’t the defensive force that he was/is considered to be. He is consistently torched by the league’s best offensive SF’s and doesn’t really put any pressure offensively on the guy guarding him – that is unless it is a guy who is drastically smaller than him. I would actually be willing to argue that he was the worst defensive player out of the starters on the teams that made the 6 straight ECF appearences. Tayshaun has and always will be a role player, and he absolutely does not belong on this team as the leader/mentor that Dumars wanted him to be when he signed this deal. Watch the game tapes from this season so far and count how many offensive possesions became stagnate because the ball was in Tay’s hands and he felt he could take his man off the dribble. Next count how many times the team actually scored on those possesions. Ultimately, I’d be searching for a trade partner as soon as March 1st rolls around…

      • Feb 23, 201212:03 pm
        by tarsier

        Reply

        Come on dude, I don’t want Tay now, but don’t dismiss his history with Detroit. Prince played at a fringe all-star level for years. He never got in but he was like Monta Ellis, perpetually a maybe-he’ll-get-in-maybe-not. He was great at providing efficient scoring without detracting from the contributions of anyone else on the court (a very underrated skill set), and he was the Pistons best option when the shot clock ran low and they had to iso.

    • Feb 23, 20129:10 pm
      by Max

      Reply

      Didn’t Prince get a pay cut?

      • Feb 23, 20129:41 pm
        by Patrick Hayes

        Reply

        Yes. But the comment I was responding to was comparing the deal Prince just signed to the deals Wallace and Billups signed in the early 2000s that were around the mid-level. I was just pointing out that signing a 31-year-old to a deal that is around the mid-level (and actually, Prince’s is above the mid-level) is not the same value as signing players who were in their primes to similar deals as the team did with Wallace and Billups.

  • Feb 23, 20122:48 pm
    by frankie d

    Reply

    tay’s presence is proving to be detrimental to the team.
    the team should be turning the page, turning the leadership of the team over to the young guys, but tay is there, occupying a space that he truly is not qualified to occupy.
    the most damning stat is that he is just a tick behind monroe in terms or shots – 13.0 for tay, 13.1 for monroe – but he is shooting the worst percentage of any of the top 7 players, .406.  
    he obviously appears to believe that his senior status allows him to be so prolific, but the team would obviously be much better if he were to revert to the role he played so well with the contending pistons teams: as the 4th or 5th option and a bailout shooter when the clock runs down.
    because of dumars’ obvious affection, and his senior status, it seems unlikely that he will ever take that step back.  
    and as long as he doesn’t, it means a lesser role for the young guys who should be developing as the players who take and make the important plays in tight games.
    for a team that is supposedly rebuilding, the pistons are doing a lot of things – leaving tay in such a prominent role, giving prime rotation roles to ben wallace and wilkins – that directly work against rebuilding and retard the process.

    • Feb 23, 20123:20 pm
      by D_S_V

      Reply

      Agreed; Tayshaun is really making this whole rebuilding process retarded.

      • Feb 23, 20126:23 pm
        by pistonsfan

        Reply

        ur stupid and know nothing. maybe look at tayshaun’s stats before u go ahead and make assumptions. look at his recent games

        • Feb 23, 20129:39 pm
          by Patrick Hayes

          Reply

          His last three games: 6-for-16, 5-for-14, 2-for-15. He’s shooting 39 percent in February. His stats aren’t going to help your argument at all.

  • Feb 23, 20124:28 pm
    by rick77

    Reply

    Again comments liek these make me happy I am not playing sports because they love you when you win but loathe you when you lose. Again a 28 million dollar contarct rather it wasabeginning or ending is fair considering the market. What you think we should have paid Dunleavy Jr? Cmon get a grip at the end of the day the contract is friendly enough that he can be traded if that is the intent if it ws 8 or 9 I would probably say damn but I think you are reaching sir. As I said before I respect what you do and your insight but you are wrong about your opinion on it . I guess you guys would rather have Grant Hill. Yes he may not be playing at an All Star level but his importance to long term of the team is important rather any of you choose to see it or not. Just because he may have had a bad episode here or there does not mean he is not teaching the young players how to be a professional. If I were a writer these are the things I would write about not what everyone else deems to be sexy. The truth hurts sometimes and I think the fact that these comments are coming from fans show that you care,but at the same time shows how sometimes people can put too much feeling into without looking at the entire body of work. I think most of you would agree that if your production at work slipped and everyone esle had a slightly different opinion of you than they did before things would sound different. My point is it easy to judge without being in that locker room or those films sessions. Im laughing cause last year it was all Hamilton now this year it is all Prince. Next year it will be Stuckey and so forth. “You win some and you lose some but you live to fight another day” Craigs Daddy Friday Part 1 hahaha! The Pistons will win again nomatter how much we complain about it. Its called the cycle of life.

    • Feb 23, 20125:29 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Haha. You’re happy you’re not playing sports for millions of dollars because sometimes people write critical comments online? I think the trade off is fair, I’d certainly take it. Pay me Prince’s salary and every troll on the internet can tweet that I’m an asshole all day long for all I care.

      “Again a 28 million dollar contarct rather it wasabeginning or ending is fair considering the market.”

      He’s 31 and shooting 40 percent from the field. Worse, he’s leading the team in shot attempts per game (or he was until Monroe moved past him by .1 per game in the Raptors game). So he’s inefficient, old and he’s taking shots away from younger, more efficient options on offense. Sounds like a winning investment to me.

      “What you think we should have paid Dunleavy Jr?”

      Dunleavy is getting paid $7.5 million over two years. He’s averaging 10 points per game in 23 minutes, shooting 45 percent and 36 percent from three. So not only is he more productive than Prince, he’s a way better value. Do I think Dunleavy is good? Not really. Would I trade his contract and production for Prince’s in a millisecond? Absolutely.

      “I think most of you would agree that if your production at work slipped and everyone esle had a slightly different opinion of you than they did before things would sound different.”

      Sports are different. Most jobs, if people are fairly smart and hard-working, you can spend 30 years or more doing and do them at a high level. Sports are totally different. Once players get to Prince’s age, especially with his body type and the number of minutes he’s played, their games deteriorate pretty rapidly in a lot of cases. I have no issues whatsoever with Prince taking the contract the Pistons offered. It was a great, great deal for him. It was just bad business from the team’s perspective. He’s a declining player with limited value and he represents another expensive contract for a player who is difficult to trade. From that perspective, it was a bad signing.

    • Feb 23, 20125:36 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      I’d happily take the hate if I were paid those numbers. But you are just flat out wrong. You think Prince would be easy to deal? Who is gonna take him? He might be worth $7M this season in the right context. But there is no reason to expect his value to go anywhere but down for the next 3 years. And he will still be raking in big bucks.

  • Feb 23, 20126:21 pm
    by pistonsfan

    Reply

    you guys and SI r saying f*****g garbage. Tayshaun Prince is putting up good numbers, and the Pistons need a solid veteran, as they’re becoming a younger team. gordon, wallace, charlie v cant be that veteran. tayprincer is. and he does put up solid numbers, ur acting like he’s terrible

    • Feb 23, 20129:33 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Objectively, he’s not putting up good numbers at all. He’s shooting by far a career low at 40 percent. He’s getting to the line the fewest times per game since his first year as a starter. Career-low 3-pt percentage too.

      Now, I’m willing to buy that he brings intangible intelligence qualities to the table that would be good to have around your young developing players. But you know what he brings to the table that’s terrible? Until the Toronto game, he was averaging the most shot attempts of anyone on the team. Sorry, but his stats show him to be an incredibly inefficient scorer this season. Monroe, Knight, Stuckey and Gordon are all much, much better options offensively, and Prince has been shooting more than them. That’s not playing intelligently. He’s a serviceable player if his role is to be a fourth or fifth option on offense. Unfortunately, he has too big a role on this team, and the results are him taking away shot attempts/opportunities for players who, simply, are better on offense than he is. When you combine that with his age and a fairly large contract, it’s fair to say that he wasn’t a good signing. He certainly wasn’t the worst signing by any team in the offseason (and Lowe, the SI writer, does have several others listed before Prince as worse signings), but he’s definitely played bad enough to be in the discussion for worst investments.

      As I said above, Mike Dunleavy is having a much better season at a fraction of the cost. I’m not saying that because I would love to have Dunleavy on the team or anything, but the point is the Pistons could’ve found comparable or even better production for less money than they are paying Prince. That is what makes it a bad signing.

  • Feb 23, 20129:28 pm
    by Max

    Reply

    Prince is 5th in field goal attempts per 36 minutes and about 6-8 players are stacked pretty evenly in that regard.   The issue of leading him the team in shots is misleading.
    More relevant in my view is that Daye and Jerebko have thus far failed to even approach Prince as a small forward.  Further, Prince has suffered rather than otherwise from the team’s inability to find a consistent back up at the position for many years now–probably since Corliss Williamson left and for the last few, RIP was actually the best option.
    There has often been the speculation that Prince demands too many minutes or something but there has never been a player earning those minutes to give him any complaint so it’s just speculation.
    Also, Prince has definitely been steadily picking it up.

    • Feb 23, 20129:38 pm
      by Patrick Hayes

      Reply

      Jerebko has played way better than Prince this season. I agree with you on Daye though, he’s done nothing to prove he’s worthy of minutes. I have no issue with Prince playing over him. But Jerebko? He impacts the game more positively than Prince by just about any measure.

      “Also, Prince has definitely been steadily picking it up.”

      What? These are his last 3 games before the All-Star break: 5-for-14, 2-for-15 and 6-for-16. He shot 40 percent in December, 41 percent in January and he’s down to 39 percent in February. I don’t see how he’s picking it up. He’s been pretty consistently bad all season, save for a few solid games.

      • Feb 23, 201210:55 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        BTW: Something hit me a little funny.  I’m in New York and the people around here were going crazy about J.R. Smith after he went 6-16 like he was the final piece.

  • Feb 23, 201210:30 pm
    by Max

    Reply

    Prince’s scoring, assists and rebounds have gone up each month.  The shooting pct is interesting in that he shot well from 3 but poorly from 2 the first two months and he shot better from 2 this month but went through a slump from threes.  Nevertheless, he had his best month scoring and nearly doubled what he was putting up the first two months regarding boards and assists.
    On Jerebko; I said he hasn’t approached Prince as a small forward and I think Jonas’ skill set and the Pistons needs at small forward make him a better fit at the four.  The trouble when comparing him to Prince is that he can’t create for anyone of help to run the offense.  If they had a great point guard or scoring big to pair with Monroe things might be different, but as it stands, you can only have so many players starting who can’t get their own shot or create for others.

  • Feb 24, 20129:58 am
    by apa8ren9

    Reply

    Ive made this point before, but with Prince everyone is being too short sighted.  Its one thing to not like the signing, but to act like this will hamstring any progress going forward is just ridiculous.  Moving forward, the highest salaries on the team are CV and BG.  Both of which we know unless we start winning 50 games will be gone. (If that happens then they will be living up to their contracts and the point will be moot) There currently isnt anyone worthy of being paid higher than Prince that will have their contract up.  Dumars stated that unless its of financial gain or a young building block they arent going for it.  I know its conversation fodder but Prince’s presence does mean something.  In two years tops we will have only 2 players (Stuckey and Prince) making 8+ mill a year.  We expect changes to the roster during that time.  There wont be many teams that will be in that situation.  That’s the worst case financially if they dont make any moves.  How much more flexibility will you need?  Especially since we expect our lottery picks to improve considerably by 2014.

  • Feb 25, 20123:01 am
    by Max

    Reply

    @apa8ren9…..I concur and don’t understand why Prince is even controversial.  For me, his is simply one of my favorites of all time.  I’ve watched his entire career and I’ve seen nothing to make me think he’s not worth his contract.  My worst fear this off season was losing him.
    Prince puts up nearly the same numbers every year relative to NBA players.  He is putting up slightly worse numbers so far this year, but started off not looking right physically.  He has returned to form but is now playing too many minutes–as usual.  His worst stat are his pcts and field goal pct is down in general due to league wide fatigue.  Prince has missed some layups lately that he would never miss and it’s not age as Monroe is more often guilty of playing winded than Prince.   His turnovers have also gone down steadily throughout the year even as his minutes have gone up which a lot of people should appreciate a whole lot more with this team.   Instead people say nonsense like, “I’d just throw so and so into the fire and who cares how many times he turns the ball over.”.
    Which brings up; I love Monroe but there have been two big surprises this year stats wise.  The free throw shooting is an absolute revelation and considerably raised his ceiling, but last year’s historic year of not turning the ball over has now been exposed as somewhat more of an indicator of how seldom Q let him do anything than as a marker of his ability to take care of the ball.   He has gone from one of the best turnover players of all time to a top 25 league leader in most turnovers or worse by my guess in one season–which isn’t to say I wouldn’t like him used more often as a hub.
     

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