With the Pistons pushing as hard as they can toward the NBA playoffs, they will need all the help they can get. Unfortunately, Jodie Meeks may not be able to help. After suffering some sort of shoulder injury, there is a possibility that Meeks could miss the rest of the regular season:
Acknowledging but choosing not to elaborate, Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy said Monday he doesn't expect Meeks back in game-ready shape before the end of the season.
"No, I don't," Van Gundy said. "Unfortunately."
Meeks was the first free agent Stan Van Gundy signed after taking control of the Pistons. In two seasons, he has played a total of 62 games, and only two this season. Meeks was on his way back into game-ready shape, but even Van Gundy said he would have a hard time getting playing time.
Van Gundy chose to activate Meeks for games March 12 vs. Philadelphia and March 14 vs. Washington but acknowledged it would be difficult for the 6-foot-4 shooting guard to crack the rotation.
Now it becomes a point of continuity and chemistry. With the Pistons having played most of the year without him, do you risk inserting him into the lineup during the playoffs if he's ready? Or do you ride with the players that have been playing together? Would it be better for Van Gundy to bring in Reggie Bullock who started the year slow but has been very efficient of late, or bring in Meeks who has had a decent career prior to signing with Detroit? If I were to guess, Van Gundy's more likely to run with Bullock and Darrun Hilliard over Meeks.
Unless the Pistons decide to waive Meeks, his contract is fully guaranteed next year. It may be in the team's and Meeks' best interest to shut him down for the remainder of the season (including playoffs) and work on getting him healthy to provide something to the team next year.
How do you feel about the Meeks situation?