NBA AM: Ranking the Central Division -- Basketball Insiders
There is real talent on this roster, and the Detroit Pistons added even more of it this offseason in signing Ish Smith as backup point guard and Boban Marjanovic as part of the frontcourt rotation. Rookie Henry Ellenson was a steal almost two-thirds of the way into the first-round of June's draft too, but none of these guys are what make the Pistons so good this season. Andre Drummond, Reggie Jackson, Tobias Harris, Marcus Morris, Stanley Johnson and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, however, finally look like they're ready to come of age together.
There's another three paragraphs of thoughts on Detroit in the link -- but do be warned! They have Detroit finishing fourth in the Central Division... (paging hypnowheel...paging...paging)
A way too early ranking of the Eastern Conference -- Bullets Forever
Bullets Forever has Detroit finishing third in the Central Division but a cozy (enough) fifth overall in the East.
The Pistons bring back essentially the same roster that they had last season after re-signing All-Star center Andre Drummond. In somewhat of an under the radar move, the Pistons acquired Boban Marjanovic from the Spurs to play the backup center position. He is still somewhat of an unknown as he didn't get too much playing time in San Antonio, however, he's coming from the best culture in the NBA and will practice against one of the best centers in the NBA in Andre Drummond.
Tobias Harris and Marcus Morris will now have the entire offseason to get acclimated with the team rather than learning on the fly in just 30 games prior to the postseason. The Pistons have a nice core of players and young guys such as Stanley Johnson and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope who should continue to get better with time.
Expect a big step forward from the Pistons this season.
Pistons' Michael Gbinije gets valuable experience at Olympics -- Detroit Free Press
Michael Gbinije and the Nigerian national basketball team won't advance to the medal round at the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics, but the Detroit Pistons rookie did pick up some valuable playing experience.
"He got hurt in our camp, but the only issue he has had down there (in Rio) is he got sick and he missed their second game," Stan Van Gundy said today. "He has come back and played in Games 3 and 4. He has played well. His numbers have been good in Games 3 and 4. He has one more today. They cannot move on, so today (Brazil) will be his last one. Overall, I think it has been good experience for him.
"He has been playing off the ball at the two (shooting guard) and three (small forward). He hasn't really played any point (guard). He has handled the ball some, but generally he's out there with another guard."
Detroit Pistons: Stanley Johnson Could Explode Next Season -- Hoops Habit
The Kool-Aid splashing over Stanimal is of the super sticky variety with this link. And for another positive outlook, check out Hardwood Paroxysm's Sophomore Crush post on Stanley here.
Australia, France making presence (and future) felt -- NBA.com (Aldridge)
Australia has been on the periphery of international competition for a generation, but has yet to win an Olympic medal. The Boomers are determined to end that drought during these games, having clinched second place in Group A with a 4-1 record after defeating Venezuela on Sunday. Their only loss was a hard-fought 10-point loss to the U.S. men last week. Australia led at the half, the first time the U.S men had trailed in an Olympic game at halftime since 2004.
Australia's had NBA players like Andrew Bogut, Patty Mills and Matthew Dellavedova to build around the last few cycles, but it's the future that's most exciting. Young vets like Joe Ingles (Utah), Cameron Bairstow and Aron Baynes (both with Detroit) are already steeped in the national culture and playing for the Boomers.
Quick -- someone tell David Aldridge that Cameron Bairstow is not with Detroit any longer. Good read though.
Hey all -- for those of you trying to keep fit this summer (or whatever season it is for you), how's it coming along? If not that amazing, don't fret. Think about this:
"If you are what you eat, I'd rather be thin like a French fry than round like a head of lettuce!" -- Randy Glasbergen