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News » Detroit Pistons Roster Report 2008-07-03


Detroit Pistons Roster Report 2008-07-03


Detroit Pistons Roster Report 2008-07-03
DRAFT PICKS:

Trent Plaisted, PF/C, 6-11, BYU -- Plaisted, a left-hander, has some effective low-post moves plus a decent mid-range jumper. He also runs the floor well for a man his size.

Deron Washington, F, 6-6, Virginia Tech -- Washington is a good defender and slasher who needs to work on his shooting. Like Plaisted, the Pistons have asked him to play overseas next season.

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER: Point guard Chauncey Billups agreed to a five-year, $60 million contract to stay in Detroit last summer after opting out of his previous deal.

The long-term security didn't change Billups' approach. He made the All-Star team for the third consecutive season and averaged 17 points and 6.8 assists.

His consistency as the team's floor leader is the main reason why the Pistons made the conference finals for the sixth straight season. His hamstring injury was one of the reasons they got stopped short of the Finals again.

MOST DISAPPOINTING PLAYER: Rasheed Wallace was a late addition to the Eastern Conference All-Star team and anchored the Pistons defense. He even controlled himself during the regular season, picking up just 12 technicals. But the Pistons judge themselves in the postseason, and Wallace once again failed them. His whining increased while his production decreased. He was badly outplayed by Kevin Garnett in the conference finals. He was a disaster on the day of the Pistons' final playoff game, first showing up late for the morning shootaround and then figuratively not showing up for the game. He shot 2-for-12 from the field and committed three turnovers with the team's season on the line.

BIGGEST NEEDS: The Pistons need an inside scorer to balance their offense and a rebounder to help Antonio McDyess. Joe Dumars is hoping he can find one big-time player who can do both.

The Pistons also need a backup small forward to Tayshaun Prince and hope that rookie Walter Sharpe can fill that role. They've gone through a handful of those since Prince became a starter. Jarvis Hayes, the last player to hold that position, flopped in the postseason.

FREE AGENT FOCUS: All of the Pistons' starters are under contract at least through next season. But they have five bench players who become unrestricted free agents in July -- center Theo Ratliff, forwards Walter Herrmann and Jarvis Hayes and guards Juan Dixon and Lindsey Hunter.

In all likelihood, none will return next season. Herrmann, a low-cost small forward, has the best chance of getting a contract offer but he will explore opportunities overseas.

PLAYER NOTES:

--Small forward Tayshaun Prince was chosen for the U.S. Olympic Team, though he likely won't play much behind Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James and Kobe Bryant. Prince will utilized as a situational defender by the Olympic staff. His selection was somewhat controversial, since the roster includes only three players who are natural power forwards or centers.

"He's a star playing with stars," head coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "Last summer he was, no pun intended, a prince to coach. He's just the ultimate team player, but a star."

--Point guard Chauncey Billups withdrew his name from consideration for the U.S. Olympic Team, but it was probably a face-saving maneuver. Billups' spot on the 12-man squad was shaky at best because of fierce competition from Jason Kidd and two younger players, Chris Paul and Deron Williams. Billups played regularly as a backup during the FIBA Tournament of the Americas in Las Vegas last summer.

--Point guard Rodney Stuckey was a breakout star in the playoffs but he doesn't consider playing on the summer league team beneath him. Power forward Amir Johnson, shooting guard Arron Afflalo and center Cheikh Samb are also expected to play in the Vegas Summer League in July.


Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website: http://www.foxsports.com
Added: July 3, 2008

 

 
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