Pistons Mailbag - Thursday, April 7, 2011 - Page 3
Pistons.com editor Keith Langlois answers your questions about the Pistons and NBA. Click here to submit your questions - please include your name, email address and city/state on the form. Return to the Mailbag homepage.
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Anthony (Bensenville, Ill.): With Jonas hopefully back at 100 percent next season, will he assume the role as starting power forward? Or will he push for the starting job at small forward? I think heís better suited to power forward, allowing Daye to play small forward.
Langlois: The Pistons are comfortable with him at either spot for now. Itís always possible heíll grow clearly into one or the other, Anthony, but itís also possible Ė if Daye and Jerebko prove to the Pistonsí two best forwards Ė that future coaches will choose to use them almost interchangeably, allowing them to play either side to best exploit individual matchups. There always will be some power forwards too physically overwhelming for Daye to guard, so Jerebko could guard them while conceivably playing small forward offensively if the matchup dictates Daye play power forward at that end of the floor.
Kim (Sterling Heights, Mich.): I frequently hear the Pistons say their talent is equal to or better than teams fighting for the playoffs. Is their view shared by other teams and the media?
Langlois: Media projections last summer were pretty hard on the Pistons. Not many had them making the playoffs. I donít know that thereís a marketplace of opinion where you can go to sample what players think of the talent on other rosters, but there is a network among players from team to team. When Tracy McGrady signed with the Pistons last summer, he said he thought that without the injuries that wiped them out last season, they would have been a playoff team. And he clearly thought that adding him opened up possibilities beyond just making the playoffs. So thatís one credible view from a long-established NBA star. Now, two straight seasons with under 30 wins will alter the opinions even of the players who a year ago might have thought differently about the talent level here. The only thing that can change that thinking back is winning more games next season.
Ronald (San Francisco): Between Brandon Knight and Kemba Walker, who do you prefer?
Langlois: Tough call. I like Knightís greater size and believe he will be a better 3-point shooter in the NBA. You have to admire Walkerís toughness and willpower, but Iíll admit I have no feel for how his game will translate to the NBA. Iíd be nervous taking him in the lottery and expecting him to deliver as a rookie the way youíd expect of a lottery pick. Iíd feel great if I had a fairly set roster and rotation on a solid playoff contender and could afford to use him off the bench as a change-of-pace guy.
Frank (Oxfordshire, England): How do you rate Jan Vesely from the Czech Republic? I think he might wind up being one of the top five picks in this relatively weak draft. He is like 6-foot-11 and 240 pounds, a decent defender and has freakish athleticism? Isnít he exactly what the Pistons need?
Langlois: Never seen him play, Frank, so I only know what I hear and read on Vesely. Iíve had one scout who has seen him multiple times say he sees similarities between Vesely and Jonas Jerebko but thinks Jerebko is the more athletic of the two. With Jared Sullinger and John Henson saying theyíre headed back to school, itís possible Vesely will wind up on the short list for the Pistons if they wind up drafting at No. 7 or 8.
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