Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em

The 2013-14 NBA season is winding down, and the Detroit Pistons are sitting outside of the playoffs for the fifth straight season.

What personnel deserves to return next season? Horsepower takes you through “Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em” where the coach, general manager and each player are evaluated and given a final result of ‘trash ‘em or ‘keep ‘em.

* * *

Joe Dumars

Dumars has been the general manager of the Pistons since 2000, where he won an NBA championship and assembled a team that reached the Eastern Conference Finals six years in a row.

However, Detroit basketball has been irrelevant for several years in large part due to Dumars’ poor decision making.

Signing Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva set the franchise back financially, but Dumars had an opportunity to redeem himself this past offseason when Tom Gores gave him the green light to spend big money.

Dumars went ahead and signed Josh Smith to the biggest contract in Pistons history, as well as Chauncey Billups, Luigi Datome and he also traded for Brandon Jennings.

Those moves, combined with the draft selection of Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, led to playoff expectations for the Pistons and those expectations were not met.

It is time for someone new to take control of the organization.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em?  Trash ‘Em

* * *

John Loyer

Loyer is a first-time head coach who stepped in once Maurice Cheeks got fired after just 50 games.

During his short stint as head coach, Loyer has gone 6-18 and has really struggled to improve the performance of the team.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Trash ‘Em

* * *

Josh Smith

Smith signed a four-year, $54 million deal this past offseason. Smith this season is averaging 16.2 points per game and seven rebounds per game.

Those numbers are decent, but Smith consistently puts up poor shots and puts forth a less than ideal effort.

Smith is only 28-years-old, but him and Greg Monroe have not been able to get in sync this season as a small and power forward combo.

It will be tough to unload his contract, but the Pistons can not have Monroe, Smith and Drummond on the court together. One of them needs to go and Smith would be the ideal candidate.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Trash ‘Em

* * *

Charlie Villanueva

Villanueva has only played in 18 games this season and is averaging less than six points per game.

Dumars signed Villanueva to a five-year, $37.7 million deal, and that deal expires once this season ends.

Villanueva will go down as one of Dumars’ worst signings of all time.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Trash ‘Em

* * *

Rodney Stuckey

Stuckey is another player with an expiring contract after season’s end.

Stuckey has had a mediocre year where he spent some time as a Sixth Man of the Year candidate.

He is a great scorer and could be a productive bench player for a contending team. This season he makes $8.5 million and is the third highest paid Piston.

I would not expect his value to decrease, and frankly he is not doing much to help the Pistons win games.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Trash ‘Em

* * *

Brandon Jennings

Detroit traded Brandon Knight, Khris Middleton and Viacheslav Kravtsov to the Milwaukee Bucks in exchange for Jennings.

Jennings is only 24-years-old and is going through the best season of his career. He is averaging 15.7 points per game and just under eight assists per game.

He has progressed as a point guard nicely this season and is still improving. One of his biggest struggles this season has been his leadership qualities on the court, but that is something that can be fixed.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em

* * *

Jonas Jerebko

Jerebko was drafted in 2009 and has never been able to get into the groove of the NBA.

He has one more season left on his contract for $4.5 million.

If they can get rid of him for a second round pick it would be a decent move, but holding onto him as an expiring contract for the next trade deadline would not be the worst decision either.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Trash ‘Em

* * *

Greg Monroe

Monroe has been one of the Pistons’ best players since joining the team back in 2010. He provides a great low post offensive presence and is a very gifted passer.

Monroe is a restricted free-agent this summer and will be a hot commodity for several teams looking for a power forward.

He is not worth a max contract, but if management can find a way to get rid of J-Smoove, him and Andre Drummond could be a formidable backcourt for many years to come.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em

* * *

Will Bynum

This season Bynum is averaging the second most minutes in his career and is averaging close to nine points and four assists per game.

Bynum has one more year left on his contract where he is set to earn $2.9 million. Rookie Peyton Siva could push him for playing time next season, but expiring deals are valuable.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em

* * *

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

He was the Pistons’ first round pick in 2013. He is not going anywhere.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em

* * *

Chauncey Billups

This is an interesting one. Billups has only played in 19 games this season due to a few knee injuries.

He has not had the role on the court that he probably hoped for, but he can still be an important player going forward. He also has a club option for next season that will probably be declined, but he could still stay with the organization.

The Pistons will need a new head coach, and Billups could be a surprise candidate.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em (as some sort of coach)

* * *

Andre Drummond

This is about as obvious as they come.

Drummond is a future All-Star and has the potential to be one of the best players in the league.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em

* * *

Luigi Datome

Datome signed with the Pistons this past offseason, but has not gotten much of an opportunity to play.

He was named the Italian League’s MVP in 2013 and is known for his three-point shooting abilities.

His numbers this season are not something to admire, but a new coach could build him up into a serviceable role player.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em

* * *

Kyle Singler

Singler has spent a large part of this season starting at the shooting guard spot.

This is less than ideal and shows how poorly of a job Dumars did assembling a team, but Singler has had a decent year.

He has played in 74 games this season and is averaging just under 10 points per game. Singler is one of the team’s’ best three-point shooters and should have a role going forward.

By no means should he be a starter, but he can make a positive impact.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em

* * *

Josh Harrellson

Harrellson was signed last offseason as a backup center and the last player to fill the roster.

He is not the most talented player in the world, but he can shoot from anywhere, is an above-average rebounder and will come cheap.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em

* * *

Tony Mitchell and Peyton Siva

Both of these players are currently rookies who have not gotten much of a chance to prove themselves, but there is a reason Dumars drafted them.

Siva is a proven winner and Mitchell is arguably the most athletic player in the NBA.

There is no need to give up on two second-round projects yet, especially since they are on their rookie deals.

Trash ‘Em or Keep ‘Em? Keep ‘Em


Cameron Billes is the host of Horsepower for Impact Sports.


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