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2018 Offseason Team Needs: Detroit Pistons

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The Detroit Pistons have been through a series of ups and downs within the past few years. The 2017-18 season was full of those. As we all know, the Pistons missed the playoffs for the eighth time in the last 10 seasons. Last season, they just missed it, finishing 9th right behind the Washington Wizards. The Pistons tried to make adjustments by trading away two stars, Tobias Harris and Avery Bradley, and center Boban Marjanovic. In exchange, the Pistons received their new star, Blake Griffin, along with Willie Reed and Brice Johnson from the Clippers. Not only did the Pistons make changes to their roster, the organization also made a crucial change within its coaching staff. Head coach, Stan Van Gundy and the Pistons parted ways after the regular season. This change resulted in the hiring of former Raptors head coach, Dwane Casey. Now, with a new head coach and a star player added to the roster, the Pistons must build in this offseason to become playoff contenders next season.

Pistons’ Needs By Position

1: Point Guard

The PG position needs big improvement. Reggie Jackson played in only 45 games last season due to injuries which led to backup guard Ish Smith receiving more minutes. In 2015, the Pistons made a questionable deal with Reggie Jackson by signing him to a five-year, $80 million contract. Since then, Reggie has been dealing with injuries and inconsistencies with his play. Over the next two seasons, he is set to make $32 million. The Pistons traded away their 2018 first round draft pick, so their chances of drafting a young solid guard is very slim to none. The Pistons must now rely on free agency and trades to acquire a guard who’s worth the time and money but, with limited cap space, that might be hard to accomplish.

2: Shooting Guard

Over the last two seasons, the Pistons have tried to add depth to the shooting guard position. Last year, the Pistons added now Clippers guard Avery Bradley along with the 12th overall pick in the 2017 draft, Luke Kennard. Luke had a decent rookie year with the Pistons, playing in 73 games while shooting 44% from FG and 41% from the three-point line. Kennard has the potential to develop into a solid shooting guard for the Pistons, both offensively and defensively. Now, with the absence of a solid starting shooting guard and money, the Pistons should try to get a two guard like Rodney Hood, who can provide scoring and decent defense during this offseason.

3: Small Forward

The small forward position has almost always been a problem for the Pistons. Up until the signing of Tobias Harris, the team struggled with acquiring a wing who can score and provide lockdown defense. Tobias Harris was a good pickup for the Pistons, as he provided just that. Since the trade that sent Tobias to the Clippers, the Pistons haven’t found a true wing to fit the team. The chance of signing a small forward like LeBron James is out of the question. However, the Pistons could pursue a small forward like Doug McDermott, who’s still trying to develop his game. Due to the amount of cap space, there may be a problem in acquiring him. So, moving forward, the team must work with players like Stanley Johnson and James Ennis III to fit their needs.

4: Power Forward

Last season, the Pistons sacrificed a future first round pick and cap space by signing Blake Griffin. They’ve also re-signed veteran forward, Anthony Tolliver. Both forwards provide the team with defense, they can also find a way to score. Backup forward Jon Leuer provides good depth to the PF position for the Pistons. However, the Pistons must worry about his future while he recovers from an ankle injury. Unfortunately, there aren’t many appealing or affordable power forwards the Pistons could look to sign during this years offseason. They will need more depth in this position.

5: Center

The center position needs work as well. The Pistons have a powerhouse center in Andre Drummond, the league leader in rebounds last season. However, the Pistons lack depth in the center position. The team needs to somehow acquire a backup center who can help protect the paint, rebound, and put up points inside. Although Eric Moreland has talent, he still needs to develop his game more on both offense and defense. A lot of money goes toward paying Andre Drummond as well, so the Pistons will have a tough time making good moves during this offseason.

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About Tiauna Allen

Student at Eastern Michigan University Sports Management Major Journalism Minor

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