The lineup the Detroit Pistons roll out on opening night likely won’t be met with too many questions, so here’s what it will likely look like.
The Detroit Pistons front office did an outstanding job adding talent to the roster with the limited money that they had to spend. The point guard rotation – although may be slightly unreliable – can provide stability. Coach Dwane Casey was notorious last season for playing “lineup roulette” for the first 35-40 games of the season, as he was attempting to figure out what combinations of players worked, and which ones didn’t.
This season should be relatively simple. There aren’t too many liabilities on either end of the floor and the players Detroit signed more or less already know their roles. The lineup the Detroit Pistons roll out on opening night likely won’t be met with too many questions, so here’s what it will likely look like:
PG: Reggie Jackson
SG: Bruce Brown
SF: Tony Snell
PF: Blake Griffin
C: Andre Drummond
Though it seems that many would like to see new addition Derrick Rose start at the point guard position, it’s best for him to run with the second unit for reasons we’ll discuss soon.
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Tony Snell, who was acquired via trade from Milwaukee just ahead of draft night adds wing depth to a team that was severely lacking a season ago when Glenn Robinson III was the only true small forward on the roster.
The tandem of Drummond and Griffin will continue to dominate and there will presumably be zero questions about that. Bruce Brown saw a majority of his Summer League minutes playing point guard, but unless the position sees significant injuries and the team starts lacking depth, he’ll remain seeing his time at shooting guard increase.
What’s interesting, is this lineup likely won’t be in place during a late game setting, but we’ll talk about that later as well.
The Detroit Pistons wasted no time starting free agency on June 30th by signing point guard Derrick Rose at the opening bell. Rose showed a great deal of promise last season, bucking a few concerning career trends regarding his shooting before eventually succumbing to injury, which is the overarching career trend for the first pick of the 2008 NBA Draft.
One of the biggest knocks on Rose in his career is that he shoots the ball poorly. He is a career 30.4% 3-point shooter in his career, with just four of his 11 seasons finishing over the 30% mark. However, the best 3-point shooting season of his career was last season at 37%.
It’s a mark that should give Pistons fans some hope in their new backup point guard, but it’s also one that should be taken with a grain of salt. 3-point shooting is high variance and even for long-term proven shooters can vary significantly over small samples. In fact, sometimes 500 or more attempts are required to truly get an idea of a player’s actual proficiency from behind the arc.
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Last season Derrick Rose shot just 146 3-pointers, a number which tells you very little even in significant outliers of great or poor success. In fact, over his first 33 games last season for the Minnesota Timberwolves, he shot a remarkable 46.8% from long range, but he only took 112 3-pointers over that span.
He then crashed back down to earth and made two of the next 34 3-point attempts over his final 18 games before the Timberwolves shut him down in the middle of March due to bone chips in his elbow.