NBA Rumors: 4 Offseason targets to help Detroit Pistons take big step forward
Exploring four offseason targets that would help the Detroit Pistons move up the Eastern Conference standings in 2023-24.
There are three words to describe the Detroit Pistons‘ 2022-23 season: injuries, ancient, and juvenile.
Let’s address the elephant in the room with injuries. The crown jewel for the Pistons is Cade Cunningham. He played all of 12 games during the 2022-23 season. That’s it. He was experiencing shin soreness that held him out for an additional 70 games. Coming into his second season, this is the time to show all you practiced in the offseason after getting adjusted to the speed of the game.
From those 12 games, you could see why the Pistons drafted him with the No. 1 overall pick. He was more assertive and decisive than his rookie year and the team reaped benefits. While gathering all of three wins in those 12 games, he only had a negative plus/minus four times. Not too bad for a sophomore.
Ancient. The Pistons did the right thing by reassigning Dwane Casey to the front office. He was built for the Blake Griffin/Andre Drummond frontcourt rather than the development of young players. His curmudgeon ways were rubbing the players the wrong way and they needed a new voice. Not a lot of curmudgeons can last in the NBA these days unless your name is Greg Popovich. With a ripe roster and a direction in mind, whoever becomes the next Pistons coach is set up for success.
Lastly, juvenile. The average age for the Pistons is 24.8. While not young, definitely not old. But the featured players are young. Cade, Jaden Ivey, baby Jalen Duren, and even newly acquired James Wiseman are all in the max third season, and their play on the court showed it. Amassing a team average of 14 turnovers a game it is clear to see why they are back in the lottery. The loss of Cunningham did allow for Ivey to handle the rock more. While not ideal circumstances for a big to function without a facilitator, Duren, and Wiseman, Duren showed why he is the future big man on this roster. Just wait until Cunningham is back and is throwing lobs to the top of the backboard and Duren is feasting in “D12” like fashion.
The Detroit Pistons have a great opportunity to improve this offseason
Detroit had a 117.8 defensive rating, which ranks them 27th out of 30 teams for the 2022-23 season. They need on that side of the ball. With another lottery pick around $25-30 million in cap space, let’s examine some potential targets who could help right this ship and bring a championship back to Detroit.