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Video: Joe Dumars discusses the Darko mistake after making the Andre Drummond pick

Brendan Savage of MLive has the above video of Joe Dumars talking at the Palace tonight after the Pistons picked Andre Drummond ninth overall in the 2012 draft.

Natalie Sitto at Need4Sheed also has audio of Andre Drummond from a conference call.

Also, our friend Ben Gulker has a post over at Detroit Bad Boys looking at some of Drummond’s advanced stats. Hint: they’re not pretty. But I’m a big believer in being informed, so be happy about Drummond, but Ben’s take is also worth checking out.


  • Jun 28, 201211:11 pm
    by frankie d


    joe just admitted that he made the second pick in an historic draft after only talking to 2 people about an 18 year old kid he drafted.
    amazingly incompetent!
    how could anyone in a position so important do such little work on something so important?

  • Jun 28, 201211:21 pm
    by apa8ren9


    It shows how incredibly secure he is to admit a mistake.  Character isnt defined by how you act when things go well.  Its how you go about your business when things arent going well.  He also admitted that he changed how things were run from then on.   It was a big mistake, Ill admit but he survived and now has the chance to fix it.

  • Jun 28, 201211:36 pm
    by frankie d


    it took him almost a freaking decade to admit it.  it’s something a competent media could have at least tried to find out about a little bit sooner.
    i don’t attribute his acknowledging that information now as a sign of security on his part.
    i see it as an indication of a docile local media that never presses him about anything he doesn’t want to talk about. 
    as far as him changing…
    well, hello and welcome to the nba in the 21st century!
    his obvious laziness when it came to scouting was matched by his stubbornness regarding working with guys doing advanced stat work. 
    i think the team finally added a guy who helps with that kind of analysis this year.
    i think it’s pretty clear, when you hear about his admission tonight and know about his prior unwillingness to do other things more up-to-date teams have been doing, where the problems arise.
    joe d is using business models from previous generations and it has caught up to him as he is always one step behind.

    • Jun 29, 20123:39 am
      by Max


      So, so silly.   He said he had only two personal sources in Europe.   Darko was the consensus 2nd best player on the board and if you want to argue about it, he was the 3rd.   This means that the scouts and media agreed with where Darko was drafted so that means Dumars actually had hundreds to thousands of people telling him Darko should at least get serious consideration for the pick,
      Now, how many personal and credible sources do you think were available on Darko anyway?  The guy grew up with bombs going off overhead in a war torn country and was 17.   Further, how many teams were doing serious scouting and drafting of European players at that point?  The Pistons were actually, if not the best, at least in one of the higher tiers of franchises that was even willing to draft Euro players.
      Above comments about Dumars integrity showing through when he admits fault get kudos from me.  They guy doesn’t say a lot to the media and was never known for talking a lot in the public in the first place.   In fact, he has always, since the day he was drafted, been downright reticent.  What has that to do with whether he changes his philosophies and learns from his mistakes throughout his tenure?

  • Jun 29, 20126:23 am
    by d_ronii


    lets turn the page and hope we have a gem here

  • Jun 29, 20129:33 am
    by Steve K


    I’m no Joe D slappy (still don’t like giving up the 1st rounder to Bobcats), but I personally think it’s impressive that Joe owned up to it.

    To Frankie D’s point, is it incompetence? Yes. Dreadfully, painfully so.
    Yet, it’s not like Darko grew up in Memphis. Nor does Joe or his team speak Darko’s native language. No doubt the Pistons’ brass should’ve made the effort, gotten translators, done their homework, etc. But they didn’t. They worked him out and were impressed. And fell for the hype.

    Still, my guess is most GMs have too big an ego to admit a mistake. I think it speaks to Joe D’s character that he’s man enough to admit the mistake… even a decade later.

    • Jun 29, 20121:05 pm
      by frankie d


      this is the real problem with his admission…
      it confirms what many of us have thought for a long time: that joe has been lazy and simply behind the curve when it comes to running an nba franchise.
      as noted, he just recently hired a guy to do advanced metrics, after most forward-thinking teams have been utilizing this tool for years.
      when you look at his trades and moves in free agency over the last 4 or 5 years it simply looks like he just doesn’t understand simple stuff like the value of certain certain types of contracts and acquisitions.
      and/or how to best use his cap space.
      when was the last time he did something as simple as acquire a player because he was able to absorb a contract because the team had the space?  that is one of the best ways for rebuilding/retooling teams to get cheap, young talent.  he’s thrown away the chance to put his team in position to do exactly that a couple of times since he traded chauncey and the team started its slide.  instead, he’s loaded up his recent rosters with dead weight, retread vets and over-paid role players.
      he has to give away a first round draft choice to try to correct a horrendous mistake of his own regarding a free agent acquisition.  
      in doing this last trade, he is obviously setting himself up to pursue invariably expensive free agents, instead of coveting his draft choices as a way to acquire good, cheap, young talent.  the way the new CBA is set up, that is going to be the best way to move forward.    
      he simply doesn’t seem to understand the way the league has been evolving over the last decade and his moves reflect that.  
      it is somewhat ironic that the best moves he’s made over the last few years – his incredibly lucky draft choices that have literally fallen into his lap – have been non-moves.  he’s simply lazily and stoically sat there and then had the courage to take a shot at players who have slid further than they should have.
      i definitely give him credit for having that courage, but his other  moves have not reflected the kind of acumen i’d expect of an nba GM. 
      i wonder what he will have to say about signing CV and BG in another 6 or 7 years.  what kind of incredible incompetence will be revealed then?  
      did he even talk with anyone about CV other than maybe hammond, before investing almost 40 million in him?
      i just think the more joe d reveals, the more he reveals that he is simply not up to the task anymore.
      and i don’t think it is simply “reticence”.
      joe d talks to the media a lot.  he is close to some reporters, especially guys like terry foster and drew sharpe, who kind of grew up with him in the late ’80′s.  joe simply doesn’t provide material for attribution and he doesn’t usually deal with the media unless it is exactly on his terms.  
      that is, imho, not a positive attribute, especially when the team has presented huge issues over the last 5 or 6 years.  instead of stepping up and answering fans’ questions, he hides behind leaks to his various media sources and only answers questions he wants to answer.  instead of being a sign of integrity, imho, it is a sign of abject cowardice.  he should have enough respect for fans to step up and deal with the good, the bad and the ugly of everything he’s done.  let reporters have at him and ask questions.  it is up to him how detailed his answers are. he absolutely refuses to do that, and the media goes along with him in a very docile fashion, as they sit there and seem mesmerized by his sporadic and occasional yoda-like ramblings.
      after the CV/BG fiasco and the rip turmoil, i figured that joe deserved a shot at fixing the mess he created.  but after this year and frank’s hiring and tay’s signing and last year’s over-reliance on older vets and the charlotte trade and then this year’s draft – the luck in getting drummond aside – i just don’t think joe gets it anymore.
      his admission about being so incredibly lazy about darko was like finding out that what you had long suspected and feared about someone was dead on true.  he really was as unprepared for that draft as it appeared he was.  he really did make his decision based on talking to a couple of people and one workout.
      that one draft changed the course of the pistons.  it lead to an entire range of subsequent actions – from stuckey to chauncey and beyond – that turned an elite franchise into a shell of itself.
      yes, he’s changed his way of evaluating draft choices because of his historic blunder, but what other incompetence, lazy stuff is happening right now?  and how long before that stuff comes out of the closet? 
      time for the team to cut its losses and put him out to pasture.

      • Jun 29, 20128:13 pm
        by Max


        You are nuts bro!

        • Jun 30, 20129:16 pm
          by frankie d


          thanks for confirming something i’ve long suspected.  
          it eases my addled mind!

          • Jul 1, 20121:09 am
            by Max

            Frankie D,
            I could pick apart every team in the league, with the exception of OKC and SA to make the argument that their GM is totally incompetent but as I attacked each individual team, my arguments, like yours, would probably lack all sense of proportion because I would be in attack mode and wouldn’t be playing fair.   A mere 2 years ago, Dumars was being named as the GM of the decade in some circles.  Everything that has happened since, and some of it had already happened two years ago, has changed the national perspective on him and many fans of the team have changed their attitude towards him as well.  That said, people rightly thought he was a superior or elite GM for a very long time after the Darko draft and in my opinion, any fair minded person would never have criticized him for the Darko thing in the first place.   You can talk about laziness all you want but picking a consensus top 2 or 3 pick that anyone else would make in the same situation doesn’t require vetting a lot of sources because the entire basketball community is some kind of mega source that is more likely to be right about any given player than any single source’s opinion.
            I feel like it’s nuts, and do notice its relative rarity, to even still be discussing the Darko thing as some sort of reflection on Joe’s abilities as a GM and your whole diatribe just seems like a a lot of venom filled sour grapes to me because you have become anti-Dumars.
            And btw: most teams, and the Pistons were most probably among them, were keeping advanced stats before you or I had ever heard of advanced stats and were probably doing so before the phrase advanced stats had even been coined.   Hiring an expert at compiling such numbers has come slower but the idea that a given team never worked with advanced stats before hiring an individual to just do that job is simply and incredibly wrong.   Just about every team in the league keeps numbers and stats on things like deflections that we will never see.

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