We’ve discussed it here before at length, but one thing Joe Dumars and the Pistons have been very good at over the last 10 years or so is identifying talent outside the lottery in drafts. Chad Ford of ESPN, in his re-draft of the 2007 draft class, has two Pistons first round picks who were not taken in the lottery listed as lottery picks if things were to be redone today:
5. (via Boston) Rodney Stuckey, G, 6-5, Eastern Washington (originally drafted No. 15 by Pistons)
After Durant, Horford, Noah and Gasol are off the board, things get a little dicier. Jeff Green had a successful run with the Thunder, and you can argue it would have been better had he not been playing second fiddle to Durant. But in retrospect, the Sonics may have been better off with Stuckey. He was probably the most underrated player in the entire class and would have been able to come in and play the 2 right away in Seattle.
10. Arron Afflalo, G, 6-4, UCLA (originally drafted No. 27 by Pistons)
Coming out of college, scouts worried that Afflalo lacked ideal athleticism and size for his position and wasn’t a good enough shooter. But he improved his jump shot and made a name for himself as a strong perimeter defender.
Finding insanely good value in 2007? Good Joe Dumars! Giving away half of that talent in a salary dump? Bad Joe Dumars!
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