Pistons' draft guru and assistant GM Brian Wright poached by San Antonio
The San Antonio Spurs have signed the Pistons' Brian Wright to their staff, where he will assume the same position he previously held in Detroit. Described as one of the team's best draft gurus, he helped evaluate the Pistons' past four draft picks (Stanley Johnson, Darrun Hilliard, Henry Ellenson, and Micheal Gbinije) and was one of the driving forces behind getting them to Detroit. Wright had been with the team since 2014, and before that, had seen time with the Orlando Magic's front office, with whom he stayed for eight years. Brian marks the second assistant GM to have been taken from the Pistons this offseason, with long-time executive Ken Catanella joining the Sacramento Kings earlier in the offseason.
As Vince Ellis from the Detroit Free Press relays, Stan Van Gundy believes the move shows that he is nurturing a very strong group of executives within his front office.
"We were sorry to lose him but happy for him at the same time," Van Gundy said. "You get good people doing a good job, that means people are going to come after them.
"The benefit to the organization is when that starts to happen is that people look at your organization in a good light."
Gregg Popovich also gave a ringing endorsement of the Spurs' decision to pick up Wright, and gave some props to SVG in the process, per the Freep:
"I think he'll thrive because he's used to that," Popovich said. "He talks to Stan in Detroit. He's used to being listened to, giving ideas.
"We want to hear from everybody so he fits that mold. He's also highly intelligent and does his job very well. We're excited to have him."
No one has yet to be appointed as Wright's replacement in Motown, but if past reshuffles are anything to go by, Van Gundy may look to an in-house promotion to fill the void. We'll keep you updated on the latest in front office changes as they are announced.
Spencer Dinwiddie discusses basketball opportunities in Chicago
Despite being waived by the Bulls earlier this month, Spencer Dinwiddie is still in the mix in Chicago as Ellis reports in a separate piece. The third year guard out of Colorado spoke to assembled media in Las Vegas and talked about the trade that brought him to the Windy City.
"I had vets ahead of me, Stan, obviously ... you know, we were trying to win, and he was more comfortable with vets. That's kind of where it all stands. In limited opportunity, when I was in the rotation and playing more than garbage minutes, usually I performed pretty solidly. I think that's why I'm still in the league right now and why other teams are willing to give me a chance, because I was solid in my limited opportunity."
"You gotta respect (Van Gundy)," Dinwiddie said. "It worked out. We went to the playoffs ... so it worked out last year. I loved my time there, but I'm excited for the new opportunity as well. They say they like me, so we'll see where it goes from here. They'll decide here in summer league. We'll see what happens during the season when I'm fighting for a job."
Spencer was on the Bulls' Las Vegas Summer League team that went 7-0, eventually winning the SL Championship. As the team's sixth man, the former Piston averaged 10.6 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game in a touch above 24 minutes per game. While he may have been solid, his shooting continued to be an issue, converting 36 percent of his field-goals and 25 percent of his triple tries. Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg seemed impressed with Dinwiddie's production, but it has yet to manifest itself in a contract offer.
Tweet of the Week
Know my youngins @CaldwellPope n @iAmSJ putting in that work w/ #USABasketball. Cain't wait for them to bring that experience back to the D— Reggie Jackson (@Reggie_Jackson) July 22, 2016