Smith's versatility could fit either Drummond or Monroe, but not both
First of all, let me say that Smith is really not a good fit for the Pistons, but I think this was the right move. They needed talent. They needed athleticism on the wing. They need versatility at the forward spot. They needed a player who could play defense.
As has been noted, it just doesn't seem like a starting frontcourt of Smith, Monroe, and Drummond will work in today's NBA, due to floor spacing issues. But here's the thing: Smith's athleticism and defense makes him a perfect fit next to Monroe, while Smith's versatility, passing, and average outside shooting makes him a good fit next to Drummond.
So with the addition of Smith, the Pistons have forced themselves into a difficult decision: Monroe or Drummond. It is not a decision they have to make this season or even next season, but they will have to make it eventually. If Monroe learns how to avoid getting his shot blocked around the rim (he should take some lessons from another grounded NBA power forward, Zack Randolph), he could be an Allstar. While Drummond's ceiling is much higher, if he struggles over the next two seasons and puts up DeAndre Jordan-type numbers, the Pistons could easily slide Monroe to center and Smith to power forward, and then trade Drummond for assets that would fit their team better.
I am not saying that they should trade Drummond or Monroe, especially not right way, but I am saying that they might have a tough decision to make in the next few years, and Smith's versatility could fit either direction they go.
...I'm packing my bags and kiss my arse goodbye cone all star break.
Joe Dumars will say "what I got you an all-star?!"
I hope that's not the case but with the pistons track record its the coaches fault. Fire him!!
I think Josh Smith's best fit with the pistons is to start as the three but slide to the 4 when needed. Either that or turn Monroe or Drummond into a 6th man and use Smith's versatility to play with either. But that would leave a hole at the 3. I agree, this signing had to happen but it's a strange fit. Not saying it can't work but Smith will have to show more perimeter skills than he ever did at Atlanta.
They could have just avoided this by not signing Smith...
This is a desperate move without question. There was no need to use up all the cap space to bring a player that doesn't even fit the team. Everyone was raving about the Monroe/Drummond front court. Heck, even Monroe was extremely happy when they drafted Drummond last year and likes playing alongside him. If they think Smith is going to play the 3 next season, they'll get a wake up call in a hurry.
Josh Smith's defensive versatility and overall athleticism is what makes him so valuable. The fact that he can't shoot mid-long range jumpers or put the ball on the floor makes him somewhat a liability in the halfcourt offensive set. He would be such a devastating player if he could improve his shooting and ball-handling...... These are the reasons why he will never be more than a 3rd option on a good team. This was a desperate move for a team that has no direction in the front office and has mis-managed their free agent signings for the last couple of seasons now.
The only 3 players on their team that are worth keeping for the future besides Smith are Drummond, Monroe and Caldwell-Pope. Everyone else (including Brandon Knight) is expendable.
I like branden knight as a sixth man who can play either guard spot and score, basically like ben gordon. Kyle singler is a solid 9th or 10th man but it both are replacable but it wouldnt be bad for them to keep them if they got them at reasonable salaries
I think the best thing that can happen at this point is that Joe Dumars is fired at the end of the season and replaced by a new GM dedicated to our young core of players. I know it sucks for Pistons fans to admit, Joe Dumars is a Pistons legend and he always will be. As a player he was a humble hall of famer. As a GM he had a great run for a number of years. However as time has gone on it is becoming more apparent that he has no plan beyond clearing cap space, throwing shit on the wall, and hoping something sticks. It worked when he first took over because he took a better gamble on younger players with good contracts. His last two big attempts in free agency have landed him players who do not fit within the framework of his roster. The Pistons need a GM with a vision now, not a yes man to an owner that knows nothing about basketball. The Pistons need a strong GM that will tell owner Tom Gores that his pipe dream of adding magical free agents to suddenly get to the Finals will not happen. The Pistons have two golden tickets that fell into their laps through the draft in Monroe and Drummond and they need a GM that understands how to cash them in. Someone who will build around them and not bring in players that are older and redundant to their skill set.
In a way I do feel bad for Joe. He was told to win now and win later, an impossible task. Basically if his team doesn't make the playoffs and look somewhat competitive in the first round then he will be fired and he knows that. You can't blame a guy for doing things to save his job. That is exactly what this deal is, a desperate attempt to save a job. Everyone in the world knows the Pistons are rebuilding except narrow-minded fans who only understand "win now" and the people with power running the Pistons organization. Josh Smith is a good basketball player for another team that needs his defensive skills and rebounding. The Pistons have other pressing needs. They needed to bring in a young point guard or small forward in the 2014 draft and sadly that won't happen, barring injuries. Charlotte will obtain the pick that we desperately needed.
Joe made a smart gamble when he took on players like Hamilton, Billups and Wallace early in his tenure. These young players came with very good, low-risk contracts and were worth a shot. They ended up being incredibly valuable and outperforming their contracts. These are the chances that you want to take on when rebuilding teams. Taking on bad, expensive contracts that do not fit in with the foundation of the team, in an effort to win now, is a horrible strategy. While the Pistons had a great run with these unheralded players it also was a curse in the Joe Dumars era. He always seemed to think if he could get the cap space he could pull off that magic once again. However he overlooked the real genius of his earlier moves that landed him a perennial contender in the East. He overlooked that the genius was in adding good, low-risk players that had a decent chance at outperforming their cost, while also building through the draft. Instead he became the GM that throws a lot of money at high priced free agents with absolutely no regard to team need or fit.
The only positive of this deal is that Smith's contract should be able to be moved when a competent GM takes over next season.
This talk about firing Joe Dumars is a bit ridiculous. He has gotten great value in each of the last four drafts and just signed an Allstar in free agency. The roster isn't shaped yet, but that comes after assets have been accumulated. That doesn't even mention the fact that he shaped a championship roster who contended in the East for half a decade.
No doubt he made some dumb signings, but after the Pistons were sold last season, he said that the previous ownership pushed him into those signings, which is one probable reason that he wasn't fired by that ownership.
He is a good GM, and as Minnesota fans will tell you, good GMs don't grow on trees.
There are smarter ways to spend money and especially in a year when you can lose a key draft choice if you become a fringe playoff team. The timing makes no sense. He has now fudged the last two free agent periods, he has put the Pistons in a position to blow the biggest draft in nearly a decade by losing their first round draft choice, he blew the 2003 draft that also had franchise changing talent. The last great team he put together was a long, long time ago and he is not following that same formula anymore. He is wasting money in free agency as I explained above.
Josh Smith is not an all star, especially at the 3. He has never made an all star game. He didn't receive a lot of interest as a free agent this year even by the team he spent all of those years with. Even if he was a franchise changing player, he is not a good fit for this particular franchise. He is not going to give the Pistons the spacing they need for their two franchise players down low.