The recent discussion about Brandon Knight's possible production got me to thinking about some potential options for the guard line-up that would give him an opportunity to play and develop his NBA game. As we all know, the Pistons are loaded with guards, which is why many of us were hoping they'd snag a quality big in the recent draft. Alas, that was not to be, and I find it hard to fault their decision to opt for Knight. Hopefully this pick will turn out as well as did last year's selection of Greg Monroe.
But while Monroe came to a team that clearly had room on the roster for more big men, Knight's situation is the opposite. He has to fight for playing time at the point with Stuckey and Bynum (and maybe White, too). It's hard to imagine that he's capable of beating both of them out for significant playing time this early in his career. But it doesn't make much sense for him to ride the pine all year for a Pistons' squad that at best is an 8th seed in the playoffs. The sooner he gets an opportunity to play (hopefully this year!) the better for him and the team's future.
I think the best option is for the Pistons to move Stuckey to shooting guard. Lots of people already think that's a better position for him, but the key for this discussion is that it lessens the logjam ahead of Knight. If Stuckey is the starting SG, I would not be surprised if Bynum began the season as the starting PG. But that would still allow Knight to get significant minutes as the backup PG. Hopefully in time he would move into the starting line-up, just as Monroe eventually did last year.
Of course, moving Stuckey to SG means we'd have a glut at that position with Hamilton and Gordon also at that spot. But Hamilton is at a point in his career where he'll be most effective if he can produce coming off the bench, and Gordon will best contribute to the team if he can be "instant offense" off the bench. So I think it makes more sense to start Stuckey and let those guys battle it out for the backup spot (unless a trade opportunity materializes).
I think an eventual backcourt pairing of Knight and Stuckey could work well together. Next year's draft looks to have lots of quality in the frontcourt positions, so with some luck and time we might be able to put together a good young team that will improve over time.
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