Tag: Spencer Dinwiddie


Who starts at point for Detroit when Brandon Jennings gets healthy?


Brandon Jennings was the starting point guard for Stan Van Gundy’s Detroit Pistons last season for 41 games — until he tore his Achilles.

Reggie Jackson was brought in with a trade and started the last 27 games at the point for the Pistons, showing some chemistry with Andre Drummond. Then this summer the Pistons gave him a five-year, $80 million contract.

That deal implies that Jackson is locked in as the starter for the Pistons, but what happens when Jennings comes back, gets healthy and starts pushing for minutes? While Jackson put up more points per game last season, Jennings shot better from three, and their PERs were almost identical (19.8 and 19.7). It’s not that clear-cut who should be the starting point guard.

The fourth guy in the Pistons’ point guard rotation, Spencer Dinwiddie (remember they have Steve Blake, too) said he doesn’t know what will happen, speaking to MLive.com.

“When you have two starters and you know only one can start, something’s got to give,” Dinwiddie said. “So I don’t know what’s going to happen. I’m sure Brandon’s coming back to be the best player on the floor. Reggie, I’m sure he feels like he obviously is our franchise guy right now, until ‘Dre signs his max deal. So we’ll see. We’ll see what happens. I can’t tell you what’s going to happen with Brandon and Reggie but everybody’s waiting to see, I’m sure.”

It’s going to be Jackson, but the fit will be interesting.

One solution is to play them at the same time — Van Gundy has said he thinks Jennings and Jackson can play together. It works in theory because the Pistons could go a little smaller and play faster, Jennings can play more two on offense where he has the shot to space the floor, and Jackson is good enough defensively to guard twos. It’s not something they would use all the time — Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Jodie Meeks should get a lot of run at the two — but the combo could work at times.

That said, the more likely option is for the Pistons to play Jennings at the point and show him off and hope to do it before the trade deadline — they would love to move him. He is in the last year of his contract; he wouldn’t be expensive for a team to take on as a rental, and then said team can try to re-sign him next summer. However, moving him after an Achilles injury is not going to be easy, and the Pistons will not likely get much in return.

Detroit is a fascinating story next season. Can Van Gundy bring his vision to Detroit and get this team to take a step forward? How does the offense look with Ersan Ilyasova at the four rather than Greg Monroe? Can they make the playoffs in the East?

What happens with Jennings is just another interesting storyline.

Andrew Wiggins only unanimous All-Rookie first-teamer, Jordan Clarkson tops Marcus Smart for final first-team spot

Andrew Wiggins, Jordan Clarkson

Andrew Wiggins (who won Rookie of the Year), Nikola Mirotic, Nerlens Noel and Elfrid Payton were presumed All-Rookie first-team locks.

It seemed the final spot would come down to Jordan Clarkson and Marcus Smart – and the Lakers guard won out.

All-Rookie first team (first votes-second votes-points)

  • Andrew Wiggins, Minnesota (130-0-260)
  • Nikola Mirotic, Chicago (128-2-258)
  • Nerlens Noel, Philadelphia (125-2-252)
  • Elfrid Payton, Orlando (121-8-250)
  • Jordan Clarkson, L.A. Lakers (74-52-200)

All-Rookie second team (first votes-second votes-points)

  • Marcus Smart, Boston (28-86-142)
  • Zach LaVine, Minnesota (22-91-135)
  • Bojan Bogdanovic, Brooklyn (7-93-107)
  • Jusuf Nurkic, Denver (3-91-97)
  • Langston Galloway, New York (7-58-72)

Other players receiving votes, with point totals (first-place votes in parentheses):

Rodney Hood, Utah, 54 (1); Tarik Black, L.A. Lakers, 28; K.J. McDaniels, Houston, 20; Dante Exum, Utah, 17 (3); Jabari Parker, Milwaukee, 13; Mitch McGary, Oklahoma City, 9; Aaron Gordon, Orlando, 5 (1); Spencer Dinwiddie, Detroit, 4; Jerami Grant, Philadelphia, 4; Kostas Papanikolaou, Houston, 4; T.J. Warren, Phoenix, 4; Damjan Rudez, Indiana, 3; Tyler Ennis, Milwaukee, 2; Joe Ingles, Utah, 2; JaKarr Sampson, Philadelphia, 2; James Ennis, Miami, 1; Cory Jefferson, Brooklyn, 1; Tyler Johnson, Miami, 1; Shabazz Napier, Miami, 1; Nik Stauskas, Sacramento, 1; James Young, Boston, 1

Overall, the teams are pretty spot on, and the top vote-getters after the second team are deserving of strong consideration.

But get further down the list of players who got votes? Someone has to explain to me how anyone could consider many of these players a top-10 rookie. Strangely, a quick glance of the voting breakdown shows few examples of homerism in these outliers.

Report: Pistons aggressively seeking guard, looking at Jarrett Jack

Brooklyn Nets v Detroit Pistons

The Nets are reportedly close to acquiring Reggie Jackson for Brook Lopez.

That would create a point guard logjam in Brooklyn, which also has Deron Williams and Jarrett Jack.

The Wizards have been mentioned as a Jack suitor, but they might have competition.

Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated:

The Pistons’ interest in Norris Cole was already reported, but here’s a different spin from Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press:


Jack would be a talent upgrade for Detroit, but he’s guaranteed for $6.3 million next season. The Pistons already have Brandon Jennings, D.J. Augustin and Spencer Dinwiddie under guaranteed contracts for next season. When Jennings gets healthy, that’s pretty crowded.

Stan Van Gundy has said he won’t sacrifice the future for the present. I doubt Jack makes him re-think that.

Report: Pistons looking into Norris Cole trade

Miami Heat v Detroit Pistons

With Kemba Walker injured, the Hornets are reportedly exploring a trade for Norris Cole.

Charlotte might have competition.

The Pistons – whose starting point guard, Brandon Jennings, is also injured – are eying the Heat point guard, too.

Chris Haynes of Cleveland.com:

The Detroit Pistons are looking into the possibility of trading for Miami Heat point guard Norris Cole, league sources tell Northeast Ohio Media Group.

Miami has sent the word out that the 26-year-old defensive specialist can be had. There’s nothing imminent at this point and talks have been described as “exploratory,” a source said.

Stan Van Gundy said the Pistons will probably add a third point guard behind D.J. Augustin and Spencer Dinwiddie, but the president/coach also said he wouldn’t give up any future assets or draft picks for one.

Acquiring Cole would almost certainly require Detroit relinquishing something of long-term value. However, Cole could also give the Pistons returns beyond this season, so I’m not sure the strictness of Van Gundy’s self-imposed guideline.

Cole, 26, is averaging 6.2 points and 3.4 assists in 24.4 minutes per game. He’s quick and a solid defender, but his 3-point percentage has troublingly regressed to 24.2 percent after nearing league average the last two years.

He’ll be a free agent after the season, a restricted one if extended a qualifying offer. His qualifying offer will be $4,433,683 if he starts 18 more games or plays 1,011 more minutes this season – or $3,036,927 if he doesn’t.

Dwyane Wade’s injury could affect Miami’s willingness to deal Cole. If Wade misses time, the Heat will likely use Cole more often with Mario Chalmers or Shabazz Napier in two-point guard lineups. Plus, they might hesitate to trade a useful player to a team they’re in playoff competition with. That applies to both Detroit and Charlotte.

The Pistons and Heat have plenty of low-paid players to shuffle if they want to make a deal. But before the exact mechanics get worked out, Van Gundy has to decide whether he’s willing to give up something for help now.

Russell Westbrook unleashes devastating dunk on Pistons (VIDEO)

Russell Westbrook, Kyle Singler

Russell Westbrook plays in fifth gear and that puts a lot of pressure on a defense to get back and get in front of him in transition. The Pistons’ Spencer Dinwiddie and Josh Smith got back. But the part about getting between him and the basket, that could use some work.

The result was one of the better dunks of the season — Westbrook was ferocious.

The Thunder went on to win a close game, 96-94, behind 27 points including a key late three from Kevin Durant.