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Jared Sullinger to Pistons in ESPN’s new mock draft

In his latest ESPN mock draft, Chad Ford has the Pistons drafting Jared Sullinger with the No. 8 pick:

The Pistons need a center. They could reach a little and bring in Tyler Zeller. Or they can be content with Greg Monroe at the center position and add Sullinger to the mix. Sully doesn’t play above the rim, but he does rebound and has great hands. At this point, I think the Pistons would pass on trying to hit a home run and just get someone who could help a little.

I’d prefer John Henson, who’s still available in the mock draft, but this set of picks nears a scenario I fear: Sullinger or Perry Jones being the best player available when the Pistons draft.

46 Comments

  • Apr 11, 20123:48 pm
    by sop

    Reply

    I hate the Henson idea. Henson won’t be able to guard his man or score effectively in the NBA with weight issues, which will continue to limit him for the remainder of his career. He’s already a junior and has not increased his bulk since coming out of high school. He’s a horrendous free throw shooter and shooter in general. AND many scouts have predicted he will be little more than an average weakside defender. He’s Austin Daye without Daye’s 3-point shot.

    • Apr 11, 20124:54 pm
      by Mark

      Reply

      Yes, I agree. Npw that we can pretty much say that Daye that will never be a player in this league because he can’t add weight, I’m shocked that so many ppl are just ignoring that and willing to take another 6-11 stringbean.

      At least Daye had offensive talent. Henson’s whole game is defense, which at 220lbs, and bit a soft too, won’t be effective in the NBA.

      If he were the all-world defensive talent like Davis, I’d overlook the weight a little, but he’s not that elite defender. So I dont think you take him that high. He reminds me exactly of Amir Johnson, who we got with the 55th pick. No way you take Amir 8th overall this year.

      • Apr 12, 20129:43 am
        by Todd

        Reply

        Had Amir played a year or two of college ball, he would have definitely been taken in the Top 8!

    • Apr 11, 20126:37 pm
      by oats

      Reply

      Shot blocking and rebounding tend to translate pretty well to the NBA, and Henson does both of those things well. You know who else was 6’11″, 220 lbs after 3 years of college? Marcus Camby. I think he played defense pretty well, and continues to do so despite his age. Henson is neither the athlete nor scorer that pre-injury Camby was, but a career similar to post injury Camby is a possibility. I think the odds are stacked pretty heavily against Henson being more than a career back up and defensive substitute, but if he bulks up just a bit his ceiling is that he could be legitimate starter and All Defensive Team candidate. It’s not a terrible risk for the Pistons considering their need for a big man that can play defense, although I’d feel much better if they were taking that gamble at pick 15 than pick 8. Still, don’t be so quick to dismiss a guy who is as productive as Henson.

  • Apr 11, 20123:53 pm
    by Daye and Knight

    Reply

    I wouldn’t mind Perry Jones III because of his upside, but no thanks on Sullinger…I like Henson if he can gain some weight

  • Apr 11, 20124:28 pm
    by Rodman4Life

    Reply

    I’d take Henson in a minute!

  • Apr 11, 20124:56 pm
    by Max

    Reply

    I’m fine with Zeller.  Moose will be much more dominant at power forward and banging against smaller bodies will keep him fresher to hopefully play more minutes.
    As of now, the team still has Maxiell, JJ, Daye, and Charlie V at the four next year, but there will be no Big Ben at the five.
    Dumars passed on a needed big last year to draft Knight and I don’t think the has the luxury of drafting anything other than a big that makes sense with Monroe this year.
    Also, the rumors during the last two drafts said Dumars wanted Udoh and Biyombo respectively who were not necessarily “the best players available” as much as they were players who were in the mix and were apparently the player Joe liked.   The Warriors surprised by taking Udoh over Monroe and Jordan swooped in with a trade to get one spot ahead of the Pistons to land Biyombo for the Bobcats.

  • Apr 11, 20125:14 pm
    by Corey

    Reply

    The odd thing is that Ford in his chat today said Tyler Zeller was a top ten pick. So I’m not sure why he’d say the pistons would be reaching to take him.

    I don’t want Henson. No more players who might be heavy and strong enough to play NBA ball in 3-4 years, please!

    I think things look pretty good. The Pistons, worst case, will have their pick of 3 out of 4 of Sullinger, Zeller, Meyers Leonard, and Arnett Moultrie. There’s at least a couple quality starters there. They just have to pick the right one and develop him properly. With Frank, the second part has a much better chance than in years past.

  • Apr 11, 20125:18 pm
    by Jodi Jezz

    Reply

    Trade the pick for a young Center in the NBA or trade our 2013 1st rounder + our 2012 1st rounder to trade up and get Andre Drummond!! We don’t need a PF, SF, SG, or PG…We need a defensive Center, that’s it…

  • Apr 11, 20125:22 pm
    by D_S_V

    Reply

    John Henson’s stock has dropped partly due to weight but also partly due to his goofy picture they use on all of the mock drafts.

  • Apr 11, 20125:23 pm
    by D_S_V

    Reply

    PS I’ll take Fabulous Melo over Sullinger.

  • Apr 11, 20126:08 pm
    by Kris

    Reply

    Sullinger is crafty, competetive, skilled player who would contribute from day one. Yes, he’s not going to be so dominant, like in college, where he bullied almost everyone down the block. Fortunatelly he’s got array of post moves and just plays smart. I think on offense they would work beautifully with Monroe. And let’s not forget, offense is our problem as well. Counting on Monroe to carry the offense in the paint himself might be a stretch. On the defensive end, Sully is not going to block shots, but he knows his limitations and is able to position himself well to draw a charge + got quick hands. I guess it would be easier to add defensive stopper in 2nd round, via free agency or trade, than player like Sullinger any other way. Injury report might be worth to look at though, but I don’t think it’s a red flag either. Comparing to that, Henson is a gamble. Tyller Zeller might work fine, but is certainly less talented than Sullinger.

    • Apr 12, 20129:47 am
      by Todd

      Reply

      While we may not necessarily be looking for another guy like this, I see Sullinger being a very similar player to DeJuan Blair, or a poor man’s Kevin Love. He is never going to play above the rim like we might want, but he is going to rebound, play well in the low post and be an adequate defender. While I wish we could have Anthony Davis or Andre Drummond, Sullinger could be worse than some of the alternatives included super-model thin “bigs” like Henson and Zeller.

  • Apr 11, 20126:13 pm
    by Coach_Ackley

    Reply

    I agree with Dan here.. I’d much rather have John Henson than Sully any day of the week… If you look at it Henson is the next best shot blocker in this draft… He’s even a better shot blocker than Drummond and the only person better than Henson well we all know his name ” Anthony Davis “……

  • Apr 11, 20126:18 pm
    by MrBlockedShot

    Reply

    If we can’t pick Davis nor Drummond I would rather pick Tyler Zeller. We don’t need another smaller Monroe in Sullinger (zero athletism again). Zeller needs to improve a lot but is a good prospect for us. imho Zeller is more complete than Henson, which is basically defense oriented. Zeller playing the center and Monroe at PF could be a good frontcourt for us in the years to come. Fab Melo looks interesting, maybe with our second round pick?

  • Apr 11, 20126:27 pm
    by MB

    Reply

    Why would the pistons even think about drafting a PG? I’m already mad that the pistons decided that this was year to start winning.  In my opinion this is the best draft since the 2003 because of the NBA lockout making some players want to stay an extra year.  We would all love to see Anthony Davis in a Pistons uniform, but that is jot happening.  We need to decide what role we need to either get a SF or a big.  I like Perry Jones III or Zeller. We have a better chance of getting a good SF in the second round than a PF or Center

  • Apr 11, 20127:04 pm
    by vic

    Reply

    Give me Henson. Almost 14 10 and 3 blks is nothing to sniff at. Especially when you are playing with a top center, Tyler Zeller. Especially coming from North Carolina… Ed Davis turned out pretty well, and he was slim too.   I’d take him over Zeller because his style of play fits better with Monroe, and he’s more athletic. 

    As a freshman he was 183 pounds. Now he’s 220, and you can see the difference if you watch his youtubes. I have no reason to believe he won’t continue to add muscle the right way when it becomes a full time career. He’s a baller, plus he has a good attitude. He has fun on the court and loves to block shots. That’s what the Pistons need if we don’t get ADavis or ADrummond.

  • Apr 11, 20127:30 pm
    by Fennis

    Reply

    Kris –
     
    You’re exactly right. I think few people understand how far the Pistons are from true contention. They’re a below average offensive team, and a below average defensive team. Listen, if this team picks Zeller or Henson they’ll improve ever so slightly and plateau for the next five years at .500 basketball. We’ll never get a pick that will get us into contention.
    Take the player that has the chance to carry the team. I don’t care what his athleticism is, Sullinger is smart, crafty, dedicated, and hungry. Not to mention that he’d immediately make us one of the top rebounding teams in the league.
    Are you a “highlights fan” or a true fan? A Sullinger-Monroe combo makes the highlight fan’s stomach turn. For good reason, we’re all tired of sub-par athleticism in Detroit basketball. But the true fan recognizes that the Pistons need to hit a home run in one of these drafts. Zeller and Henson are definitively not that. Sullinger has a shot — I think the Boozer/Love comparisons aren’t far off. Perry Jones also has a shot.
    We need a difference maker, not a solid front line defender. We need to think championships rather than adopt the Atlanta Hawks mentality.
     
     

    • Apr 11, 201211:07 pm
      by frankie d

      Reply

      sullinger does remind me of boozer…with more heart and a better motor.  i just remember seeing him in high school and being amazed that a guy that fat could be such a good player.  
      he’s obviously put in a lot of work and gotten in better shape.  he seems like the kind of player who will continue to work hard, improve, get his body in better shape and ultimately have a long solid career.
      how many times will teams make the same mistake with guys like boozer and sullinger?

  • Apr 11, 20127:36 pm
    by ryan

    Reply

    I’m one of those folks who’s been cringing every time the Piston’s won another game so i’m pretty disappointed about the prospect of picking so low in the lottery. I suppose we’re all pretty much in the same boat on that one… disappointing year in many ways.

    That said I think that Jared Sullinger is going to be a very solid pro and I wouldn’t feel bad taking him. He isn’t the best suited for our squad but he’s a guy who has NBA skills already. I believe he’s also the type of player who’ll continue to work on his game and improve throughout his career. Take a look at his shooting range as an example of the work he’s already done. My feeling is that if we can get him in here working with Arnie Kander and learning to play with Greg Monroe he’ll help us improve. I think we can run a very effective offense with him on our team. Defensively we’ll be giving up something but there’s nothing to be done about that and we shouldn’t be terrible.

    I am definitely not interested in trading up for Andre Drummond. Trading down if we could get two picks and make one of them Tyler Zeller would be interesting. Praying that for some reason Michael Kidd-Gilchrist falls is what I’ll be doing.

  • Apr 11, 20128:57 pm
    by Jay

    Reply

    Good God No!!
     
    Jared Sullinger is the 2012 version of Danny Fortsen. A PF who is barely 6’8″, plays below the rim, can’t score when defended by a taller player, and gives you NOTHING defensively at the NBA level.
    Any of the 6’11 or 7′ is a better choice than Sullinger. Zeller may not be an explosive athlete, but one thing that wont change is the fact that he starts out at 7′!!!
    Personally I’d like to see Meyers Leonard, Arnett Moutrie, or Fab Melo in a Pistons uniform next year. If Joe could trade down a few spots and pick up an extra 2nd rd pick in the process I think that would be a major win in this draft.

    • Apr 11, 201210:19 pm
      by Daye and Knight

      Reply

      I wouldn’t mind trading down for a mid first round pick and an extra 2nd round pick..but I’m not sure we have the financial flexibility to add another player unless Singler doesn’t come back to the states and we dump either Gordon or Charlie V…and then it depends on if J-Max picks up his option or if we want to bring Macklin back for another year. This is a very deep draft so trading down and drafting Henson/Melo wouldn’t be a bad idea if it works out financially.

  • Apr 11, 20129:03 pm
    by MB

    Reply

    Blow the team up

  • Apr 11, 20129:05 pm
    by tarsier

    Reply

    I’d rather have PJ3 than Sullinger.

  • Apr 11, 20129:57 pm
    by Corey

    Reply

    An idea: if we draft Sullinger, we should sign Omer Asik as a free agent. Best defensive big man in the NBA, but he doesn’t score so might be available for midlevel.

    • Apr 12, 20121:04 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      “Best defensive big man in the NBA”

      Have you heard of this relatively unknown guy named Dwight Howard? Or even Marc Gasol, Tyson Chandler, Andrew Bogut, Kevin Garnett, Serge Ibaka, or Al Horford?

  • Apr 11, 201210:31 pm
    by Fennis

    Reply

    Check out Kevin Love highlights at UCLA. It’s not that he couldn’t jump high — he couldn’t jump at all! No, Sullinger is not the second coming of K. Love. But that said, no one would’ve anticipated Love being an MVP candidate coming out of UCLA. That was patently absurd for a guy of his athletic ability.
     
    The difference between the Loves and Sullingers of the world and the Fortsons is heart, tenacity, work ethic, and a skill level that trumps athleticism. While Sullinger doesn’t have Love’s range, he is very skilled with identical intangibles. I didn’t like the idea at first, but it’s the type of foresight you need when managing a middling team stuck in the mid to late lottery for the past three years. We need to find the sleeper at 7-9. Zeller is just not that guy.

    • Apr 11, 201211:07 pm
      by Coach_Ackley

      Reply

      ^^^ Dude kinda sounds like you LOVE Sully.. Sully is not that good I watched him play alot this season and if you got into Sully he either fouled out or tried to do to much and if you had height he had trouble scoring and really defending the paint.. The Pistons need to focus on defense first and then scoring with present itself…. It’s defense we need not offense… Defense wins championships……..

      • Apr 12, 20121:05 pm
        by tarsier

        Reply

        Actually, defense + offense wins championships. Title teams absolutely need both.

      • Apr 12, 20123:03 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        DE-FENSE!  DE-FENSE!

        • Apr 12, 20125:00 pm
          by tarsier

          Reply

          oh, my bad, i didn’t count on such an articulate and well-reasoned counter-argument.

  • Apr 11, 201210:32 pm
    by Fennis

    Reply

  • Apr 11, 201211:00 pm
    by mike c

    Reply

    did you guys watch UNC or OSU this year? henson was a beast and has underrated hands (he won’t be a first or second offensive option, but he can definitely finish around the rim and on putbacks). zeller to me is being criminally underrated. he has a great post game given his age and has shown a willingness to get nasty on the boards and on D. sullinger reminds me of corliss williamson–big lower body, undersized for the nba, and not athletic enough to hang with good nba PFs, of which there are many (PF is probably the strongest position in the league other than PG). he seems a bit too focused on being a star and i wouldn’t be surprised if sully became known as “sulky” if he doesn’t get 10+ shots/game. he also would give detroit less flexibility; with zeller or henson, they could play either one and monroe at either big spot (no way sully can guard centers in the nba).  

  • Apr 11, 201211:01 pm
    by frankie d

    Reply

    sullinger’s not the ideal pick, but he will be a good solid pro and would be a good overall addition to the team, imho.
    he is, however, nothing like fortson.  
    fortson was a brute, with the offensive skill and touch of a blacksmith.  he had no range, and would blast shots off the glass from in close, hoping they would rattle in the basket.
    sullinger is a very skilled offensive player who has range all the way out to the 3 point line.  
    about the only thing they had in common was that both are very good rebounders.
    comparing fortson to sullinger is like comparing leon douglass to john shumate.
    or to pick a more recent pair, kwame brown to greg monroe.
    in other words, no comparison at all.

    • Apr 12, 20123:04 pm
      by Max

      Reply

      I think I’d rather have a young Fortson.

  • Apr 12, 20124:27 am
    by France

    Reply

    Just cross your fingers and hope we can draft Ant Davis.

  • Apr 12, 20125:03 am
    by Kris

    Reply

    Argument that Sullinger can’t score when defended by a taller player is not exactly relevant. Teams were throwing a 2-3 inch taller defenders at him and double teaming because he is that strong inside. He usually got his won anyway. Besides, that allowed other frontcourt players, like Deshaun Thomas, to thrive. Since we also have Monroe to take care of, it would not be possible to turn so much attention on Sullinger. And, frankly how many college guys dealt with so much defensive pressure  as he did? 17.2 ppg on 54%, 10.2 rpg, 1.2 ast. I guess he held his own.

  • Apr 12, 20125:31 am
    by Kris

    Reply

    Sorry, I have put Sullinger stats for 2010/11 instead. But guess what, 17.5 ppg on 52%, 9.2 rpg, 1.2 ast, 1.1 blk, 1.2 stl. does not look bad either, does it? 77% ft is OK as well.

  • Apr 12, 20127:01 am
    by Corey

    Reply

    After digging some more, I’m impressed with sullinger’s shooting. 44% on 3′s and a beast in the post? We could use that.

    On The other hand, Zeller or Leonard would give us a full size athletic center to play next to Monroe, and I think that would really unleash Monroe to dominate most opposing power forwards.

    Corey

  • Apr 12, 20128:51 am
    by Russell

    Reply

    How does Sullinger compare against Dujuan Blair, Kevin Love or Carlos Boozer coming out of college?  Considering his skills, winning pedigree, and size…I think pretty well.   Its not like this is a fluke anymore.  Take out the great white hopes (Jimmer, Morrison, etc) and you have a long list of highly effective thick 6-8 talented smart ballers that are making huge impacts in the league all over the place.  I see no reason that Sullinger would take a step back in his progress both physically and mentally.  He’s been playing, and beating, the best competition in the world his entire basketball life.

    I like this pick.  The intelligence quotient of Sullinger and Monroe would be off the charts.

    • Apr 12, 20129:52 am
      by Todd

      Reply

      Glad to see others out there recognize the Blair – Sully comparison (sans knee surgery)!

  • Apr 12, 20129:44 am
    by Lorenzo

    Reply

    Sullinger I think would be an O.K. pick all things considered but I feel he won’t be better than a solid rotation player.I’m in the Perry JonesIII group on this, his skill set is so unique I think the kid can be a superstar down the line. Might not be exactly what we “need” and yes there are possible red flags that will have to be analyzed at length making him the riskier pick…but if we are going best player available (as the team should be) then I think Jones is the pick.

  • Apr 12, 201212:28 pm
    by Casey

    Reply

    Trade the pick, plus Max and Daye or Singler plus a future pick for Josh Smith. Cut CV sign  Kamen

    Knight / Will
    Stuckey / BG
    Prince / Singler
    Josh Smith / JJ
    Monroe / Kamen

  • Apr 12, 201212:32 pm
    by MrBlockedShot

    Reply

    Hey guys, you’re worrying too much…we’re going to get Anthony Davis for sure ;-)

  • Apr 12, 201211:18 pm
    by mike c

    Reply

    well, as a pistons fan, i sure hope the sully-lovers are right if the pistons pick him. but people talking about how length doesn’t matter b/c sully overpowered people in college seem to be ignoring the simple fact that he will not be able to do the same thing in the nba — he won’t be padding his stats against the undersized front lines of umich and northwestern (anyone remember the final four performance v. thomas robinson, an nba-style athelete? 5-19). and let’s hope (a) he’s actually not planning to jack up nba-distance 3s very often; and (b) he’s not a petulant guy who overrates his abilities (again, did you watch osu this year?).

    p.s. noticed the poll results w/ basically 2/3 saying dumars should keep his job. joe’s one of my childhood favorites and in the early 2000s he did a good-to-great job. but for the past 5 years or so he’s arguably been a bottom-5 gm in the league. the contracts for gordon and villanueva (which, as has been said a million times, were two guys the pistons did not need even at the time) are unconscionable. those are two of the worst deals in recent memory, not least because they prevented the pistons from getting other useful FAs. it’s time to stop living off memories of the wallace brothers transactions. it’s not like we won 2, 3, or 4 rings in those years such that joe should be considered untouchable.

  • Dec 9, 20137:39 pm
    by Gidget

    Reply

    Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it
    seems as though you relied on the video to make your point.

    You definitely know what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on just posting videos to your weblog when you could be giving us something informative to read?

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