Rookie Fit Preview: Detroit Pistons


  After landing prolific prospect Cade Cunningham, the Pistons showed flashes here and there throughout the 2021-22 season, but couldn’t quite put anything together.

  Cunningham was electric nearly all season, getting off to a slow start before settling in and becoming one of the best and most exciting young players in the league.

  It wouldn’t be enough however, as Detroit finished 23-59, the third worst record in the league,

  Jaden Ivey (Guard | No. 5 Overall)

  A hyper-explosive, do-it-all guard, Ivey is slated to immediately be one of the most exciting young players in the league.

  Jalen Duren (Center | No. 13 Overall)

  One of the youngest players in the class, Duren is physically imposing, traditional-style center.

  Gabriele Procida (Wing | No. 36 Overall)

  A nicely framed, smooth swing player who can likely plug-and-play into several different lineup configurations.

  There’s going to be plenty of available minutes in Detroit this season. Ivey will be an immediate starter alongside Cunningham in the backcourt. 

  Both being ball-dominant guards, they fit could take awhile to work out the kinks, but they also both excel at a variety of skill and could fairly easily mesh well. One thing is certain: there’s plenty of talent in the Detroit backcourt.

  Duren will see plenty of minutes nightly. If he doesn’t start immediately, he’ll likely eventually insert himself into the lineup. In the least, he'll be play-finisher, rebounder and occasional shot-blocker.

  Procida, likely functioning as a connecting wing piece, could take longer, but still has the opportunity should he stand out early.

  Realistically, the Pistons could land a first and second All-Rookie team selection.

  Fit-wise, Ivey will need some adjusting, but entering the NBA he’s already in the upper echelon in terms of athleticism and even talent. I fully expect Ivey to snag one of the first-team spots.

  Duren will be interesting. He’s younger and still improving, but again, will find success in his physicality alone. There’s several different routes Duren’s NBA tenure could go, but ultimately I don’t see him being the flashiest player, which could lead to a few less accolades.

  Roster-wise, Duren should be a fine plug-and-play, traditional center piece for years to come.

  Procida might have a tough time adjusting to the NBA initially, but I have a hard time not seeing him thrive eventually. He’s got a relentlessly smooth game with a clean handle, shot and passing chops, and will one day be a valuable role piece.

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