What in the World are the Detroit Pistons Doing?

Today, yahoo.com’s Adrian Wojnarowski (yes I spelled it right. Go me) reported that the Detroit Pistons acquired point guard Brandon Jennings from the Milwaukee Bucks. Detroit earlier in the summer signed the mercurial Josh Smith from Atlanta to a 4 year, $54 million contract. Jennings even took a lot less money than market value (his deal is 3 years and $24 million) to get out of Milwaukee’s Mediocrity Hell and join a stacked front court in Detroit.

But a lot of people are wondering exactly what the Pistons are trying to do. While they have a fearsome front court, with Smith at small forward, Greg Monroe at power forward, and Andre Drummond at center. And until the Jennings trade, they had very little skill or depth at either guard position, starting Brandon Knight at point guard and Rodney Stuckey at shooting guard. Acquiring Jennings does give them a very good if not great point guard, and their collective athleticism is off the charts.

However, Jennings can’t do one thing which is of dire need for the Pistons: shoot. He shot only 39% from the field last season, according to nba.com, and he is a particularly shaky jump shooter. Considering that their other big three players can’t shoot, Detroit will often struggle for floor spacing. The Pistons also now possess two of the least efficient, highest volume shooters in the league in Jennings and Smith. Expect a lot of bricks in Motown next season.

However, this was a necessary move for the Pistons. They desperately needed scoring and ball handling, and they identified someone who could fill both of those needs at a price way below market value. And if the grand experiment in Detroit doesn’t work, they can always move Jennings’ attractive deal to a contender or to a team with a ton of cap space to acquire a draft pick or young talent. All in all, a decent deal for the Pistons.


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