Pistons Mailbag - Thursday, March 1 - Page 2
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Glenn (Cavite, Philippines): Which position do you think the Pistons most need to fill? I’d say power forward. Greg Monroe gives them a big advantage at center and I think a shot-blocker and rebounder would perfectly complement Monroe’s style. What do you think?
Langlois: A star player falling into their lap at any position would be welcomed, Glenn. But I wouldn’t disagree with you – an imposing defensive big man would change the entire feel of the roster. Those guys don’t exactly grow on trees, though. I also think a guy who scores consistently and efficiently, maybe an athletic wing player who can defend and shoot to the 3-point line, would make a big difference.
Robert (Shelby Twp., Mich.): I’ve been reading up on Perry Jones III and from all accounts he is about as talented as they come. The biggest rap on him is that he lacks a relentless motor needed to become great. Since it’s well-known that Monroe and Knight are relentless workers, do you think their dedication would rub off on Jones and make him want to work hard?
Langlois: There don’t seem to be any real character red flags with Jones, but NBA executives investing lottery picks and millions of dollars in players have to have something more than taking it on faith that being around other hard-working young players will turn a guy into a hard worker. In general, there is a pretty widespread school of thought among personnel evaluators that you either play hard or you don’t – it’s not very likely that it’s something that develops. Now, I don’t know that Jones has an issue with playing hard, but I’ve seen a handful of Baylor games this season and in a few he’s been very good and in others he’s been virtually invisible. The critical question scouts will ask themselves is if that’s on Jones or if it has something to do with the way he’s used and how Baylor is coached. It seemed a cinch that Jones would be a top-three or at least a top-five pick coming into the season. Now there’s a real chance he slides out of the top 10. You can bet all teams, the Pistons included, who feel there’s a chance they’ll be drafting in the lottery are poring over every available bit of evidence to figure out who Perry Jones really is.
Dave (Sterling Heights, Mich.): I see Philadelphia similarly to the Pistons – a cold-weather location, not a huge market, storied history. But they are a team on the rise due to good coaching and their lottery picks over the last few years. Here is why we would be better off playing youth and if we lose a few more games maybe it will pay off in the future.
Langlois: Greg Monroe and Brandon Knight are the youngest guys on the team. They’re both averaging more than 30 minutes a game. Rodney Stuckey and Jonas Jerebko are playing plenty, too. The only young player not a part of the rotation at this point is Austin Daye, and it’s not for lack of opportunity. It would be tough to argue that Frank hasn’t given Daye chances to win a job or that Daye has done enough to warrant a greater role. The Pistons still see a future for Daye, who possesses a unique skill set. As long as he doesn’t quit on himself, they’ll stand behind him.
Simon (London, England: People say Sullinger is a bad fit next to Greg Monroe. I think otherwise. He’s a good player and if he’s available, pick him.
Langlois: If Sullinger can effectively score in the low post, he’d be a great pick for anybody. There are legitimate concerns whether he’ll be able to do that in the NBA, though. Someone who could command double-team attention would benefit Monroe and the Pistons nicely. Again, the question is whether Sullinger is that guy.
Adrian (New York City): Are you impressed with Biyombo so far? With his size, length, defense and rebounding, he might well be the perfect partner for Monroe. I rate him as high as Anthony Davis in this draft. Should the Pistons trade their first-round pick for Biyombo? If Biyombo was available when we picked last year, would Dumars have taken him or Knight?
Langlois: I’ve seen him in person twice now. Biyombo is a guy who’s going to make some wow plays every night – big dunks, big blocks, tough rebounds in traffic. It’s in all those other moments between the wow plays – setting tough screens, being a disruptive pick-and-roll defender, making the simple pass – that will determine whether he becomes a big-time player. He’s really quick on his feet and it seems his timing is terrific. I can see the comparisons to Serge Ibaka.
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