Derrick Rose

Former Heat star Chris Bosh vs. Bulls
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Report: Chris Bosh initially committed to Bulls in 2010 free agency

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The Bulls’ plan in 2010 free agency: Secure a commitment from Chris Bosh then use that as a springboard to land LeBron James and/or Dwyane Wade.

Did it almost work?

Wade said he and LeBron eyed Chicago before all three stars eventually landed with the Heat. And apparently Bosh expressed interest in joining the Bulls, too.

Nick Friedell of ESPN:

Chris Bosh, according to more than one person in the organization, said that, “I’m coming to play for the Bulls.” Straight up. He said, “I’m coming to play for the Bulls. This is where I’m going to be.”

You talk to people in that Bulls organization, including former players, Chris Bosh was coming to the Bulls. Straight up. Chris Bosh and the Bulls were supposed to be together, at least in Chicago’s mind.

As far as the Bulls were concerned, they felt like they had a commitment – at least some people in the organization did – from Chris Bosh. They felt like Dwyane Wade would follow, that they hoped that that would work out.

I don’t know precisely what Bosh said. I do know this: Sometimes, people hear what they want to hear.

But this wouldn’t be the only example of Bosh leading a team on just to sign elsewhere. In 2014, the Rockets acted as if they knew Bosh was coming – until he got a five-year max contract from the Heat. Maybe Houston and Chicago were both wrong. Or maybe Bosh dropped hints – or more – to maximize his leverage.

Back to 2010… Miami had a more concrete plan for acquiring all three stars. So, they went there and became a super team that topped Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah and the Bulls.

A couple years later, Rose got hurt, and Chicago fell off. It was a tough outcome for the Bulls – and it must especially sting if they thought they would be the super team.

Troy Weaver takes over as GM, looking to ‘restore’ Pistons

Troy Weaver Pistons
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DETROIT — The timing eventually worked out for Troy Weaver and the Detroit Pistons.

The Pistons introduced Weaver as their new general manager on a video conference Monday. The former Oklahoma City Thunder executive joins a Detroit team that was interested in him previously – and he takes over a GM spot that was vacant for a couple years.

“We had actually tried to talk to Troy a couple years ago. OKC wasn’t quite ready to let him go,” Pistons owner Tom Gores said. “So he’s been on our radar for a while.”

The Pistons shook up their front office two years ago. Stan Van Gundy had been the coach and team president, and after Detroit moved on from him, there was no official GM. Ed Stefanski took over the front office, and Dwane Casey was hired as coach.

Now Weaver will fill the GM role, with Stefanski remaining as a senior advisor to Gores.

“Troy, Ed and Dwane will work on a day-to-day basis with each other,” Gores said. “Troy will have normal, and even higher than normal, GM responsibilities.”

Weaver said he felt loyal to the Thunder and wanted to help bring a championship to Oklahoma City – but he thought now the fit was right with the Pistons.

The Pistons haven’t won a playoff game since 2008, although Weaver described the situation as a “restoring” and not a rebuild. The Pistons went 20-46 this season and traded Andre Drummond in February. They hope to have more flexibility going forward.

“We didn’t have a lot of cap room at the time when Ed came on, so we felt like we really needed to clean things up,” Gores said. “I think he did a great job. … The reason Ed did not come on as GM, we had decided that Ed was going to be one level kind of above that, and that we needed to leave that spot open for our next 10, 15 years, for somebody like Troy.”

Although the Pistons dealt Drummond and bought out point guard Reggie Jackson, they still have an expensive star on the roster in Blake Griffin. Weaver mentioned Griffin and guard Derrick Rose immediately when asked about Detroit’s roster.

“Those guys have had some injury history, and they’re looking forward to building their careers back, so that stood out. Excited to get them healthy and help us move forward,” Weaver said. “Then the second piece of it is the young players on the roster – Sekou (Doumbouya), (Luke) Kennard, Bruce Brown, Svi (Mykhailiuk).”

Weaver did not want to discuss forward Christian Wood because of his free agency.

The Pistons announced the hiring of the 52-year-old Weaver last week. He spent the past 12 seasons with the Thunder, including three-plus years as vice president of basketball operations. He served eight seasons as vice president/assistant general manager.

Weaver, Gores, Casey, Stefanski and Pistons vice chairman Arn Tellem were all on the video conference Monday.

“I always recognized Troy as one of the top talent evaluators – you just look at the finished products in OKC, he had a big part of doing that. Not only that, he’s a man of his word,” Casey said. “He’s genuine, he’s real, and I will say this, and in today’s time, with all the unrest, here’s an opportunity for an African American man to be named to this position, and I’m going to credit Tom and Arn and Ed for opening up the door for the opportunity for him to step in.”

Gores was asked about the importance of diversifying the front office with this hire.

“Did we put an emphasis, and make it a priority? Yes,” Gores said. “But at the same time, can’t take an ounce away from Troy. He was the best person in the world for this job.”

Thunder’s Troy Weaver is reportedly favored to become Pistons GM

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His name has been at or near the top of the “next guy in line to be a GM somewhere” list for a long time, and he’s interviewed/been considered for multiple jobs. It looks like Tory Weaver finally will get his chance in Detroit.

Weaver, who had been mentioned as a candidate before, is the frontrunner to become the Pistons’ GM, something first reported by Marc Stein of the New York Times and confirmed by others.

Weaver is currently the vice president of basketball operations and the No. 2 guy with the Thunder, behind Sam Presti. Weaver has been there a decade and would only leave for a job that’s a promotion in title and power.

Ed Stefanski is in charge of basketball operations in Detroit, he is the man hired to rebuild the Pistons. He has the ultimate hammer, but was hired as a consultant to the owner and may want to return to more of that role. The Pistons have been looking for an experienced person to step into the general manager role, and Weaver fits the bill.

Presti’s Thunder front office has produced a number of people poached by other organizations. Most recently, the Knicks pulled Frank Zanin out of Oklahoma City to be part of Leon Rose‘s staff.

Once hired, Weaver and the Thunder front office would have big decisions to make. Stefanski traded Andre Drummond during the season, whether Blake Griffin and Derrick Rose should follow Drummond out the door to jump start the rebuild becomes the big question.

Pistons reportedly interested in Tayshaun Prince, Chauncey Billups as assistant GM

Chauncey Billups
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Ed Stefanski has the hammer in Detroit. First hired as a senior adviser to owner Tom Gores, he quickly became the head of basketball operations and is now the man in charge trying to rebuild the Pistons.

Detroit has not hired a general manager to work with Stefanski, but it has some serious ideas who should be an assistant GM serving under whomever they hire, reports Omari Sankofa II of the Detroit Free Press.

Former Pistons forward Tayshaun Prince, who is currently the vice president of basketball affairs for the Memphis Grizzlies, is a candidate for the assistant GM job.

The organization would also welcome a reunion with Chauncey Billups, who has maintained that he is interested in being hired only as general manager, according to a source. The Pistons would prefer to hire Billups, who has no NBA executive experience, as an assistant, where he could learn the ins and outs of working in a front office.

Both Prince and Billups would be good hires (although it doesn’t sound like Billups would take that job).

However, first the Pistons need to hire a GM. Then said GM should have a significant say in who his top assistant will be. The Pistons are reportedly looking for someone with experience as the GM and some of the names in the rumor mill are former Suns GM Ryan McDonough, the Thunder’s Troy Weaver, the Nets’ Jeff Peterson, the Clippers’ Mark Hughes, and there are others.

Once the Pistons get their front office in place, they have some big decisions to make. Stefanski traded Andre Drummond, whether Blake Griffin and Derrick Rose will follow Drummond out the door are the next big questions.

2020 PBT Awards: Sixth Man of the Year

Clippers Montrezl Harrell and Lou Williams and Thunder guard Dennis Schroder
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The NBA regular season might be finished. Heck, the entire NBA season might be finished. Even if play resumes with regular-season games, there’d likely be an abridged finish before the playoffs (which will also likely be shortened).

So, we’re making our 2019-20 award picks now. If the regular season somehow lasts long enough to reconsider our choices, we’ll do that. But here are our selections on the assumption the regular season is over.

Kurt Helin

1.  Montrezl Harrell, Clippers

2.  Dennis Schroder, Thunder

3.  Derrick Rose, Pistons

A Clipper gets my vote, and for the first time in years, it’s not Lou Williams (who would be fourth on my ballot). Montrezl Harrell improved his game this year defensively and he continues to bring energy and grit off the bench that has made the Clippers’ second unit one of the most feared in the league. Schroder had a fantastic season, mostly when paired in a three-guard lineup with Chris Paul and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Rose faded a little at the end and the Pistons didn’t win much, but he averaged 18.1 points a game and was the team’s best player for chunks of the season.

Dan Feldman

1. Montrezl Harrell, Clippers

2. Dennis Schroder, Thunder

3. Christian Wood, Pistons

After finishing a deserved third for this award last year, Montrezl Harrell improved his scoring skill and played stingier defense while maintaining his energetic style. That moved him past Clippers reserve teammate and reigning Sixth Man of the Year Lou Williams. Harrell and Williams work well in tandem, but it seems Harrell has taken a little more ownership of their shared production.

Dennis Schroder scored more effectively than ever. He also diversified his all-around game to fit with the Thunder’s other point guards, Chris Paul and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Schroder absolutely deserves credit for helping make that trio work.

Christian Wood narrowly topped Bucks guards George Hill and Donte DiVincenzo, who both did plenty to help replace Malcolm Brogdon. Wood made so many productive plays inside and out, especially as a starter after the Pistons traded Andre Drummond. That’s part of being a good reserve, stepping up when the starter is unavailable.

Keith Smith

1. Dennis Schroder, Thunder

2. Montrezl Harrell, Clippers

3. Lou Williams, Clippers

It seemed like this might be another year where the two Clippers could have split the award, but Dennis Schroder was just a bit better than both. In his second year coming off the Thunder bench, Schroder has put together the best season of his career. He’s averaging 19 points per game, while shooting 46.8% from the field overall and 38.1% from three, both career highs. And he’s also averaging 4.1 assists per game and 3.7 rebounds per game. To top it off, Schroder is regularly a part of the closing lineup for the surprising Thunder.

L.A.’s two bench stars could be mainstays on this ballot if they stay in reserve roles with the Clippers. Williams has hit Jamal Crawford-territory, where award could be named for him. He had another outstanding scoring season at 18.7 points per game, but what stood out was Williams’ career-best 5.7 assists per game. Harrell also continued to impress with 18.6 points on 58% shooting, to go along with 7.1 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game.