I’m going to start this off by saying this is just what I want, or what I’d prefer to happen during the 2014 offseason, essentially, this is just the whimsical delusions of a fan who has nothing better to do at the moment. For realism’s sake, I am assuming we don’t make the playoffs and lose our pick.
Dumars is relieved of his duties as GM, Pistons hold interviews, decide to stay in-house and promote Ken Catanella (Director of Basketball Operations). Catanella is my choice for two reasons:
1. I don’t know whether the Pistons could actually attract any decent or proven GMs
2. He is a numbers guy, and if there is one thing I love about the NBA, its stats.
My case for Catanella isn’t strong, but to be honest I can’t think of too many GMs who would want to wander into the Pistons’ murky front office, and I think an in-house solution might just be what we need. That being said, I guess I should introduce you to our new rookie General Manager, here is what the Pistons had to say when he was first hired:
"Catanella joins the Pistons after spending several years with the NBA League Office.
In his role with the Pistons, Catanella will serve as the team’s salary cap specialist and direct Detroit’s analytics efforts.
Prior to his time with the league office, Catanella worked for the New Jersey Nets (2006-08) where he managed the Nets’ analytics and spearheaded the creation and implementation of their statistical scouting systems.
A graduate of Amherst College where he played collegiately, Catanella has worked on Wall Street providing analytics on stadium/arena financings for professional teams and valuing publicly traded companies. While earning his MBA at Duke University, Catanella served as a graduate assistant to the Blue Devils Men’s Basketball team from 2004-05. Catanella has also played professionally for the Bundesliga’s Cologne 99ers of the German League and later served as the assistant general manager of the 99ers."
In a not-so-shocking news, Chauncey Billups opts to retire, and becomes Catanella’s assistant, the two immediately start working on fixing the roster. Their first move is to hire Lionel Hollins to the tune of 3Y/9M.
Unsure of his value to the team after a couple of tumultuous seasons, Jonas Jerebko decides to decline his Player Option of $4.5M for the 2014-2015 season in an effort to test out his market value, whilst Detroit decides to pick up Josh Harrellson’s Team Option for the following season.
Catanella then informs Rodney Stuckey that the team will not be looking to re-sign him during the offseason, and notifies Monroe’s agent that the Pistons will look to retain the bigman at any cost, and will match any offer sheet that is thrown his way.
In a surprising move, the Wizards decide to trade for Josh Smith in an effort to solidify their playoff hopes as well as bolster their front-court and increase their defensive presence. The Pistons and Wizards execute a draft-day deal wherein the Wizards receive Josh Smith and Kyle Singler in exchange for Martell Webster, Drew Gooden and their 2014 2nd Round Pick. The Pistons would then select Alex Poythress (36th) and Thanasis Antetokounmpo (47th).
Following what would be deemed the first blockbuster move of the offseason, the Pistons decide to re-sign Greg Monroe to a max deal, and are linked to negotiations with Shannon Brown and Trevor Ariza, who eventually sign with the Pistons (Trevor Ariza (3Y/15M) and Shannon Brown (2Y/6M with a 3rd PO)).
Training camp, comes and goes, and coming into the season, the Pistons boast an upgraded perimeter and arguably a better frontcourt than the year before, their starting lineup consists of:
Drummond – Monroe – Ariza – Caldwell Pope – Jennings
In the second unit, Shannon Brown is considered the team’s Sixth Man, and gets the lion’s share of the minutes at shooting guard, with Bynum and Siva splitting the point. Harrellson, Mitchell and Webster become the de-facto backups to the new and improved frontcourt trio. Poythress and Datome are out of the rotation for the time being and ride the pine, Thanasis is assigned to the D-League in a ‘Pierre Jackson’ type move, whilst Drew Gooden is awarded the ‘Corey Maggette Award’ and is not expected to contribute to the team unless there is an injury.
Prediction for 2014-2015: 42-40 Sixth seed.
For me, this is a best-case scenario, and I guess you could say its either optimistic or pessimistic depending on how you view this current season and its outcomes. Well, these were my offseason hopes, what are yours?