The Detroit Pistons managed to win only 29 after acquiring Josh Smith, the franchise's highest-paid player ever per annum, via free agency, Brandon Jennings via trade, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope via the lottery. Combined with a full season of good health for Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe, that is a remarkable achievement for all the wrong reasons.
Over the next several days, Detroit Bad Boys will assign the credit and blame where it thinks it's due in its postseason grades. Grades are on a four-point scale, and you are seeing the average of the DBB hive-mind with comments, surly and otherwise.
Today, part two -- the rest of the bench.
Chauncey Billups: 0.70
Mike Payne: Chauncey earns an ounce of understanding given the off-position usage at shooting guard. Even at his age, I would have trusted Chauncey more with the ball in his hands. The best option going forward? Retirement.
revken: Sadly, Billups' body is no longer capable of performing at the necessary level, and injuries severly limited both his effectiveness and playing time.
brgulker: The only thing worth remembering about Chauncey's season was the warm welcome he received from the Pistons' faithful on opening night. I get goosebumps just thinking about it. If it's the end of his career, that night is how I'll choose to remember him and his return to Detroit. Also, comparing Josh Smith jumpers to turnovers is about the best quote in Pistons' history.
(Yeah, I know he didn't actually say "Josh Smith.")
Sean_Corp: We'll always have that first game. Billups in a Pistons uniform again, hitting shots, getting huge ovations from the Palace crowd. That alone made his return worth it. It's sad, though, that injuries marred what might be his last season in the NBA and force him to retire before he wants to.
Packey: I'm really happy Billups was brought back, but aside from the first game, as Sean mentioned above, he's been nothing like the Billups of old ... just old.
Will Bynum: 1.33
brgulker: Statistically speaking, Will Bynum's production is trending downward as he ages, which is to be expected from an undersized point guard who can't shoot. However, his chemistry with Andre Drummond is one of this season's highlights, even if his numbers aren't.
revken: Bynum had his usual mix of good games and bad games. His biggest weakness is that he often looks for his own offense to the exclusion of his teammates.
Mike Payne: Everybody's favorite scapegoat was about as productive as Josh Smith was this season, but with only 1/3 the shot attempts and minutes. Given Bynum's cost and role, fan's expectations shouldn't be much higher than what he submitted this season.
Sean_Corp: As the flagship member of the What About Will Bynum? club, I have to say that I hated Bynum slightly less this season. With Peyton Siva ineffective and Brandon Jennings maddeningly inconsistent, Bynum occasionally gave the Pistons a scoring boost and some backcourt stability. But it was still rare and there was still more bad than good. Here's hoping that the team can offload him to a playoff team that needs a scoring boost for their bench.
Packey: Bynum's been more tolerable the last couple years, as he's been less selfish when he shares the floor with Andre Drummond. He's still frustratingly mediocre and it won't get better as he enters his age 32 season.
Rodney Stuckey: 1.63
revken: As always, the issue with Stuckey is consistency. At times he was our best offensive threat, and his ability to draw fouls driving to the basket was a great asset. But when he was hurt or ineffective, the Pistons' bench production was usually abysmal.
Mike Payne: It was a forgettable end to another forgettable season by Stuckey, an up-and-down battle that will hopefully be another team's burden next season.
brgulker: Stuckey's hot start overshadows just how poorly he played overall. Think about this: Rodney Stuckey was third on the team in field goals attempted per thirty-six minutes and third in usage rate, behind only Charlie Villanueva and Josh Smith. His effective field goal percentage (which takes into account two's and three's) was identical to Josh Smith's. That's unforgivable.
Sean_Corp: Stuckey played typical Stuckey ball. Inconsistent, oft-injured, sometimes brilliant. But even when he provided a scoring punch it was in ways the Pistons didn't really need -- slashes to the basket and elbow jumpers. And his defense was among the worst I've ever seen him play.
Packey: Stuckey had a stretch of five really good games from Nov. 24 through Dec. 1, and the mother of his child was on the The Bachelor.
Charlie Villanueva: 0.50
brgulker: I don't fault Tom Gores for not using the amnesty clause to get out of Charlie's contract, but the reality is it would have been better for all parties had he done so.
Shinons*: The 180 minutes he received were probably more than he deserved, and he did practically nothing with them. A perfect capstone to CV's Pistons career.
revken: Villanueva contributed surprisingly little on a team that could have used his ability to stretch the floor. Perhaps coaches deserve some blame here, but mostly it looks like a guy content to collect his paycheck and watch NBA basketball.
Packey: What he does for children that share his disease (alopecia) is noble and he wasn't a distraction on Twitter this year. Look, I was able to say some positive things about Charlie Villanueva.
Jonas Jerebko: 3.10
Mike Payne: Before the Pistons were rumored to be interested in Josh Smith, I said Jonas Jerebko was 80% of the player at 20% of the cost. This season, Jonas showed that I might have been under-selling him.
revken: Jerebko often performed well when given enough minutes, and showed that he can be at least an average reserve forward.
brgulker: By now, the Pistons know who Jonas Jerebko is -- at least they should, if they are paying attention. Jonas has proven himself to be a useful rotation player whose tweener versatility allows him to play both forward positions based on matchups. Glued to the bench, his contract looks like another Dumars whiff, but when given minutes, Jonas proves time and again that there's more to that story.
Sean_Corp: When Jerebko was finally given an opportunity late in the season, he showed that he can be a valuable rotation big on the right team. Unfortunately, I'm not sure what he brings at this point are the types of thing Detroit is looking for. Kyle Singler brings a lot of the same skills with the added benefit of actually having a 3-point shot. If the Pistons could surround JJ with perimeter shooting he could be a great second big man off the bench. But as is they really don't have a place for him.
Packey: Jerebko had the quietest quality season on the team this year and has every right to be upset with how this organization has used him and opt out of his final year, though I don't think he'll get that kind of money elsewhere.
In part three, we're going to take a deeper dive into the performance of individual players. Up next, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.