"I'm happy for him,'' [Jodie] Meeks said of [Andre] Drummond. "It's a great honor to play on the USA team, and I know he put in a lot of hard work. He has improved a lot between his first and second (NBA) year, and hopefully, he'll do the same in his third year. Hopefully, one day, I'll get a chance to participate in that and be with him.'' [...] "(2016) would be an honor and a dream come true,'' Meeks said. "I know it's a long way down the line, and we still have a full season ahead, but anytime you have a chance to play for your country, it's an honor.''Detroit Free Press
5. Josh Smith, Detroit Pistons Projected 2014-15 WARP: 9.8 --- Smith has enough of a track record that his 1.6 WARP disaster from last season doesn't wreck his forecast going forward. He's still just 28, and healthy, so there is little reason he can't return to his days as a double-digit WARP performer -- if used correctly. That means putting a stop to habits like finishing 17 percent of his possessions with 3-point attempts, even though he made just 26 percent of them. One thing saving Smith's outlook is his RPM profile; it actually was positive on the offensive end and was again well in the black on defense. Stan Van Gundy will figure this out.Bradford Doolittle | ESPN Insider
"(Van Gundy) is a hard-nosed coach, kind of like coach Thibs is," said Augustin, known for his abilities in a pick-and-roll style offense. "He lets you play your game, as long as you play hard. He had Jameer Nelson, when he had Dwight Howard (in Orlando), and I kind of play like Jameer. "They have some good big men. (Van Gundy) wanted guys who can shoot and spread the floor."From the New Orleans Advocate. Augustin spoke at his youth camp at Xavier University in Louisiana -- a few other quotes in there worth reading if you're looking to pass the time.
"We have a beautiful arena, and we have invested tens of millions of dollars over the past three years to modernize and improve that facility," said Barnhill in the statement. "At the same time, we would never close the door on alternatives if they made good sense for our fans, for our team, for our business and for Michigan."Platinum Equity partner Mark Barnhill's statement about the Pistons' plans (or lack thereof) after the Ilitch family announced details of the Red Wings' new arena.
"I feared for my family’s safety," Summers said. "My family went home, but I stayed. I wasn’t scared, per se, but it was concerning not knowing what Putin was gonna do and with Russia trying to come over and take over Ukraine. We didn’t know if he was coming for more of the area or what. Kiev was like the boiling point for the protests. We seen a lot of Molotov cocktails downtown, the city burning. It was interesting."Vince Ellis caught up with former Piston DaJuan Summers, who played through a harrowing experience overseas last season.
Hate the sound of this, hope they're wrong...
5. Which restricted free agent is most likely to change teams?
Thorpe: I get the feeling that Chandler Parsons ...
Ford: Greg Monroe. The Pistons are saying the right things about wanting him back, but everyone knows that it would be better for all parties involved if he moved on. The Pistons want value out of every deal they make, and I'm not sure that will be possible if they try to re-sign Monroe.
Pelton: Isaiah Thomas. The Kings may not even be able to match...
Penn: Greg Monroe. There are very few quality bigs on the market. There are multiple teams with cap space looking for size. If Bosh stays in Miami, they'll look to Greg Monroe. If someone offers him a front-loaded offer sheet, the Pistons will have trouble matching.
Elhassan: Greg Monroe. I've never been sold on how he fits in Detroit, even if the Pistons manage to extricate themselves from Josh Smith. Monroe doesn't have a reliable jumper, and he's not solid defensively. He's better off starting fresh on another team than trying to be a square peg in a round hole for the Pistons.
Karl: Isaiah Thomas and Greg Monroe! Both guys will find a new team that will pay them well and support their continued development. Monroe and Thomas are gettable.
[Cartier Martin] will provide outside shooting, but the No. 1 attraction is Martin’s energy and fire, areas coach Stan Van Gundy says were lacking last season. So it’s a signing to address that weakness.From Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press, who also confirmed that Martin's two-year deal is for the veteran's minimum.
Out in Piston-land, George David did not resign as long-time assistant GM. Right-hand man to Joe Dumars was canned, according to sources. It's Stan Van Gundy's empire and he overpaid Jody Meeks by about $8 million with his $19 million free-agent deal. But you can do that kind of crazy spending for 3-point shooting when you're king.Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News (h/t DBB reader bonerici)
"Silky. That's the best way I can describe Dinwiddie's game. It's like watching someone in a speed-ramped Guy Ritchie movie do the worm and then punch a dude in the jaw. ... He's not so much a guard as he is a ballerina halfback with a panty-droppin' mustache and a respectable collection of leggings."76ers blogger and all-around funny guy Michael Levin
"We have identified some people, we’re about halfway through the interview process. We had said at the press conference we’d give ourselves plenty of time and that July 1 would be our self-imposed deadline. I think we will be well ahead of that but there’s nothing imminent in the next few days."From Stan Van Gundy's radio interview with Matt Dery, transcribed by the Detroit Free Press