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Sports Illustrated mock draft: Michael Carter-Williams to Pistons

Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated:

With Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond, the Pistons frontcourt is set. Detroit took Brandon Knight at No. 8 in 2011 but Carter-Williams, arguably the best pure playmaker in the draft, could be too good to pass up. The Shaun Livingston comparisons are easy to make — how many 6-foot-6 point guards are there to compare him to? — but two executives said they liked Livingston’s potential coming into the draft better. Still, Carter-Williams has superior point-guard instincts and if he can harness his size and improve his jump shot, he could develop quickly.

Mannix makes a very good point. Because we’ve seen so few tall point guards, Shaun Livingston is one of the few viable comparisons for Michael Carter-Williams, which means the comparison less likely to be accurate.

Still, I think Mannix, like most, overrates Carter Williams’ playmaking ability.

Carter-Williams played 40 games last year. Splitting those in half based on level of competition, as rated by KenPom, shows a pretty drastic difference in production.

  • Toughest competition: 4.9 assists and 3.8 turnovers per game
  • Easiest competition: 9.7 assists and 3.1 turnovers per game

Obviously, nearly every player pads his stats against weaker teams to a degree, but this seems particular jarring. Is Carter-Williams really a high-level playmaker, or did he just cement that reputation during the easier, early portion of Syracuse’s schedule? A more rigorous analysis could provide clues to that question, but on the face of it, I wouldn’t assume Carter-Williams projects as a good distributor in the NBA.

For comparison’s sake, here’s the same test applied to Trey Burke, who played against an overall tougher schedule:

  • Toughest competition: 6.7 assists and 2.6 turnovers per game
  • Easiest competition: 6.7 assists and 1.9 turnovers per game

86 Comments

  • Jun 17, 20139:48 am
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    I love the Kid…

    I know for many his shooting is a concern, but there are soo many dynamic pass-first or players that create offense for other players that have impacted the league.

    I still think Shabazz should be the first choice, … But if the plan is move Knight into more of the combo guard role, and if its to trade Stuckey it makes sense

    Also , Carter-williams is considered to be an elite athlete in this draft…Livingston was never that, if would be scarey if Carter williams ever got a jumper, within the next 2 years 

    • Jun 17, 201312:03 pm
      by NickB

      Reply

      Did you miss the part where he had an assist/TO ratio worse than Brandon Knight in his 20 tougher games? Essentially at this point we’re looking at an athlete who can’t create any offense for himself and struggles to pass well against decent college competition. What about this is appealing? Do you think that the NBA is going to be any easier than those college teams on him?

      • Jun 17, 201310:29 pm
        by I HATE FRANK

        Reply

        actually the nba might before easier… the floor is spaced more, and the talent of teammates is higher… its like you guys want the perfect player, and you believe guys get better

        • Jun 17, 201310:58 pm
          by NickB

          Reply

          I don’t have to have a perfect player, but MCW legitimately is bad to questionable at literally every NBA skill. He can’t shoot even a little, he can’t create any offense for himself, he turns the ball over a lot and struggles against decent competition, he hasn’t played a real defense in two years and will have to unlearn some bad habits taught by that zone defense, he’s skinny, he shrinks in big games…
           
          There are honestly no good qualities to this guy besides the fact that he’s tall for a PG.

          • Jun 18, 201312:31 am
            by tarsier

            Ok, that’s being too harsh. He is a good defender, he is a good distributor, and he is good at getting to the hole.

          • Jun 18, 20138:09 am
            by G

            Good at getting to the hole but bad at finishing when he gets there.

          • Jun 18, 20139:14 am
            by Crispus

            How will Stuckey feel if a rookie horns in on his bad drive-finishing monopoly?

          • Jun 18, 20139:18 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            “”I don’t have to have a perfect player, but MCW legitimately is bad to questionable at literally every NBA skill.He can’t shoot even a little,”"

            1. then people wonder why I ask , do you watch games… NBA skill is more than shooting the ball. Jason kidd couldnt shoot, Rondo couldnt shoot, Gary Payton for the first several year couldnt shoot. Shooting is the easiest NBA skill to fix or modify. Thats way its not a concern, Carter-Williams improved his shooting drastically from the start of the season to the end of the season.

             ”he can’t create any offense for himself, he turns the ball over a lot”"

            2. He broke down defensives often getting the basket or getting to where he wanted on the floor most nights, creating offense for himself would have been easy, he choose to create offense for teammates. When you are extremely unselfish, and you dont have a abundance of talent around you…you will turn the ball over…

            “”struggles against decent competition”

            3. just because they throw a little chart up there doesnt mean he struggles against decent competition…what were the Win/Loss record like? Quick without looking it up other than CJ Fair.. Name another Syracuse player? Burke played with way more talent than Carter-williams, it makes a deference.

            “he hasn’t played a real defense in two years and will have to unlearn some bad habits taught by that zone defense”

            4. Just because you play Zone it doesnt mean you dont/or cant play man to man defense, and actually the amount of steals speaks to his quickness, and defensive awareness.

            “ he’s skinny,”

            5. He has the same body type as Jamal Crawford….its not an issue

            “he shrinks in big games…”"

            6. Syracuse I think played more ranked opponets than any other team in the country…10-6 vs ranked opponets
             
            “There are honestly no good qualities to this guy besides the fact that he’s tall for a PG.”

            7 . you must have just watched the one game against michigan in the tournament, and based off of that one game. I agree … but before that ONE game he played 39 other games…just saying

          • Jun 18, 201310:46 am
            by NickB

            1. Shooting the ball isn’t nearly his only concern, and plenty of players continue to suck at shooting after years of work in the league. Easiest to fix? Maybe, but it’s certainly not something to count on. Some guys just suck at shooting and always will.
             
            2. He passed a ton because he couldn’t score for himself. Whenever he gets pressured by a defender he coughs the ball up (ended 25% of his possessions with a TO), but crappy teams didn’t pressure him much, so he used his long strides to run past them. Watch the Louisville games for evidence of this.
             
            3. Win-Loss does not have anything to do with how crappy MCW is. Other than Fair? Brandon Triche and James Southerland off the top of my head. Triche occasionally had to take over ball handling for MCW because he couldn’t handle pressure. Southerland was the designated outside shooter. Good PG’s get assists and don’t turn the ball over even with poor teammates. Consider what Jose Calderon did this year when he replaced Brandon Knight.
             
            4. He does have good quickness and awareness, but he was allowed to gamble regularly in ways he’ll never get away with in the NBA. Sitting at the top of that zone with a ton of long, tall guys behind him was a huge benefit for his defense. But even so, consider how many ‘cuse players in the NBA suck at defense? It’s not impossible that he’ll be a good defender, but we can’t be 100% sure he will be good, because he’s got to unlearn that blasted zone.
             
            5. Really? He’ll have serious issues ever finishing with that body, and he’ll get beaten to a pulp. Being that skinny never helped Austin Daye.
             
            6. Again, record=/=performance. Unless he got hot shooting, he was generally pretty bad.
             
            7. I watched them play UDM (more for Ray McCallum than MCW), Lville (twice), a bit of Cal, Indiana and Marquette (March Madness baby!), along with UM. I caught snipits of other games as well, but not much.

          • Jun 18, 201311:05 am
            by tarsier

            Since when is shooting the easiest thing to fix?

          • Jun 18, 201312:53 pm
            by I HATE FRANK

            Nick B – In March he played some of his best basketball…just saying 

            @Tarseir … Ask any coach, assistant coach, scout or assistant scout … Shooting is about form, technique and confidence. He is not a 7 foot C/PF learning to shoot jumpers for the first time…

            Everyone says defense and shooting are teachable …because it comes down to once again form technique, and confidence.

             

          • Jun 18, 20131:55 pm
            by Matt

            My biggest concern is that the Pistons are stupid. To us he will not be a 6’6 PG, he will be a 6’6 combo guard. Stuckey part 2.

          • Jun 19, 20131:59 pm
            by G

            If shooting is so easy to fix, how come guys rarely significantly increase their FT% over the course of their careers? 

      • Jun 18, 20136:41 am
        by Derek AKA Redeemed

        Reply

        The analysis of MCW reminds me of Tate George from UCONN back in the day.  Tate was a big game player who made key buckets, but wasn’t what you would consider a game changing scorer or a high assist guy.  His highest assist average was 6 per game (freshman year) which went down to 4.8 (senior year).

        Tate’s assist digressing southward each year appears to be a curious stat, if you just look at stats.  The thing with Tate is, his team got better each year.  They added SG Chris Smith who was a crafty scorer with sick ballhandling skills, Nadav Henefeld a point forward type who often ran the offense, and John Gywnn a six man who many compared to Vinnie the Microwave Johnson.  With this compliment of players his ballhandling duties dropped and his assists went down.

        I wonder if the same could be said about MCW?  Did the maturation of his teammates diminish his need to handle the ball as much and therefore rack up assists?  I don’t know.  Did Brandon Triche take the role of faciliator while the team used MCW’s athleticism for scoring? 

  • Jun 17, 201310:43 am
    by Vic

    Reply

    That’s why I like Burke way more than MCW. More overall skill, harder to gameplan against.

  • Jun 17, 201310:43 am
    by KillMovez

    Reply

    Shabazz please !!!!!!!!

    • Jun 17, 20138:01 pm
      by Who Is Us?

      Reply

      He has bust written all over him! He is an undersized SF and would be a reach at 8. Caldwell-Pope is a better shooter, can create off the dribble, is willing and capable defender, and most importantly, is the same height 6’6″, and plays SG! Right now most credible projections have KCP coming of the board within 2 picks of the Pistons and he has been rapidly moving up draft boards. His outside shooting and defense is exactly what the Pistons need out of this draft.
       
      Both MCW and Shabazz would be poor picks for a team in desperate need of defense and shooting. KCP provides both. If Joe D decides not to give Knight another shot at the point, there are better options than MCW (and Burke) who would come in an provide NBA level play at that position right away. As much as I dislike him as a player, if the season were to start tomorrow Jose Calderon and Brandon Jennings are both better NBA PG’s than anyone in this Draft.

      • Jun 17, 201311:08 pm
        by I HATE FRANK

        Reply

        Pope is being just a little overhyped… against top team POPE came off below average … PLEASE Do some research look at how he matched up against the other top SG/SFs during the season he often came up short… 

        I’m not saying he can’t or won’t get better, but he is turning into an urban legend… 

        • Jun 18, 201312:35 am
          by tarsier

          Reply

          And Shabazz did well against top teams?

          • Jun 18, 20139:19 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            way better than POPE

          • Jun 18, 20139:24 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            I posted this awhile ago,,,Numbers dont lie!

            http://www.pistonpowered.com/2013/05/hoping-for-anthony-bennett-debating-shabazz-muhammadkentavious-caldwell-pope/
             
            I tire of this Pope talk its mostly hype he was a BIG fish in alittle POND that could not swim with the BIG BOYS…Against Indinia, UCLA, Florida(twice),Ole Miss, ,Missouri, and Iona…all teams ranked or that made the NCAA Tournament  0-7… Pope averaged: 15.1ppg 39% 40% for 3?s….. Often its talked about him having a good team, he played in a barely decent conference and feasted off of horrible teams…
            Shabazz played again tougher competition all year, against Top ranked teams or teams that made the NCAA tournament. Georgetown, San diego st,Missouri, California(twice) Oregon, Arizona(Twice) … 6-3 Shabazz averaged 17ppg 45% from the field, 46% for 3?s

            Its Really Not Close, and sure you can say that they are allowed to focus on pope more, its a legit arguement.
            But Shabazz has had a bigger target on him ever since day one.

          • Jun 18, 20132:23 pm
            by tarsier

            For the sake of ease, I’ll equate top teams to ranked teams.

            Pope:
            14.4 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 1.8 apg, 1.6 spg, 38/39/77

            Muhammad:
            17.5 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 0.5 apg, 1.0 spg, 47/40/70

            I don’t see how that’s “way better”. Muhammad shot much better over that sample. But he was significantly worse in every other way. I’d put a slight edge to Shabazz over that sample, but not a huge one. Also, UCLA’s ranked opponents had on average a #14 ranking. Georgia’s on average, had a #9 ranking.

          • Jun 19, 20138:15 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            You guys are HYPOCRITS!…. There roles are SCORERS!  Shabazz Scoring barely drops off, his shooting percentage increases. It not a slight Edge, its a Huge difference, had that been Shabazz numbers that dropped off like that you guys would have had a field day… and his team WON!

            HYPRCRITS!, you guys are laughable…

            I cant be the only person that thinks this

          • Jun 19, 20139:46 am
            by tarsier

            Look, I even said Shabazz has the edge in that particular subset of games, just not a big one. Their roles are basketball players. Scoring is only one aspect of that. You’re determined to ignore everything else. Well it doesn’t work like that. Would you take Monta Ellis over Paul George or Rudy Gay over Josh Smith?

            Granted, right now, I would lean to drafting Muhammad over Pope. I think Pope will probably be the better player, because he is basically a sure thing to be a valuable role player whereas Muhammad could easily be somewhere in between Jordan Crawford and Monta Ellis. But Shabazz has the higher likelihood of being a star caliber player. And that is something the Pistons really need.

            But I will be very disappointed if either of these guys is the best player left on the board when Detroit is up.

        • Jun 18, 201312:50 am
          by gmehl

          Reply

          @I HATE FRANK I really wouldn’t be surprised if Joe picks KCP. With all the talk now of Cheeks mentoring Knight I think its a safe bet that Dumars goes with either KCP or Shabazz. The other thing to factor in was Dumars spiel about acquiring good character guys. IF he stays course with that then that probably eliminates Shabazz. Depending on who’s left with pick 38 I think he will look for a backup PG like Canaan or McCallum.

          • Jun 18, 20139:31 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            It we draft Pope im not gonna cry about it…

            Imma a loyal Pistons fan…

            But his talent level or ceiling is being a little overhyped.

            Shooting the ball is his skill, but lets not making him more than what he is Jamal Crawford without the handles, Roger Mason (more athletic in the open court), Jr Smith (whi currently cant get to the rim and finish)….

            He has defensive potential, but we need scoring folks…unless you believe he is going to beome a lockdown game changing defender…thats even being a little over hyped

        • Jun 18, 20136:06 am
          by oats

          Reply

          The worse a guy’s teammates are, the more he should be effected by good defenses. Georgia was a terrible team, and they had awful ball movement. It makes a ton of sense that he would struggle against good teams. Good defenses with only one guy to key in on should slow that guy down.
           

          • Jun 18, 20131:02 pm
            by I HATE FRANK

            I hear, and everyone agrees they were terrible … But if we was the player you guys are making him out to be he would have been dominate and he wasn’t (he only had a 5-6 game stretch even made his overall shooting look respectable). There was no system restricting him @ Georgia he did what he wanted. 

            Also Georgia played in a horrible weak conference, so I question the level of compeition he played against. I’d be more concerned than excited that he took soo many 3s… those many three means that you are settling PERIOD. 

            I’m not saying he can’t or won’t get better, I’m not even gonna say he won’t be a legit starter in the NBA. But just be honest about what he is …
             

          • Jun 19, 20136:17 am
            by oats

            1) I’ve been running the KCP bandwagon for awhile here, but I’ve never once said he was a star in the making. I’ve said his ceiling would be a fringe All Star type, but it is unlikely enough that it almost shouldn’t be brought up. I’ve argued many times that I think he’s basically Wes Matthews. I don’t think he’s that great, and I do think some of the more recent people have been overstating his potential recently. There isn’t anyone after the top 6 I particularly like. My top 6 is the common McLemore, Porter, Noel, Olapio, Burke, and Bennett group. I really don’t think there is a significant difference between my 7th favorite guy and the 17th guy in terms of talent. I also think that of those guys in that range, Pope is one of the better fits for the team. The team really needs 3 point shooting and defense, and Pope is a solid 3 and D guy. That’s enough to be my 7th favorite prospect for this team, despite the fact that Zeller has a slightly higher overall grade.
             
            2) Georgia wasn’t kind of terrible. They were really terrible. Pope put up more than 18 a game, the next leading scorer was under 8. Their leading assist man was under 3 game. He was responsible for a higher percentage of his team’s rebounding than Cody Zeller was. There is not a single player on that roster that looks likely to even make it to the D League at this point, although their bad point guard is young enough to have an outside chance of making it that far eventually. Given that Pope is basically a role player, no he should not have dominated good teams. Super star players dominate good teams with terrible talent around them. Pope is not a super star. He was expected to struggle a bit and he did. That’s fine. Despite UCLA having a ton more talent, he was pretty damn similar to Muhammad against that quality of competition. I’m just not seeing his play against bad teams as a significant problem because Georgia was really bad.
             
            3) Taking 3s is smart basketball. I’m not concerned that he settled for 3s because I want him taking 3s almost exclusively anyways. Again, he’s a role player. That is how I want him to play. I’d be concerned if I thought he was more than that. Honestly, I’m more concerned with his mediocre to poor shooting in catch and shoot situations. I’m hoping that’s because his team was exceptionally bad at passing, and if they were better that he’d have his percentage go up. It is possible that he’s just better at getting his rhythm going off the dribble, and the team is better off with a guy that is good at getting his shot off quickly. As far as I’m concerned, this is the argument for Muhammad over Pope. I still have Pope ahead of Muhammad because his defensive potential is much higher, but I get an argument that a guy that can score without dominating the ball is a better fit around Monroe.

  • Jun 17, 201310:53 am
    by Blocks by Dre

    Reply

    I agree with Dan on this one. I rather pass on MCW and take Burke, CJ, Bazz or even Zeller. MCW can’t shoot and while you can point out that Rondo can’t either, MCW is not the playmaker Rondo is, I can’t see it.

  • Jun 17, 201310:58 am
    by Huddy

    Reply

    The stats on numbers against good competition are pretty jarring.  Besides his playmaking the best part about him is his height because it puts him in a position to be able to guard SGs in the NBA, which is useful if undersized BK is staying at SG.  I just don’t see how MCW will be strong enough to guard SGs.  He would get bullied and backed down unless he put on a considerable amount of weight, which can be difficult for such thin guys.  If he is playing with BK on offense his athleticism will be less important because he will have NBA SGs guarding him as well…I don’t see him bringing any advantages to those match ups.
     
    I think MCW is a guys that will need a lot of development to be effective, which the Piston’s already have a lot of on their plate.  Jumper, adding size, adjusting to be able to guard SGs in the NBA…that isn’t happening over night.  A lot of the defense for BK I read say he was unfairly pushed into a big role and I can already see that as an excuse for MCW if he comes to the Pistons. 

  • Jun 17, 201311:33 am
    by zdh

    Reply

    ideally Burke will fall and the pistons take him. start Stuckey as the 2 with Burke, bring Knight off the bench, especially if Bynum bails. MCW can’t shoot, and he also has similar FT % to Rondo (not great for  PG). When you cant shoot and arent a great FT shooter either, that is a bad combo especially for a PG. Other teams will sag off him and it will be tougher for him to get the ball to monroe or whoever if his man is able to sag and roam on defense. Of course he could develop, but I really hope the Pistons dont draft MCW (or Zeller for that matter).

  • Jun 17, 201311:35 am
    by Tiko

    Reply

    we will regret not drafting KCP

    • Jun 17, 201311:53 am
      by Greg

      Reply

      Exactly what I´m talking about since day one! Perfect fit next to Brandon Knight. Cheeks was hired to make Knight the starting PG…if he doesn´t get it he will be moved to the bench or traded…if Knight becomes the PG we still hope he can become, then KCP and Knight both can shoot the 3 and play above average defense and thats all we need from our wings/PG, shoot and defend. 

      • Jun 17, 20131:45 pm
        by ryan

        Reply

        I also think that Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is the best choice. He brings legit size, shooting and rebounding with solid athleticism and defensive potential. I think he’s the best choice and he’d even allow us to keep Rodney Stuckey as our combo guard off the bench if we can’t find a buyer.

        Another thing that I like about KCP is that he doesn’t demand the ball to do his thing. We have several guys who need the ball and who can make plays so it makes sense to add one who’s got skills that don’t require him having the ball all the time.

        You start him and Knight with Middleton, Drummond and Monroe up front. Then you come in off the bench with Rodney Stuckey, Kim English, Kyle Singler, Kravtsov and Jonas Jerebko. That’s already much better and more balanced than last year and we have money to try to make more moves.

        • Jun 17, 20133:01 pm
          by Carl

          Reply

          KCP looks to be a good NBA prospect, but might be a reach at #8.  Shabazz looks to have a higher ceiling and possible star potential, which the Pistons need. 

          • Jun 17, 20138:04 pm
            by Who Is Us?

            Since the college season started no one has continued to believe that Shabazz is going to be an NBA star. He is the Danny Almonte of this draft. A year older than everyone thought which significantly reduces his upside, he can’t play defense, or create his own shot. Speaking of reach, Shabazz is now projected by nearly every draft expert to be drafted in the mid to late teens, well below KCP who is being linked most strongly to the T-Wolves 2 spots behind Detroit making him the bigger reach.

          • Jun 17, 201310:35 pm
            by I HATE FRANK

            LOL@Who is Us …. you need to really do your research most current reports (mock draft don’t always update ). have shabazz in the top 10 … could go as low as 5 to the sund and minnesota and Portland are extremely interested …

            He has been killing workouts.. Chris Mannix, just did an article about him talking about his rising stock, because he has answered everyones concerns..  

        • Jun 17, 201310:42 pm
          by I HATE FRANK

          Reply

          People talk up Pope but his game is soo flawed … not saying he or improve… and I’ve found some game footage, and scouting videos … ect …

          He is a talented shooter … He is not a scorer…because he has NO OFFENSE going towards the basket…he settles so much on long jumpers …. He has defensive potential, but physically he has limitations.

          At this stage no one is going to change anyones mind, but I’m still puzzled by some of you 

        • Jun 17, 201311:04 pm
          by I HATE FRANK

          Reply

          @ Ryan … “”Another thing that I like about KCP is that he doesn’t demand the ball to do his thing. We have several guys who need the ball and who can make plays so it makes sense to add one who’s got skills that don’t require him having the ball all the time.”"
           
          He took exactly … 0.6 less shots than Shabazz…. Took more 3 point attempts than 2 point attempts…. so yes he does need the ball to do his thing … Go watch the scouting report

          • Jun 18, 201312:19 am
            by Who Is Us?

            Shabazz is still and Undersized SF with a disinterest in playing defense.
            Even if one were to take what you are implying at face value, that KCP and Shabazz are essentially equal in terms of how they shoot and score. KCP still has the decided advantage.
            KCP:
            Above average height for the position.
            Very good NBA range.
            Above average defender.
            Elite quickness for position.
            High rebounding acumen and output.
            Ability to create his own shot.
            4 months younger than Shabazz with 1 more year of college experience.
            Shabazz:
            Good NBA Range.
            Below average height for position.
            Below average defender.
            Average to Below average quickness.
            Above average vertical.
            Long wing span.
            Good spot shooter, can’t create own shot.
            Virtually No right hand.
            Poor rebounder and passer.
             
            Shabazz has too much baggage, poor defensive effort, and is too short. If he were able to play SG like initial projections I would have less of a problem with him (although the disinterest he showed in playing defense at UCLA is a HUGE red flag for me). But a 6’6″ small forward who isn’t exceptionally quick is gonna struggle against taller faster competition at the NBA Level. Only two teams, the Kings and Cavs (not teams I would want to emulate), started a SF under 6’7″, Most teams trended towards 6’8 or taller. that means that on at least half the nights he played, Shabazz would be giving us 2″ or more.
            On the other hand, There would only be 4 SG’s that would be taller than KCP, meaning that against 25 opponents he is either equal are taller in height than the man across from him.
            Everything I’ve seen personally, and all that I’ve read, tells me that KCP is the better prospect and better fit for the Pistons than Shabazz.

          • Jun 18, 201310:04 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            “”Shabazz is still and Undersized SF with a disinterest in playing defense.
            Even if one were to take what you are implying at face value, that KCP and Shabazz are essentially equal in terms of how they shoot and score. KCP still has the decided advantage.”"

            1. Once again do research…at this stage Shabazz is being seen as a guy that will play SG…Like he has played most of his life except for last year at UCLA…Teams are currently saying because of his wingspan and body frame..if need he could also play the SF he is being called a G/F not a SF…

            KCP:
            Above average height for the position. – Shabazz is bigger, stronger
            Very good NBA range.- I agree
            Above average defender. – Derfensive Potential
            Elite quickness for position. – He has straight line speed Open court, but not change of pace speed huge differnce
            High rebounding acumen and output. – Shabazz much better offensive rebounder
            Ability to create his own shot. – thats hype, find me something that supports this? he takes tons of horrible shots doesnt take much to create those
            4 months younger than Shabazz with 1 more year of college experience. – Thats a wack arguement, NBA team dont care about 4 months. at the end of the Day Shabazz was still a freshman… who cared his team to the Tournament, POPE was a sophmore that barely got 15 wins

            Shabazz:
            Good NBA Range. - i agree
            Below average height for position. – his position is SG…perfect height and body frame
            Below average defender. – 6’11 3/4 Wingspan gives him defensive potential ( by all report he has surprised many with his defense at the workouts)
            Average to Below average quickness. – He just as fast as guys like Ben Meclemore, and Fast than Otto Porter in every speed drill at the combine, so for his height and weight he is considered to have Good speed and quickness
            Above average vertical. – Much better than Pope, so if he is above average pope is below Average
            Long wing span. – Switch gives him the Potential to become a better rebounder and defender than pope
            Good spot shooter, can’t create own shot. – He has been creating his own offense, he is getting comparisons to Harden and Manu. At UCLA he wasnt asked to create his own offense, but in workout he has proven he can create his own offense.
            Virtually No right hand. – Once again not true, its something he has to improve no doubt, but he has improved his right hand drastically
            Poor rebounder and passer. - 40 mins per-game hed average 7 rebs ….Pope in 40 min per-game would average 8rebs…(BTW: he was one of the best Non-PF/C Offensive rebounders in the country) so one less rebound makes him a poor rebounder? You dont know what his passing skills are because it wasnt what he was asked to do at UCLA
             
            “”Shabazz has too much baggage, poor defensive effort, and is too short. If he were able to play SG like initial projections I would have less of a problem with him (although the disinterest he showed in playing defense at UCLA is a HUGE red flag for me). But a 6’6? small forward who isn’t exceptionally quick is gonna struggle against taller faster competition at the NBA Level. Only two teams, the Kings and Cavs (not teams I would want to emulate), started a SF under 6’7?, Most teams trended towards 6’8 or taller. that means that on at least half the nights he played, Shabazz would be giving us 2? or more.
            On the other hand, There would only be 4 SG’s that would be taller than KCP, meaning that against 25 opponents he is either equal are taller in height than the man across from him.
            Everything I’ve seen personally, and all that I’ve read, tells me that KCP is the better prospect and better fit for the Pistons than Shabazz.”"

            Most of that is blah,blah,blah…. im fine if you like Pope…and im fine if you dont like shabazz on this team. but when you put the facts on the table, and if you took away the names…. No one..and I mean NO ONE With common sense would pick Pope over Shabazz.. PERIOD

          • Jun 19, 20136:52 am
            by oats

            First of all, Pope has great lateral quickness too. He was 3rd at the combine in the lane agility drill, the drill to measure that. He’s just not good at doing that with the ball. He’s too poor of a ball handler to effectively use that quickness on offense, and that is a large part of why he so often settled for 3s. Detroit has long maintained that ball handling is a skill you can improve with work, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they felt that it was more correctable than shooting. I kind of suspect Pope will never be a good enough ball handler to become a really good slasher, but his problem is not with his quickness.
             
            You can see his quickness on defense, the way he excels at jumping passing lanes demonstrates this skill really well. That’s also why he has a much higher ceiling than Muhammad defensively despite the shorter wing span. If you haven’t noticed, covering ground quickly is rapidly becoming one of the most important defensive skills, especially for perimeter players. This is a side effect of the Thibadeaux style of defense that is growing more and more prevalent each year. Teams require guys to cheat off their man to clog the paint, and then rapidly recover back out to 3 point shooters. The other thing that is often emphasized is jumping passing lanes. Part of sagging off their man when they don’t have the ball is that it places them in a position to jump in to passing lanes and deny entry passes to big men. Pope is already really good at this skill set, and he projects as being good at learning to close out on guys. Muhammad’s length does mean he has a bit less ground that he needs to cover to do these things, but Pope is still significantly better at covering ground and that is why his defensive potential is much higher than Muhammad’s. I should also note that while Pope does need some work in his man to man defense, he is still way ahead of Muhammad in this skill set.
             
            Last but not least, you are absolutely wrong about your closing statements. By all accounts, a lot of teams have Pope rated ahead of Muhammad. Minnesota and Portland have long been rumored to be more enamored with Pope than Muhammad, and they aren’t the only ones. Chad Ford has Pope rated higher, and while he is far from perfect, Ford is a decent talent evaluator. I also like to think I have some basketball knowledge, and I would take Pope ahead of Muhammad. I’d say most anyone that believes in the tier system has a chance of taking Pope over Muhammad. Most people seem to think they are on the same basic tier, so the question then becomes who is the better fit. If you need a volume shooter with limited skills outside of that then you take Muhammad. If you need a 3 and D guy then you take Pope. I have a 3 and D guy as a higher priority for this team, so that is my pick.

          • Jun 19, 20131:58 pm
            by Who Is Us?

            Frank, there is really no point in arguing with you since you seem convinced of your opinions. But you are definitively wrong about Muhammad’s position. He is a SF because of his bulk and lack of quickness. He’s an undersized SF, not a thick slow SG. Not sure where you are getting your info, must be from special insiders that all these writers/talent evaluators don’t have access to…
             
            http://insider.espn.go.com/nbadraft/results/players/_/id/19735/shabazz-muhammad
            http://www.cbssports.com/nba/draft/prospect-rankings
            http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/nba/photos/1305/best-draft-prospects-small-forwards/3/
            http://www.mlive.com/pistons/index.ssf/2013/06/detroit_pistons_2013_nba_draft_7.html
            http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Shabazz-Muhammad-6270/
            http://www.nbadraft.net/players/shabazz-muhammad
            http://hoopshype.com/draft.htm
            http://www.hoopsworld.com/nba-draft/top-100-nba-draft-prospects

    • Jun 17, 20138:04 pm
      by Who Is Us?

      Reply

      Its about time people started coming around on this kid.

  • Jun 17, 201311:54 am
    by Russell

    Reply

    Could it be that Syracuse shot a lower % in tougher games?  That would def put a damper on assist #s.  Also, missed shots that are fouled upon don’t get assists either.  In the Big East and post-season, there is a premium on sending young big guys to the line instead of easy buckets…especially Syracuse big men who suck at the freebies.  Just thinking.  

    • Jun 17, 201312:24 pm
      by Huddy

      Reply

      Maybe some what of a factor, but it is a considerable drop so I wouldn’t think it is the only factor.  I would also think that since generating assists includes getting open/good shots for people the PG should be getting the other players good shots against good teams, in other words teams with better defense lowering FG% shouldn’t impact a good PG getting his players better shots.  The lowered FG% should be more closely impacting contested shots and one on one drives.  I would expect slightly worse passing numbers, but not cut in half.

    • Jun 18, 201312:43 am
      by tarsier

      Reply

      It’s the PG’s job to make sure that they still get good shots, even against stiffer competition. He will face even tougher teams every single night in the NBA.

    • Jun 18, 20138:18 am
      by G

      Reply

      The low FG% argument is one that people have argued for years, but the reality is it has little impact on a single player’s assist total. In fact, the REVERSE is MORE true. Assists are what increase FG%. The PG’s job is to get the ball to teammates in spots where they have a better chance of making a shot, either on a cut, in the post, or off a screen. If Syracuse’s FG% went down in those games, it was likely a product of MCW not being able to get the ball to his teammates in good spots.

      • Jun 18, 20137:33 pm
        by KaBa

        Reply

        Well that is true to some extent, while it is the job of the PG to find the right guy at the right spot, the others still have to be there, they have to use the set screens properly, but that is not the case all of the time and not all of those players do shoot that well (just remeberd how Rip did do that in his prime, great). So, overall speaking drawing conclusions on a single stat is not really working and a dangerous thing to do. 

        • Jun 19, 20132:22 pm
          by G

          Reply

          The whole point of the exercise was to see how significantly MCW’s numbers dropped. I’m kind of “meh” on looking at the smaller sample size of “stats vs. GOOD competition”, but I get why they do it & it DOES tell us something.

  • Jun 17, 201311:55 am
    by Russell

    Reply

    ^for the record…I do not want MCW on this team.

  • Jun 17, 201311:56 am
    by Keith

    Reply

    I just don’t like MCW for this team. We are in need of shooters, and he can’t shoot. Even if we ignore his less than stellar assist numbers against tougher competition, we are talking about a player that simply does not score effectively. He is a terrible shooter from outside, a very poor free throw shooter, and he had trouble getting to the rim. It’s been noted before, but PGs who cannot score do not develop into starters, much less stars. The threat of scoring is as important as anything to overall impact. Guys that can just pass and passably defend become career bench players or cut altogether.

    MCW just hasn’t shown the ability to run a team effectively against tough competition, nor score at an even passable rate consistently. I would much rather take a chance on Burke’s lack of athleticism than MCW’s lack of NBA skills. For that matter, I would rather take a player who can fit into a specific role early and develop within himself (Shabazz/KCP as non-ballhandling shooter/finishers) than take a player who simply won’t do anything at a high level until he develops (MCW on a team that doesn’t develop talent well).

    • Jun 17, 201312:33 pm
      by Huddy

      Reply

      I don’t think it is impossible for a PG to be successful without high scoring, but the team would have to be right.  The Piston’s don’t have enough offensive weapons to justify putting a guy in a role like that.  Just distributing and playing solid D (which I’m not sold he can do in the NBA) might work on a team full of shooters or a team with 2+ all stars to get the ball to, but the Pistons need more out of this draft pick.  BK is constantly given the crutch that he doesn’t succeed because he doesn’t have anyone to pass to and yet somehow people think MCW will find people to distribute to?
       
      I think the comparison’s to Rondo also leave out an important factor for MCW on the Pistons, which is making up for BKs size on D.  Rondo may be primarily a passer and a good defender, but he isn’t asked to take on opposing SGs and has a good defensive team around him.  MCW would need to play alongside an undersized player and take on bigger stronger SGs.

  • Jun 17, 201312:43 pm
    by Thiago

    Reply

    If the PG cannot shoot, all the D has to do is stop Drumroe from receiving the pass. Unless you have a good shooter at the 2 (SHOOTING guard).I see no problem in having MCW as long as we have a new Rip Hamilton.Rondo would not be a star if he did not have KG, Pierce and Allen alongside him. We already have our KG, we “just” need our Pierce and our Allen. 

  • Jun 17, 201312:43 pm
    by RyanK

    Reply

    We are thin at every position.  This allows us to take whoever the best impact player is available; no matter his position.  Some of the bigs look intriguing to me.  Len looks like a guy who will either get his GM fired or make him look like a genius…boom or bust written all over him.

  • Jun 17, 201312:57 pm
    by tarsier

    Reply

    If the Pistons end up trading for the 13th pick, I’d be happy with any of Bazz, KCP, Zeller, MCW, Len, or McCollum there.

    At 8, I would not consider MCW or McCollum.

    If the Pistons did wind up with both the 8th and 13th picks, it would be super depressing if the top 6 were all gone by 8 and the 6 listed above rounded out the top 12 picks. 

  • Jun 17, 20131:40 pm
    by Jens

    Reply

    It might make sense to trade for 13 anyway, then package 8 and 13 to get Oladipo or Porter who are the guys we really Need from this draft.

    • Jun 17, 20133:04 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      I would not trade 8 and 13 for Oladipo. 8 and 37, sure. I might consider 8 and 13 for Porter.

      • Jun 17, 20133:59 pm
        by Filo Putz

        Reply

        MCW has excellent court vision; good handle and is 6’6″. Is he as good at this stage as Shaun Livingston pre-injury? probably not. But this a very weak draft where everyone in the top ten has flaws

        • Jun 17, 20134:10 pm
          by G

          Reply

          His handle isn’t that good, the main reason why his turnovers are so high. I don’t think he’s an NBA starter, and the Pistons need to draft a starter at #8.

          • Jun 17, 20134:37 pm
            by Filo Putz

            You must have been watching a different Michael Carter Williams.  He couldn’t possibly have averaged 7.3 assists without being a good ballhandler He is also very good good going to the rim both left and right.

          • Jun 17, 201310:34 pm
            by tarsier

            You don’t have to be a great ball handler to rack up assists. You have to be an able passer who handles the ball a lot. The difference between good and poor ball handling comes into play more in TOs, which MCW got in bunches.

          • Jun 17, 201310:46 pm
            by I HATE FRANK

            He probably averages 1 to per games by trying to do too much…

          • Jun 17, 201310:52 pm
            by I HATE FRANK

            Talking about his handles? Really? his handles ,his passing and ability to get to the lane are his strength but somehow …people here are saying he dont have good handles…weird …

            His turnovers come from being too unselfish, and trying to make something out of nuffin

             

          • Jun 18, 201312:10 am
            by NickB

            IHF, I don’t know what you’re watching, but MCW has poor handles. He loses control of the ball fairly easily, resulting in some of those turnovers, and he has basically no moves-no cross over, really unimpressive hesitation moves…the only way that he gets past a defender is by using his long stride to run past them (unless the defender is just bad at defense, which was often the case given the number of cupcakes Syracuse faced). Video Evidence: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ua2NcutmG10 and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DjWmGLoMu0&feature=youtu.be
            Fun fact: MCW turned over the ball on 26% of his possessions, and that’s against everybody, including the likes of  Central Connecticut State and Colgate.
             
            In case you didn’t read the article, let’s make it clear to you again that his passing numbers were terrible against decent competition, to the point where he had a worse Ast/To ratio (1.29) than Brandon Knight. Good teams realized that he couldn’t produce any offense by himself and sagged off him, and he couldn’t do a thing.
             
            As for getting into the lane, he won’t be nearly as good at it in the pros. Most mid-major college defenders had no chance of keeping up with his long strides, but that won’t be true in the NBA. Furthermore, even if he can get into the lane, he’s terrible at drawing fouls, and he can’t finish near the rim or in traffic, thus converting only 49% of his shots around the rim. If you didn’t know, that’s terrible.
             
            His turnovers came from more than that. He is a poor decision maker. He makes bad, extra, fancy passes, loses control of the ball while dribbling, gets it stolen from him regularly…he also has terrible shot selection and continued to shoot a lot despite being a terrible shooter.
            It showed up in his defense too sometimes, lunging at shot fakes regularly and going for steals and taking himself out of the play. His length and quickness allowed him to get plenty of steals, and he seems to have a knack for that, but in general he displays some poor BB IQ, making baffling decisions on a too-regular basis.

          • Jun 18, 201312:33 am
            by NickB

            Also, it’s worth pointing out how Syracuse players have not been doing to well in the NBA outside of Melo.
             
            It’s funny, but MCW is generally pretty similar to Lorenzo Brown, except Brown’s team disappointed and he’s a year older. Check it:
            MCW: 11.9 Pts 39FG% 7.3 Ast 3.4 TO
            Brown: 12.4 Pts 41FG% 7.2 Ast 3.5 TO
            MCW is .75 inches taller, 5lbs lighter, has .25″ longer wingspan and 1′ taller vertical reach. He’s basically a faster version of Brown, but without the hype.

          • Jun 18, 201312:47 am
            by tarsier

            I’d hesitate to say that Melo has been very successful. I know he’s only been in the league for a year, but he played just 36 minutes and had as many fouls as points.

          • Jun 18, 20138:37 am
            by G

            @ FRANK – yes, talking about MCW’s handles. Looks on the weak side to me. He’s fine when defenses are giving him a little space, but when they play up on him, he gives it up. He’s got a lot of the same kinds of problems Knight has. Knight’s handle is similarly questionable when defenses pressure him, he forces passes and makes bad decisions running the point. 

          • Jun 18, 201311:37 am
            by NickB

            One more stat on MCW: Only 31% of his shots came at the rim, which is not that good for a guy who supposedly is getting in the lane a lot. For comparison purposes, Ray McCallum got 45% of his shots at the rim.

        • Jun 17, 20134:37 pm
          by NickB

          Reply

          For all this talk of having good court vision, why is it that he performed so awful in those 20 tougher games? Keep in mind how weak the vast majority of Syracuse’s schedule was.
           
          As G mentioned though, he does not have good handles either. He’s basically got no offensive game besides passing the ball, but even then only against bad teams.

  • Jun 17, 20136:06 pm
    by Vic

    Reply

    Burke ran a pro style offense, a pro style defense, against big 10 comp, and had better results. 
    He got better on defense as time went by. He dominated offensively in many different ways: pick & roll, transition, drive & kick, outside shooting. he did all this with no consistent post presence and very inconsistent shooters. Yet he found a way to produce at a high level in every game.

    If the Pistons pass on him and on Nate Wolters, I’ll be a little annoyed.
     

    • Jun 18, 201312:48 am
      by tarsier

      Reply

      It’s highly improbable that two of the top six are available when the Pistons pick. So forget Wolters, if the Pistons pass on Burke period, that will be inane.

  • Jun 17, 20139:07 pm
    by Eddie

    Reply

    I personally hope that Burke falls and we can nab him at #8.  I see alot of Jameer Nelson in him (not big or overly athletic).  Not a superstar by any means, but a VERY solid starter.  My second choice would be CJ, as it sounds like he’s got a terrific stroke and just knows how to get buckets.  Either one of them and it’s a good draft in my eyes.  I saw several of MCW games (including his dud against U of M in the tourney) and I just don’t see a NBA starter…….now or down the road!

  • Jun 17, 201311:49 pm
    by Ryan Kelly

    Reply

    I do like mcw’s attitude but at pick 8 I rather go with another player.   No much rather go with another player.    Can’t shoot and high turnover pg?   I’ll pass.   Not to mention he was awful in the final four against Michigan.   Really he did next to nothing in that huge game.  Rather have cj McCollum than him. 

    • Jun 18, 201312:50 am
      by tarsier

      Reply

      I don’t like MCW either. But people have to stop making a big deal about the Michigan game. It was one game. It is almost totally irrelevant.

  • Jun 18, 201311:39 am
    by by key decisions know

    Reply

    If Detroit drafts MCW  FIRE Dumars right  on the Spot!!!

  • Jun 18, 201311:50 am
    by Matt

    Reply

    Think we’ll ever move a basketball team into the palace?

    • Jun 18, 201312:10 pm
      by jacob

      Reply

      If we get Burke, then trade for 13th pick and draft Shabazz. Maybe.

      • Jun 18, 20131:00 pm
        by Matt

        Reply

        We don’t play talented rookies, we let them grow roots at the end of the bench. Otherwise that plan might not be bad.

  • Jun 18, 20131:17 pm
    by jacob

    Reply

    Zeller to the pistons in the new mock on nbadraft.net.

  • Jun 18, 20132:10 pm
    by FireFrank

    Reply

    If pistons are looking for a PG they should take Dennis Schroeder a true point guard with size/length

  • Jun 19, 20138:22 am
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    @ NickB – Carter Williams did this against the same Press Later in the game

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wvDl3mgDmog

    once again, you guys talk like players dont get better…but even right now as is, physically for the PG position he is an elite player…his physical ability is considered elite…even if you question his handles..you cant dent the passing skills….

    He is one of the RARE talents in this draft, or any draft….PERIOD

    • Jun 19, 20132:32 pm
      by G

      Reply

      Now you’re going WAY too far. In a good draft he’d be picked in the 20′s. Does he have his good points? Sure, but I’ve never been impressed by what he does.

  • Jun 19, 20138:44 am
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    “”Last but not least, you are absolutely wrong about your closing statements. By all accounts, a lot of teams have Pope rated ahead of Muhammad. Minnesota and Portland have long been rumored to be more enamored with Pope than Muhammad and they aren’t the only ones”"

    1. Muhammad just killed both of those workout…Flip is calling Shabazz a ”Natrual Scorer” who can get his point in a variety of ways, He killed the Portland and Suns Workout, and by all Reports they were impressed with his all-around game, and his physically conditioning. I’ll post the link 

     ”"Chad Ford has Pope rated higher, and while he is far from perfect, Ford is a decent talent evaluator. I also like to think I have some basketball knowledge, and I would take Pope ahead of Muhammad.”"”

    2. Ford has targeted Shabazz since the age thing, Even at the combine Jay Williams & the other guy said something to Ford about people are grading Shabazz as a player, they are trying to find things wrong with him as a person. Jay Bilas, who is a 1000 times more respected than Ford said Shabazz is clearly a top 10 talent, and he is being undervalued because people want to find things wrong with him.

    “”I’d say most anyone that believes in the tier system has a chance of taking Pope over Muhammad. Most people seem to think they are on the same basic tier, so the question then becomes who is the better fit.

    3. I disagree Pope , is below Muhammad… But i do agree it will be which team thinks who fits

    If you need a volume shooter with limited skills outside of that then you take Muhammad. If you need a 3 and D guy then you take Pope. I have a 3 and D guy as a higher priority for this team, so that is my pick.

    4. Well, I value players with the ability to take over and be game changers. Shabazz physically has all the ability to be a good defender, and he has desire to be a great players. Scouts,coaches, executives have been impressed with every workout, work ethic and every interview since the combine. Physically in a few short months he has become more explosive, and increased his mid-range game (Which is still a question mark for POPE) he has shown he dribble pentrate (Which is still a question mark for POPE)…

    You guys are looking at mock drafts, and they are mostly for entertainment,

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