I imagine it is not often that a team’s leading scorer is one of the least talked about players on the roster coming into a season, but that just might be the case with Jerami Grant and the Detroit Pistons.
I even find myself getting lost in conversations and Summer League breakdowns of Cade Cunningham, Killian Hayes, Saddiq Bey and even our mythical hero Luka Garza. It seems like the only time Grant really came up was when another national sports publication was linking him to some potential trade that definitely isn’t going to happen.
Luckily enough for us, or at least me, it only took one pre-season game for Grant to remind us how good he was last season AND that this is a big season for him to show he is every bit as good as what he showed in 2020-21, if not even better.
Inside the Arc
We know Jerami Grant is a good 3-point shooter, and I believe we will continue to see him shoot the ball at a good clip from behind the arc this year, maybe even more efficiently. Where I think we really need to see him make a jump this season is inside the arc. What does Grant’s pull-up jumper game look like? Is he utilizing ball screens more? What does his efficiency at the rim look like? And two of the biggest aspects I am keeping my eyes on are how often he is able to get to the free-throw line and how well he creates for teammates when opposing teams run extra defenders at him. Take what you will from pre-season but we at least got a glimpse at the answers to some of these questions, and I break it all down right here.
Defense and Rebounding
I will admit that maybe I am asking too much but I want to continue to see Grant be one of those “all-around” players. I think we have gotten that from him on the defensive end and will continue to do so, BUT I have to admit that he leaves something to be desired on the boards, at least for me. As the Pistons seem to look like a team that will struggle on the defensive board this season, that is an aspect of Grant’s game I would love to see take a step forward from last season.
As I said, I am not sure how much stock we can put into the preseason but the great thing is we will no longer have to start every conversation with “I know it’s Summer League” or “I know it’s pre-season” for much longer as we get to see our Pistons playing the real thing on the 20th!