By: Travis Thayer (@TheTravisThayer)
2012-13 Record: 29-53
Projected 2013-14 Finish: 3th in the Central Division
Projected Starting Lineup
Brandon Jennings, PG
Chauncey Billups, SG
Josh Smith, SF
Greg Monroe, PF
Andre Drummond, C
Will Bynum, G
Rodney Stuckey, G
(R) Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, G
Charlie Villanueva, F
The Motor City is ready to see the Pistons get back to playoff basketball. The additions of Josh Smith and Brandon Jennings should be enough to get them there. The Pistons number one strength is clearly in the front-court. The combination of Greg Monroe, Andre Drummond, and Josh Smith should make opposing teams cringe. The three together will make for a great rebounding and shot blocking force. Add that together with better guard play, and the Pistons are primed to return to the playoffs for the first time in four years.
On paper, the Pistons don’t seem to have many flaws. One thing that might plague them this season is their lack of depth in the front-court. I’m not convinced that Charile Villanueva and Jonas Jerebko are going to play well enough of the bench to make the Pistons a serious contender. The Pistons will need to become a better shooting team (.45% FG, .35% 3PT, .70% FT) in order to compete in the Central Division, which should be one of the better divisions in the league.
The Central Division won’t be won by the Detroit Pistons this year, but they should still have a chance to find a way to make the playoffs as a seven or eight seed. Brandon Jennings and Josh Smith give the Pistons instant credibility, and they shouldn’t be taken lightly this season. There is still a lot of youth on this team, and they will need to learn how to win before they can be considered a legitimate threat in the East.