The 2014 NBA Draft Lottery took place on Tuesday, while the lottery worked out for a number of teams, it didn’t work out well for the Detroit Pistons. The Pistons will be without a first-round pick for the upcoming draft, leaving the Pistons with only one draft pick in the 2014 NBA Draft and that pick is No. 38 overall which is in the second round of the draft.
Now for those who missed the lottery or don’t quite understand how the Pistons didn’t get a first round pick, Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press explains how this outcome came about below:
When the Cleveland Cavaliers, who were slotted ninth, jumped to the top spot, it sent the Pistons’ first-round pick to the Charlotte Hornets to complete the terms of the 2012 trade.
The outcome is the result of the 2012 trade of Ben Gordon to the then-Bobcats for the expiring contract of Corey Maggette — a move that saved the Pistons $14 million.
The move looks unwise now.
Pistons owner Tom Gores could have OK’d using the amnesty clause on Gordon — a transaction that allows for the waiving of a player and excising his salary from the cap. The player still receives the compensation but the idea was to get rid of Gordon’s unwieldy contract to create cap space for last summer.
The plan went awry when former Pistons president of basketball of operations Joe Dumars decided to use that cap space on Josh Smith.
It’s a gut punch for the franchise. A first-round pick in a deep draft class could offer hope to a beaten fan base. It could have continued the momentum of Van Gundy’s hiring in helping fill some of the empty seats at the Palace.
While I do agree with Ellis that this is gut punch for the franchise, especially considering how deep the draft class is this year, I don’t think the Pistons are in horrible position for this year’s draft. The Pistons may only have one pick in this draft and that pick may be in the second round but that doesn’t mean the Pistons can’t gain a good player in this year’s draft. I have said it before and I will say it again, if the Pistons have the right type of staff that knows how to scout and select talent, then the Pistons should be able find and select who they want and need in the first round of this draft just like they can find and select who they want and need in the second round of this draft.
Honestly, before the Pistons concentrate on the the draft, they need to concentrate on their current roster because who they decide to keep and let go of, are going to determine how they attack this year’s draft and free agency class.
Now, when I say the Pistons need to concentrate on who they are going to keep and let go of, it’s goes beyond the contracts and money. It’s about who fits the new system of the Pistons new head coach Stan Van Gundy. To make it simple, I will break it down by position, check out my audio podcast below:
So if you listen to my audio podcast above, you will see where I am coming from and I stand by what I said, the Pistons need to focus on their current roster and make decision about their own roster before they can focus on the 2014 NBA Draft. Once they make the necessary decisions concerning their roster, they can begin making the correct decisions about the NBA Draft.
Written by LBeasley (Lauren Beasley), Sports Contributor for Radio One Detroit