The Detroit Pistons finished a disappointing 37-45 last season. As the team looks to improve and regain a spot in the playoffs, Detroit Bad Boys is examining three things each player can do to improve their game and improve the chance the team wins. Whether you’re new to the game or a season Pistons watcher, these are important factors that anyone can appreciate and will help you understand and evaluate Detroit’s team as we get ready for the 2017-18 season.
1. Consistent Minutes
This is the obvious one. Boban has been one of the most prolific per minute players in the history of the league. Yet he played less than 300 minutes last season. Yes, the Pistons had Andre Drummond as their franchise player last season and Aron Baynes was an excellent backup, but at some point you’ve got to find minutes for a guy posting 23 points and 16 rebounds per 36 minutes. With the departure of Baynes, there’s no barrier for Boban this season. And it should be fuuuuuuun.
Stan Van Gundy has acknowledged that there may be a temptation to be reactive with Boban on a situational basis, pulling the big man if other teams try exploiting him and his lack of mobility on the defensive end. But he’s also acknowledged that those aren’t good temptations, that it’s better to make the opponent pay to try to stop Boban on the other end.
When Boban gets the ball, Boban shoots. That’s fine, dude’s nearly impossible to stop as a scorer. But the standards “but” against Boban’s numbers are that he’s playing against backups. That’s not the thing. The thing is that he was rarely double-teamed last season. Teams didn’t really factor Boban into their game plan. So the Pistons would isolate to Boban and let the other team’s big man try to stop him.
But when help did come, Boban wasn’t able to respond. With more consistent minutes this season, teams are going to account for Boban when they come to Detroit. It’ll put more demands on his decision making abilities on the block and it’ll be up to Boban to respond.
3. Three-Point Shot
Come on, right? Yeah, I know it should be something about his lateral movement on defense and pick and roll defense with a shooting big out there. But this is more fun.
Folks have talked about Andre Drummond adding a three point shot after he chucked a few terrible attempts in some summer games. That’s an awful idea. But Boban can shoot it. He’s a great free throw shooter and clips popped up with him tossing up threes in shoot arounds.
Do it, do it!
He didn’t take any threes during his play with the FIBA tournament. So I’m not optimistic. But a 7-foot-4 guy who you can’t stop at the rim, by sending to the free throw line, or from behind the arc? What do you think about that, Tyler?