Detroit Pistons: 10 Players To Target in Free Agency

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Mar 11, 2014; Auburn Hills, MI, USA; Detroit Pistons power forward Greg Monroe (10) points up during the national anthem before the game against the Sacramento Kings at The Palace of Auburn Hills. Pistons beat the Kings 99-89. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

The summer of 2014 marks the beginning of a new era in Detroit Pistons basketball. After 14 years as general manager, Joe Dumars officially stepped down from his role as Pistons president of basketball operations on Monday. Dumars decision paves the way for an exciting off-season for Pistons fans, as the rebuilding begins.

If the residents of the Motor City aren’t in fact excited, that’s understandable though. Technically, this will be the fifth straight year that rebuilding will have “started” for the Pistons. Detroit hasn’t made the postseason since they were swept in the first round back in 2009 by LeBron James‘ Cleveland Cavaliers, and if that’s to change in the near future, this summer will be key.

Obviously, whoever replaces Dumars will be the key figure and voice in reshaping the roster, as will the yet to be appointed new head coach, but there are certain realities that are crystal clear to everybody on the outside looking in.

Josh Smith can’t play small forward. The new man in charge faces the prospect of either looking for a team willing to take on his colossal contract, or pinning their fate on Smith, moving him to the power forward spot and letting Greg Monroe walk away this summer.

Josh Smith and Andre Drummond have the potential to mesh into a great frontcourt pairing, so the question is what needs to happen at the point and on the wings. With Brandon Jennings having an underwhelming season, his future needs to be considered. If a deal can be done to move him, the Pistons should consider, otherwise they need to look at better decision-making guards to surround him with.

Unrestricted free agents Rodney Stuckey and Charlie Villanueva have been criminally overpaid and will likely both be allowed to leave, while the injury-prone Chauncey Billups is highly unlikely to see his team option picked up for next year.

With those four players coming off the books, the Pistons will be committed to pay just more than $35 million next season, leaving them approximately $25 million below the cap and $38 million below the tax threshold, assuming those numbers stay at a similar level this year.

With that in mind, the Pistons have a little bit of flexibility to play with, meaning that they should at least take a look at the following ten players in free agency.

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Tags: Detroit Pistons

  • Joshua Giovannone

    Absolutely agree with Melo and Lowry. Those two could be crucial pieces especially with a good draft. (Harris or Stauskas)

    • Adam McGee

      Thanks for the comment, Joshua! Absolutely. As disastrous as this season was, the Pistons aren’t far away from being a good team. Smith and Drummond are great pieces, if utilized and coached properly, and KCP proved his potential, once again, last night. Either one of the bigger names like Melo or Lowry, or a combination of a couple of the other solid role players, with a good draft pick, and this team will be back in shape in no time.

      • Joshua Giovannone

        I especially want Lowry. I think he would help tremendously and would definitely be an improvement. Melo would be a teenage dream come true. Getting Melo would be really nice if we got Hollins as a coach. He could really help Melo develop his defense even at this age. I agree this team was only a piece or two away but it always seems that way. Hopefully with a new GM they can get it right. With all of the money we have, there’s no reason we shouldn’t be big spenders this offseason.

        • Adam McGee

          What would you like to see happen with Jennings then? Do you think there’s a team that will take him? Do you move him to the two spot? I think Hollins is a great fit, personally can’t understand why he wasn’t hired as soon as Cheeks was fired. GM is the most important acquisition of the summer though. Not sure I like the Isiah Thomas route, better going after someone like Scott Perry from the Magic and hoping he takes after Ujiri and Presti.

          • Joshua Giovannone

            I mean Lowry is definitely an upgrade and there would probably be an average market for Jennings but keeping him wouldn’t be bad. It really depends on how we draft. I like Thomas obviously being a Pistons fan but if he turned out bad like the second half of Dumars, it would be a sad sight. Another Bad Boy who now has a bad taste with fans. I’d rather have him save face and us go after the Cleveland GM. Maybe that will help us go after big name guys like Melo and Lowry. My dream would be let Monroe walk, LeBron opts out and we sign him and Lowry. Drummond and Smith at the 5 after did 4 respectively, lebron at 3, draft or Jennings at 2, Lowry at 1. Yes that is after did dream but if there were a way to convince lebron to come to Detroit, money would be a good start along with a pairing with Drummond, a future all star.

  • Cmenguita

    You forgot Trevor Ariza who, imho, would be a perfect fit (with Smith at the four, of course).

    Vazquez (who sould be more affordable than Lowry) and Lance could help a lot too…