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3-on-3: Signing Josh Smith

1. How do you grade the Pistons’ signing of Josh Smith?

Dan Feldman: B-. Beyond Chris Paul and Dwight Howard, two players the Pistons had zero chance of landing, Josh Smith was the best free agent this offseason. Unfortunately – in part because he’s not an ideal fit with Greg Monroe and And Drummond – Smith won’t necessarily lift the Pistons to the playoffs. For a team that will lose its first-round pick with even minor improvements, that’s a big problem. Good for the Pistons for getting Smith, and watching them next season will be more enjoyable because of this signing. I’m just not convinced it advances the ultimate goal of contending for a championship.

Patrick Hayes: A. Are there fit questions? Are there cost questions? Absolutely. But the bottom line is, Smith was one of the top fourish free agents on the market. Joe Dumars did something many observers thought he couldn’t – entice a top-tier free agent to sign in Detroit. How Smith fits can be worked out later, but the Pistons, simply, need more good players, and Smith is a really good player.

Brady Fredericksen: B+. Does adding Josh Smith make the Pistons better? Yeah. Does Smith help alleviate two of the last season’s biggest weaknesses in rebounding and defense? Yes, it does. Dan’s outlined it before, but Smith’s positives outweigh some of the negatives like iffy shooting or concerns as a wing player. Whether or not you would have signed Smith, Joe Dumars almost had to. He had to either make a splash to improve the team or stand pat and see his time in Detroit likely end next summer. What else should he have done?

2. Can a Josh Smith-Greg Monroe-Andre Drummond front court work?

Dan Feldman: Yes, but it will be difficult. Maurice Cheeks will need to devise a defense that switches on pick-and-rolls and covers for Monroe. Offensively, it will be even more challenging. Smith will be in position to take a lot of long 2s, but those are terrible shots for him. Smith and Monroe pass well, and Smith and Drummond cut well, so there are some opportunities for creative solutions. Cheeks will really be earning his paycheck trying to make this work.

Patrick Hayes: Situationally, yes, at least defensively. Smith defends well enough to guard small forwards effectively. Offensively will certainly be a question. Smith playing heavy minutes at the small forward could encourage him to do the one thing – shoot long 2s – that is the obvious weak spot in his game. One thing he will bring offensively is good passing — as J.M. Poulard pointed out on Twitter, a high-low game featuring Smith and Monroe as high-post passers will be intriguing. Smith will also get plenty of minutes up front. Monroe and Drummond aren’t going to play 48 minutes each, so he could play next to Monroe or Drummond quite a bit as well.

Brady Fredericksen: In stretches. For a team that REALLY struggled from 3-point range last season, adding Smith isn’t going to solve any spacing issues. I can see where the Smith’s strengths compliment Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond, and I can envision lineups where Smith is really productive with either guy, but does that mean you signed a $14 million third big man? Or does that mean Monroe and/or Drummond will lose minutes now? It can work, but this product isn’t finished, yet.

3. Will the Pistons make the playoffs next season?

Dan Feldman: Probably not. The Heat, Pacers, Bulls, Nets and Knicks seem like safe bets. I’d put the Wizards, who played well once John Wall returned last season and should get only better next season, and Hawks in the next tier. After that, the Pistons, Celtics, Bucks, Raptors and Cavaliers are in the mix. So, that’s five teams vying for one spot. It’s easy to assess Boston, Milwaukee, Toronto and Cleveland from afar and say those teams have flaws, but their fans are doing the same about the Pistons. A one-in-five shot undersells the Pistons, because they might be better than Washington and/or Atlanta. The Pistons could also pass a top-five team or fall behind the 76ers, Bobcats and/or Magic, but the odds of either probably about cancel out. Let’s call this 35 to 40 percent.

Patrick Hayes: If they find a reasonably productive point guard, then yes. That could come via free agency (though with Jose Calderon, Jarrett Jack and Darren Collison now off the market, those second-tier point guard options are quickly disappearing), that could come through a re-signed Will Bynum (who is actually a great fit for a lineup that includes Smith and Drummond), that could come through Brandon Knight making some miraculous leap forward with his consistency, passing and ability to take care of the ball, it could come from Rodney Stuckey being rejuvenated by playing for his next contract and having a coach who, for some reason, really believes in him … OK, now I’m just getting silly. But you get the point. The Pistons have more talent than last year, a few playoff teams in the East lost significant pieces and, with most bottom-feeding teams already in tank-mode for the 2014 NBA Draft, the Pistons will be a decent bet to make the playoffs in the 6-8 seed range if they can get decent production from any point guard they happen to find.

Brady Fredericksen: Maybe. They’ve got other needs – ahem, point guard – they need to explore, but after the Eastern Conference’s top five teams — Miami, Indiana, Chicago, Brooklyn and New York — the last three playoff spots are wide open for the Pistons’ taking. I’m concerned the Pistons appear to be building a team on size during a time when the rest of the NBA is following the Heat’s lead and building around the small-ball style of play.

65 Comments

  • Jul 7, 20133:34 pm
    by Brigs

    Reply

    I understand that josh smith isn’t a good fit for the team but he certainly gives us many more options going forward. 
    i would would like to at least give it till the trade deadline and see if it can work, don’t forget that Charlie v and stuckys contracts will be worth a whole lot more at that point. I think we could get a great haul of players with those 2 plus monroe that could put us into that 3-6 seed range

  • Jul 7, 20133:42 pm
    by Jon

    Reply

    Isn’t Brandon Jennings a free agent?  Why aren’t we going after him?

    • Jul 7, 20134:41 pm
      by I HATE FRANK

      Reply

      because he is not a upgrade over Knight

      • Jul 7, 201311:26 pm
        by tarsier

        Reply

        Well he is an upgrade over Knight. But he’s probably not worth what he’ll cost. That’s the most important factor. If he could be had at a bargain, even if he was worse than Knight (because Knight was an average starting PG or so), it would be worth it to sign him as a backup.

        Always sign guys to good contracts. Never to bad contracts. Those rules are the most important. Fit matters too, but it is secondary.

  • Jul 7, 20133:45 pm
    by Otis

    Reply

    IMO After the last five years of this team saying (lying to its fans, if not itself) it’s one or two pieces away from being competitive, it’s finally come true. And all it took was landing a top free agent and instantly adding someone who’s in the conversation as our best player. I wouldn’t have traded away a first round pick to get this flexibility a year early, and I think the team would be better off with one more awful season, keeping its pick, and going after someone in free agency next summer. But given that there’s no backsies, this was the best conceivable outcome.
     
    One reason I love the Smith signing (and I’m not the only one who feels this way) is that he provides an insurance policy if it turns out that our two young centers can’t play together. Without a capable starting PF waiting in the wings (no pun intended) this team would be completely screwed if Moose and Drummond create as many problems as I think they will. The team would be sunk and likely have to move them in an act of desperation. With Smith, they can give them a chance and see how it plays out, and if trading Monroe makes the most sense they can shop wisely for the best deal. And if the addition of Smith (who spreads the floor nicely for a 4 but poorly for a 3) exacerbates our floor spacing problems, we can have him and Dre and Moose rotate at the 4-5. This gives us a lot of flexibility in a very risky situation.
     
    In case it wasn’t clear, I really don’t think Monroe and Drummond are half as compatible as the organization would have us believe. I don’t think there’s a good chance they can spread the floor enough to run an offense, and I think this puts us a trade away from a genuinely exciting team. Monroe for Rondo straight up makes sense to me and gives you a big three of Rondo, Smith and Drummond with plenty of spare parts.

    • Jul 7, 20133:55 pm
      by Jon

      Reply

      I like that trade scenario, but I don’t think Boston will give up Rondo for Monroe straight up.  I think if Monroe has an all star season next year it could happen.  But man that would be a sweet line up!  Here’s a pipe dream.  Monroe and Knight for Rondo.  Amnesty Charlie V. and sign Paul Milsap.

      Rondo
      KCP
      Smith
      Milsap
      Drummond
       

      • Jul 7, 20134:21 pm
        by David

        Reply

        Milsap signed with the Hawks on Friday  (2 years and 20 I think)

         

      • Jul 7, 20134:41 pm
        by Rodman4Life

        Reply

        Boston would LUNGE at Monroe for Rondo straight up!  

      • Jul 7, 201310:00 pm
        by Otis

        Reply

        If Monroe had an All-Star season, that means that whatever Detroit did was working, and they’ll be highly unlikely to trade him away for the one season Rondo has left on his contract. I’m operating under the premise that this trio of big men doesn’t look like a particularly good fit together. This is a trade I’d do asap, personally.
         
        At least it shouldn’t take too long to figure out how these pieces fit. No more crap excuses about “easing Drummond in” or whatever. Throw ‘em into the fire and see how they look. But most importantly, they can’t be stubborn if the rotation looks like crap. They need to be proactive and get the right pieces in place.

    • Jul 8, 20132:26 am
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      Good points, Otis, but I also think there’s a chance Monroe and Drummond could form a good pairing and Smith keeps them from doing that. It’s very possible they’d be good with a shooting small forward and not with a player like Smith.

      That alone is not reason to pass Smith, but it’s a downside.

  • Jul 7, 20133:49 pm
    by David

    Reply

    I’d take Atlanta out of the tier ahead of the Pistons.  They’ve lost Smith and Zaza and I’d guess they’re going to tank next season anyway. And the Celtics won’t be competing for a playoff spot.

    As for the the criticism that the Pistons building a big team in an NBA going small ball. Let’s look at the top 5 in the east:
    Heat: ok, small ball
    Pacers: Hibbert and West inside can’t be called small ball
    Nets: Lopez, KG, and Pierce aren’t playing small ball
    Chicago: Noah and Boozer and Deng aren’t playing small ball
    Knicks: When they manage to get Melo at the 4, ok. But they just traded for Bargnani, and still have Chandler and Amare on the team. Hard to argue they’re going all in on small ball 

    What about in the West?:
    OKC: They can do it, and sometimes do it. But they still run a lot of lineups with KD at the 3, Ibaka at the 4 and Perkins or Collison (and they just used their 12th pick on a C). So not that small
    Clippers: DeAndre Jordan and Blake Griffin aren’t all that small. And its not like Doc is known for playing small 
    Spurs: Duncan, just resigned Splitter. They go small sometimes. But not all the time.
    Memphis: Z-Bo and Marc Gasol
    Rockets: Just went out and got a serious center they’ll want playing quite a lot of minutes. Hard to see too many small lineups.
    Warriors: Definitely the most all in on small ball out west. But they still have Bogut and Lee.

    So… HUGE trend in the NBA? Or is it just that small works when you have one of the best 2-way forwards in the history of the NBA?

    • Jul 7, 20133:57 pm
      by Max

      Reply

      Thank you David.   The Miami Heat are the only team in the history of the league to accomplish anything playing small ball.   3 out of the 4 teams in the conference finals last year featured 3 of the biggest frontlines in the entire league.   The only reason anyone in the NBA has even entertained the notion that it’s not a big man’s game anymore is due to the current drought of truly great centers—there hasn’t been one since Shaq slowed down.   Some say it’s the age of the point guard now but if two thirds of the league has a point guard who is worthy of stardom don’t they cancel each other out?   Big men are rarer than ever these days but even without the great quality bigs they are still the biggest indicators of success unless you have LeBron James.   

      • Jul 7, 201310:10 pm
        by tarsier

        Reply

        “Some say it’s the age of the point guard now but if two thirds of the league has a point guard who is worthy of stardom don’t they cancel each other out? ”

        Perhaps, but it makes it all the worse not to have one. 

        • Jul 7, 201311:21 pm
          by Max

          Reply

          Dude, you’re right but it has nothing to do with my point and I wasn’t talking about the Pistons but rather the relative values of small ball and big ball.   You do know I was incredibly upset when Burke wasn’t drafted and don’t like the idea of Knight getting the opening night point guard duties by default.   I’m with you on the Pistons at PG.   I will say though that the number of good point guards in the league means it shouldn’t be too hard to acquire one moving forward.  

          • Jul 7, 201311:32 pm
            by tarsier

            The relative merits of small ball, big ball, traditional ball are very meh to me.

            That’s something to worry about with regard to what tweaks you make once you’re fielding a contender. Until then, it’s about putting together a lot of talent, preferably with the correct, complimentary skill sets. Shooting and defending are among the most valuable skills because they give the least diminishing returns as a team loads up on them.

            The NBA keeps changing and there just aren’t that many championships. So assessing the likelihood of winning a championship with a particular play style is going to be pretty tough. But, by and large, the more talented team has better odds of winning, no matter the style.

          • Jul 7, 201311:34 pm
            by tarsier

            I didn’t want Burke because he’s a PG. PG is probably the easiest position to get a good player at. I wanted him because he was hands down the best prospect remaining (not to be confused with the player remaining who will have the best career).

          • Jul 8, 20132:16 pm
            by Max

            In terms of the relative values of small ball vs big ball, small ball has resulted in one championship in over 60 years and big ball has resulted in all of the rest.   So style does matter.  

          • Jul 9, 201310:22 am
            by tarsier

            I’m afraid you’re wrong there:

            1) Most championships have been won by a fairly traditional lineup, not erring on the side of big or small.

            2) The NBA changes enough over time that it is really hard to draw many conclusion just by looking at who won championships (there are never that many before the style changes fairly dramatically). It makes more sense to see who has done well in general.

            3) Did you miss that Miami is a repeat champion? That’s two right there. And last season, they started going on a tear with the move of LeBron to PF and the eschewing of a traditional C.

            4) How many historical small ball teams have there been? I might as well say teams coached by Popovich have won 4 championships in NBA history while teams not coached by him have won all the rest. So clearly you don’t want him as your coach.

            5) I would rather have a more traditional lineup. i think it is easier to get all the complimentary skill sets that you need by doing so. But having more talent is way more important than fitting some conventional mold. 

    • Jul 7, 20134:03 pm
      by Jon

      Reply

      I think he was talking about the good teams that play small ball.  Nuggets, Golden State, Clippers, Miami, Oklahoma, etc.  Those teams all play small ball and small ball often and are successful at it.  And when those teams play teams that are bigger down low they have problems.  Miami had problems with Indy(without Granger), Chi(without Rose), and even the grandpa spurs.  And managed to win it all because they are the super friends of the nba. Big ball presents many obstacles for small ball.  lol

      • Jul 7, 20134:21 pm
        by Huddy

        Reply

        Clippers don’t at all.  Golden state starts David lee and bogit.  Nuggets don’t start small.  

        • Jul 7, 20134:40 pm
          by David

          Reply

          Exactly. For most teams, small ball works as a line up you run out in certain situations when you have the right players. But its not really a “trend” and its certainly not a reason to build a small team because small teams like the heat have serious issues scoring against a big front court that can protect the rim.
           

    • Jul 7, 20134:42 pm
      by oats

      Reply

      Replacing Smith with Millsap isn’t exactly a big drop off. Zaza isn’t exactly a big loss either. They also spent a decent amount on Korver, which makes no sense for a team trying to tank. So what is the assumption that they’ll tank based on?

      • Jul 7, 20135:17 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        I actually think Zaza is a pretty big loss.  I’m sure Horford is pissed about it since he hates playing center.  

      • Jul 7, 20135:25 pm
        by I HATE FRANK

        Reply

        @Oats I have grown to respect your way of thinking…but there is a huge drop off between milsap and Josh Smith … Josh Smith is way more dynamic player ….and he has more take over game ability

        I’ve seen them both play at their best…Josh Smith has been at all star levels soo many times…its not really close 

      • Jul 7, 201310:13 pm
        by tarsier

        Reply

        The big question for Atlanta is whether they retain Teague.

        • Jul 7, 201310:40 pm
          by I HATE FRANK

          Reply

          Pistons have no interest in Teague….

          Pistons are not going replace Knight with a similar style of PG…. If they replace Knight it will be for major upgrade…like Rondo

          I know many of you think Teague is a major upgrade but he isn’t… He became a good PG over time… 2 years ago many people called teague a bust…

          • Jul 7, 201311:23 pm
            by tarsier

            “Pistons have no interest in Teague….”

            link?

            “Pistons are not going replace Knight with a similar style of PG…”

            Teague is not a very similar style. He is a good passer who can take care of the ball. He’s not as big and strong, not as good at drawing fouls or rebounding, but much better at being a point guard.

            “He became a good PG over time… 2 years ago many people called teague a bust…”

            And that is relevant how? He became a good PG. I don’t care if he started as one or not. He is one now. I know your point is that Knight could do the same. Well I would rather have someone who is a good PG than someone who could become one. Even better, have both. If Knight does become good, one of them can be traded.

            Also, Teague was always better at passing and taking care of the ball (you know, the main things PGs have to do) than Knight. He just didn’t get on the court much for two years. Knight has been gifted a ton of playing time but has yet to play well. That’s not to say he can’t get there. I hope he does. But thus far, he has been arguably the worse starting PG in the league both seasons (except for when another team had their starting PG out injured).

          • Jul 8, 201310:44 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            “Pistons have no interest in Teague….”link?”

            1. Exactly my point where is the link? You and other have been talking about it since the start of the offseason, and I have never heard him linked to the Pistons. The Pistons didnt draft either Burke or Carter-williams, they basically let Calderon walk for 7.25  Mil, you never heard the Pistons linked to Jarrett Jack, Devin Harris or Darren collinson …outside if message boards…All of that would lead me to believe the Pistons are not looking for a PG outside of a High-Caliber PG… namely Rondo …. (which im fine with)

            “Pistons are not going replace Knight with a similar style of PG…..”Teague is not a very similar style. He is a good passer who can take care of the ball. He’s not as big and strong, not as good at drawing fouls or rebounding, but much better at being a point guard.”"

            2. I didnt say VERY similar I said similar style, Like Knight Teague was known as a scoring PG coming into the NBA, like knight Speed and sneaky athletism is there gift, like knight they are not going to make average players better, but they can get the ball into certain spots. Teague takes care of the ball? he averaged more TO’s than Knight did….

            Wanna know a HUGE difference between the two?

             Teague played with Al Horford who shot around 42% from 10 to 16+ Feet (made 216)  vs Greg Monroe who shot 31% from 10 to 16+ feet (only made 60)

            How about Josh Smith Vs Maxiell? wanna guess who shot better

            How about Floor Spacers? Kyle Kover vs Singler, and Stuckey combined? Korver made 189 3′s shot 46% …. Stuckey and Singler COMBINED made 125 3′s and shot until 34%

            but lets look pass that….
            “He became a good PG over time… 2 years ago many people called teague a bust…”"And that is relevant how? He became a good PG. I don’t care if he started as one or not. He is one now. I know your point is that Knight could do the same. Well I would rather have someone who is a good PG than someone who could become one. Even better, have both. If Knight does become good, one of them can be traded.”"

            3. POTENTIAL Makes it Relevant PERIOD…at the end of next season Knight will be 22, and Teague 26… Knight physically can do more than Teague, Knight is also a better man to man defender and pick and roll defender than Teague. Teague is not leaps and bounds better than Knight, and he not putting up numbers than Knight cant duplicate …you are overvaluing Teague…
            “”Also, Teague was always better at passing and taking care of the ball (you know, the main things PGs have to do) than Knight.”"

            4. Recap…He averages more Turnovers, and he played with players that could actually shoot the the ball…. (you know the main thing PG’s Need)

            “”He just didn’t get on the court much for two years. Knight has been gifted a ton of playing time but has yet to play well.”"

            5. Im a terrible system, with a terrible coach, and not with one player that could knock down a mid-range or open 3 ball consistently…

            “”That’s not to say he can’t get there. I hope he does. But thus far, he has been arguably the worse starting PG in the league both seasons (except for when another team had their starting PG out injured).”"

            6. He has been a legit 3 point shooter, Legit Defender, and he plays hard…Knight struggle and lack of improvement this year came from a terrible system, and a VERY,VERY unbalanced line up, and a horrible head coach… how you can continue to ignore these factors are beyond me…

          • Jul 9, 201310:02 am
            by tarsier

            2) Last year, Atlanta shot 46.4% to Detroit’s 44.9%. The previous year it was 45.4% to 43.8%. So even if we take your side of the chicken-and-egg debate (that it’s the player’s job to shoot well and get the PG assists rather than the PG’s job to set up the players to get high percentage shots), that shooting differential accounts for a 3% edge to Teague on assists. And that’s still ignoring that the difference isn’t as big as it looks because a decent chunk of that is just the fact that Teague shot better than Knight. So we’ll bump Knight’s assists from 4.6 per game to 4.7. Yeah, Teague’s 7.2 still blows him out of the water.

            4) And yes, passing more will result in more TOs. That is inevitable. but ti is usually worth it. Even so, Teague takes better care of the ball. He turns it over on a lower percentage of possessions. He just holds the ball more than Knight does (because he is better at taking care of it) which results in ever so slightly more TOs per game.

            And I’ll amend my statement from “their styles aren’t very similar” to “their styles aren’t similar”. Knight plays like a combo guard (regardless of which position he is being slotted at). Teague plays like a traditional point guard. I don’t quite see how you call a guy who averages 14.2 ppg and 7.2 apg a “scoring point guard”.

            1) I didn’t claim they are interested in Teague. Merely that they should be. While he did it with Smith, Dumars rarely shows his cards. So if you’re claiming they have no interest, the burden of proof is on you. Also, you then claimed they have no interest in PGs except Rondo. Where is your info that they have any interest in Rondo? That is just as speculative as every other possibility. But, my point here is not to say anything about who they are or aren’t pursuing. I’ve long since given up hope in Joe’s competence. So instead I’m talking about who a smart GM running the Pistons would be pursuing.

            3) So let me get this straight, you are saying you would rather have someone who might one day be a good young PG than someone who is a good young PG? Also, you never addressed the fact that signing Teague would not cost the Pistons Knight anyway. You act like it’s an either/or. They have Knight either way. It’s just a question of whether or not to also have Teague.

            5) How was this roster imbalanced? It wasn’t very good, sure. But it was a fairly traditional roster with the exception of lacking a PG who can pass and take care of the ball. With that lone exception, take an average NBA roster, make it 25% worse, and you have the Pistons of the last couple years.

            6) Knight turned into a solid defender in his second season. That’s the main reason I don’t want to give up on him. And he has been, since coming to the league, a slightly above average 3 point shooter. Those are nice skills to have, but it would help if he also knew the first thing about being a PG. So he had a bad coach. Boo Hoo. Lots of players do. The good ones make it work anyway. And it’s not like Frank is some sort of contender for worst coach of all time. He’s just another run of the mill bad coach. He has decent game plans, he just doesn’t know how to adapt.

    • Jul 7, 20134:45 pm
      by Brady Fredericksen

      Reply

      I’m not going to go look up the successes of Team X’s lineups, but I’d feel very comfortable saying Miami, OKC, NYK, GSW (who were FANTASTIC with Harrison Barnes at PF in the playoffs) were really, really dangerous with smaller, faster lineups that featured a lot of shooting threats. Clips are an anomaly, mostly because they can’t play their big boys together in the fourth quarter since they’re such poor FT shooters and Jordan is just useless offensively aside from lobs.

      I’d probably add Houston to that small-ball list this year, too, because a lineup consisting of Dwight-Parsons-Garcia-Harden-Lin looks pretty appealing, IMO.

      Your Memphis/SA are exceptions to the rule, of course. But there aren’t many teams that have GREAT big men like them. You’re extremely naive to even compare Monroe-Drummond, etc to Gasol-ZBo or Duncan (not Splitter).

      Of course, small ball’s main requisite is having a versatile, scoring SF at PF. It’s not like a manic craze that’s overtaken the entire NBA — but at the same time, it’s still new and it’s not something that coaches are just going to shoot down as a dumb idea going forward.

      • Jul 7, 20135:07 pm
        by Huddy

        Reply

        what’s the point of this argument?  Most of the small ball defenders on here are describing tteams like OKC GS DEN HOU that all START big and mix in small ball sets.  Lee starts over Barnes Durrant starts at SF etc.  How are the Pistons incapable of competing with this when Drummond is uber athletic, Smith is very athletic for the PF position, KCP has the size to run at SF…the starting line up isn’t that key to running with small ball teams.  On the flip side teams like SA Memphis and Indy have success reducing small ball effectiveness with bigs.  Sure Monroe/Drummond isn’t Tim Duncan or Gasol, but they are also 19 and 24 and production-wise not that far off. 

      • Jul 7, 20135:15 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        Going back to George Mikan, the Heat are the only team that has ever won a championship while playing any degree of small ball and even the Heat would have been a better team if they had not.   They had an easier time winning the title the year before when they started Joel Anthony.   None of the teams you mentioned other than the Heat start small ball lineups and most of them were better at the times they did not.  Small ball is stupid and doesn’t work.  

  • Jul 7, 20134:02 pm
    by Max

    Reply

    Reading that Denver and Atl want Monta Ellis now.   This possibly makes Teague available and the Nuggets are shopping Andre Miller to create room for Ellis.   Obviously Teague would be great but I’d be extremely happy to use the cap space on Miller if Teague isn’t possible.  

  • Jul 7, 20134:17 pm
    by Russell C

    Reply

    I think they make the playoffs next season even with the current team. They do it just to shut up certain critics and they do it because they will be a match up nightmare for most teams on offense along with having a defense that can be as good as Chicago, Indiana, and Miami.

    • Jul 8, 20132:27 am
      by Dan Feldman

      Reply

      So the Pistons missed the playoffs the last four years because they didn’t care about shutting up “certain critics”?

  • Jul 7, 20134:25 pm
    by Matt

    Reply

    Miami did awful against bigger teams. You can beat them playing big. Chicago did well until they were pulling fans out of the stands to fill the roster. Indi took them to game 7. That works well for our future. These small ball teams are fine but they have weaknesses our 3 bigs can exploit. Thing is though can we score enough? Can we sign a Rocco Belinelli or Gary Neal for a 3 point threat or Nate Robinson for some fast offense? We saw it with Chi, Indi, and Memphis, when it counted they couldn’t score. I like that big defensive mold though. I believe to beat Miami that’s your best bet. I think Cory Brewer would be a good player to look at as a perimeter defender. That way we can shift to a great defensive unit.

  • Jul 7, 20134:34 pm
    by angry little man

    Reply

    Is Josh Smith a good fit ? yes I think so, I also think he’s better then Mornroe.  The Pistons need  three  more pieces before they make some real noise in the east. Number one the point position, can BK improve ? I think he can, its just that he took a step back last season but then everyone on the team took a step back last season. Two they need a slasher that can drive and kick out and make teams pay for stacking the inside, which opposing teams will undoubtedly do with our suddenly formidable front line. Jermemy Lin ? maby ?

    Lastly we need a marksman, a guy that can make the open shot when teams collapse on our bigs, is Pope the man for the job ?  

    I’m excited about the upcoming season but there is still plenty of work to be done,and plenty of questions.     

  • Jul 7, 20134:41 pm
    by MrBlockedShot

    Reply

    Let’s go for Teague or Jennings, both would be an upgrade at the PG spot. Amnesty CV or trade him along with Stuckey and get a SF with range and sign Brendan Wright. Should this happen we would get a playoff team, and even a shot at making it to the second round. Is there any reasonable chance at getting Teague or Jennings ? What do you think guys?

  • Jul 7, 20134:45 pm
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    Top Teague 4 years to develop and every one wants to throw money at him, Knight will only be in his 3rd year and people want to give up on him… Only Piston Fans

    • Jul 7, 20134:52 pm
      by oats

      Reply

      Teague showed more of an aptitude for the position as a rookie than Knight has shown so far.

    • Jul 7, 201310:19 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      There’s a difference between wanting to give up on someone and hedging your bets on him.

      Also, yes, I would rather have a guy who has developed than a guy who might develop. Wouldn’t you? Just like I’d rather have a guy who might develop than a guy who is beyond hope of developing.

      It seems really obvious to me that a sure thing beats a maybe beats a sure nothing. 

      • Jul 7, 201310:47 pm
        by I HATE FRANK

        Reply

        Only if a huge difference…and the Price tag worth it

        • Jul 7, 201311:14 pm
          by tarsier

          Reply

          Knight:
          13, 3, and 4 on 41/37/73 with 1.48 AST:TO, 0.88 blk+stl

          Teague:
          15, 2, and 7 on 45/36/88 with 2.52 AST:TO, 1.81 blk+stl

          That’s a huge difference. The point about price tag is valid. I wouldn’t offer Teague $12M/yr. But I’d give him maybe $9M annually. Knight may be better value right now, but that only lasts two more seasons. More importantly, it’s not about choosing between them. Signing Teague would not cost the Pistons Knight. And it’s not like those advocating trading Knight are saying to trade him away for nothing.

    • Jul 7, 201310:27 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      Seriously, Teague is pretty much what we hope Knight will be at that point. Why wouldn’t you rather have that than a long shot chance that it might happen?

      • Jul 7, 201310:44 pm
        by I HATE FRANK

        Reply

        Teague didn’t even show promise until his 3rd year…and he played for a better coach, with more talent around him…

         

        • Jul 7, 201311:03 pm
          by tarsier

          Reply

          That’s not exactly true. But even if it were, who cares? If Desagana Diop were better than Kevin Durant in middle school, would that matter to you?

          What matters is where players are at now. Just because Player A had to take a bigger leap to reach a certain level than Player B has to doesn’t mean Player B is likely to surpass Player A. Because that improbably large leap be Player A has already been taken.

          • Jul 8, 201310:56 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            PERFECT EXAMPLE!!!

          • Jul 9, 201310:12 am
            by tarsier

            So come up with a better one.

        • Jul 8, 201310:01 am
          by Huddy

          Reply

          You are confusing “didn’t show promise” for didn’t get minutes.  You watch enough Atlanta Basketball to assess how Teague was showing promise in 10 mpg?  His two years with starter’s minutes he has improved greatly year to year and is a very capable starting PG with upside.

          • Jul 8, 201311:12 am
            by I HATE FRANK

            Your right…knight was throwin into the fire …

            First year… NBA lockout, No Summer League, no real training camp… No mentoring…btw; Terrible coach, and horrible starting line-up outside of Monroe, … He split PG duties with Stuckey,Ben Gordan and Prince (Great situation)…oh and we want you to become more a pass-first PG, than being the scoring PG you’ve been for the past 10 years…

            Second Year….. His starting line-up consisted of Monroe, Maxiel,Prince, and Singler (YUP FOUR FOWARDS!) Only Prince showed the ability to consistently knock down a open shot, everyone else struggled shooting the ball… (PERFECT SITUATION) for a Scoring PG, learning to be a pass-first PG….

            All I have ever said was give the kids a balanced line up … once again… Knight is not a PG that going to make the players around him better(not many PG do that anyway), but he is capable running a offense with the right players around him

          • Jul 8, 20131:00 pm
            by Huddy

            None of that is related to Teague…my point was it isn’t valid to say Teague just became productive when minutes were a big factor.
             
            The Pistons need to sign another player so with how locked up the Forward and Center position is at the moment what position should be look at…PG/SG.  With Teague on the team the Pistons would have a proven starter and BK would move to a 6th man role focusing on scoring, which you claim is his best attribute anyway.  he would give the team effective shooting, D, and quickness off the bench at both PG and SG.  All of this is on top of the fact that you continuously harp on Knight being thrown in the fire starting…well heres his chance to adjust slowly while a more proven player starts. 
             
            All the excuses for why Brandon doesn’t thrive and why he will get better are unrelated.  Getting Teague doesn’t mean giving up on Knight…especially since you keep saying he has been given too much responsibility.

          • Jul 8, 20132:07 pm
            by I HATE FRANK

            “”None of that is related to Teague…my point was it isn’t valid to say Teague just became productive when minutes were a big factor.”"

            1. It is Valid, He couldnt beat out Bibby or Hinrich in his first years….his faliures were hidden
             
            “”The Pistons need to sign another player so with how locked up the Forward and Center position is at the moment what position should be look at…PG/SG.  With Teague on the team the Pistons would have a proven starter and BK would move to a 6th man role focusing on scoring, which you claim is his best attribute anyway.  he would give the team effective shooting, D, and quickness off the bench at both PG and SG.  All of this is on top of the fact that you continuously harp on Knight being thrown in the fire starting…well heres his chance to adjust slowly while a more proven player starts.”"

            2. Its the same arguement, but if the Pistons wanted to make that move…then they would have drafted a PG… Or signed one of the many avaialble PG’s….Teague is being overvalued based off of one year…Hence he is still looking for a deal…
             
            “”All the excuses for why Brandon doesn’t thrive and why he will get better are unrelated.  Getting Teague doesn’t mean giving up on Knight…especially since you keep saying he has been given too much responsibility.”"

            3. No, I clearly said Only an ELITE! PG in the past two year would have made a difference with the lack of talent we put on the floor, and that our line up has been horrible…I said give Knight a chance with a balanced roster….Jose Calderon ast took a hit as a Piston, and In the same small sample Knight became the Pistons best perimeter player…

          • Jul 8, 20133:00 pm
            by Huddy

            With only 1 high draft pick it is a ridiculously poor argument to say if the Pistons wanted a new PG they would have drafted one…too many holes to say that every position we didn’t draft means the team is already perfect there.  “the many available PGs”-another great stretch…you must mean Jack, Collison, or Jose..two of whom are back up quality.
             
            So you brought up throwing Knight into the fire after I mentioned Teague starting his career off the bench and you didn’t mean that Knight shouldn’t have been thrown into a starting role?..unlikely.
             
            You admit he isn’t the kind of PG that makes others better and that he is score first…you think he was the best perimeter player once Jose came on…and you still think it is a terrible idea to play him off the bench so he can play both spots?  Why?  Its like you are arguing that he is a passable PG on a good team with great Scoring SG skills…but there is no way he should every be moved from the PG job.  What is so horrible about a 6th man role for him?  Lots of teams would love a guy to come in an have an offensive impact like Lou Williams or the Jet without giving up on the defensive end and Knight could be great at that.  That is in no way giving up on the kid.

  • Jul 7, 20134:49 pm
    by angry little man

    Reply

    I dont think management will eat CV’s contract by amnestying him, obviously what they tried to do is unload him/his expiring contract for a player. I love the way Joe tried to dump Stucky and CV for Gay but unfortunetly it didn’t work out. I dont think this is the last we’ve heard about CV and Stuck moving on …….

  • Jul 7, 20136:58 pm
    by Grizz

    Reply

    Am I the only one who sees Smith, Dre, and Moose in a 3 Bigs rotation between Center and PF? Not saying Smith will never play SF . .but .. that is also what I think Cheeks and Dumars have in mind as well ..

    • Jul 7, 20138:49 pm
      by Haan

      Reply

      Agreed, Grizz (“Sparma” here).  I think we’ll see Drummond playing a lot with Bynum, with whom he’s established a nice connection.  Doesn’t mean Drummond will play strictly on the second team, but I foresee him struggling to push beyond 30 minutes a game at peak performance, so that your rotation idea makes sense.  With Monroe and Smith getting heavy minutes, I also agree with you that we’ll see the latter some at SF.  Dumars understands the value of a potent bench (and, again, that doesn’t mean I see AD being entirely confined there as happened until late in his rookie season).

  • Jul 7, 20137:30 pm
    by DoctorDave

    Reply

    1. How Do I Grade the Signing of Josh Smith? A-. JoeD really shows he has not lost his mojo by attracting a top talent to the D (AH, really, but that’s another post). Smith was probably the third most sought after FA in this class; and JoeD reels him in. Great work. Now – does he fit? That really is a secondary question. But when it comes to adding talent, this is a win. (The minus in the “A-” comes because we still don’t have a point guard.)
    2. Can this three man front court work? It looks like there is 3 men for two spots – but 30+ minutes each. Monroe and Smith are the “starters” – Moose at C; but Drummond gets 30+ minutes at C. So, Moose plays 15-20 minutes of C, and 15-20 minutes of PF; Smith gets the bulk of his time at PF (with SF minutes as matchups dictate). Which 2 of those three are on the court at the end of each game works itself out with “who has the hot hand”? This really can work – and is there a better front court in the Eastern Conference? Nope.
    3. Playoffs? I think so. I’m excited to see KCP shoot the ball; and I’m hopeful that better players will make Knight a better PG. Singler and English have another year of experience; and a better locker room (we can all hope, right?) propel this time out of the draft and into the post-season. Better yet – this team, as consisted right now, is one PG away from being legitimate again.
    Congratulations to Joe Dumars.

  • Jul 7, 20138:01 pm
    by Max

    Reply

    Love the signing but Drummond, Monroe and Smith have a lot to prove before I’d say they are better than Hibbert, West and George, Lopez, Garnett and Pierce and James, Bosh and whoever.  

    • Jul 7, 201310:24 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      “James, Bosh and whoever”

      Wade is a “whoever”? 

      • Jul 7, 201311:24 pm
        by Max

        Reply

        Come on, Tarsier.  Doctor Dave said the Pistons had the best frontline in the East and I was giving my two cents.  Wade is a guard.  

        • Jul 7, 201311:41 pm
          by tarsier

          Reply

          Since it wasn’t a reply, I was unaware of the context of your comment.

  • Jul 7, 201310:34 pm
    by Ryan Kelly

    Reply

    Lemme close the book on this next year free agency crap for otis or whoever else.  Again.  

     Lebron lol.  Wade; Paul George; Kobe Bryant; Carmelo. Danny granger; Bosh, Deng; Tim Duncan; zach randolph, dirk nowitzki;   THOSE ARE THE FREE AGENTS NEXT YEAR.  now who are we pulling to Detroit That we actually need???   
    I see deng and Danny granger.  Deng will be old.  so wait til next year for one player Granger???????   Not a smart plan.  

  • Jul 7, 201310:36 pm
    by Ryan Kelly

    Reply

    Btw would love Andre miller here.  Excellent veteran.  

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