Only seven of the coaches hired in the summer of 2013 still remain with the teams that brought them aboard then, Chuck Myron of Hoops Rumors wrote on Thursday. The first coach from that class to get dropped was Maurice Cheeks, who was canned by the Pistons midway through the 2013/14 season. Cheeks lost his gig largely because he couldn’t get through to prized offseason acquisition Josh Smith, but neither interim coach John Loyer or current coach Stan Van Gundy were successful in that regard either. More from Detroit..
- Pistons GM Jeff Bower believes that Stan Van Gundy‘s dual role will help in the development of draft picks, Keith Langlois of NBA.com writes. “Stan has a long-term approach,” Bower said. “He’s got the ability to see a strength in a player and envision how he can work with that player on that strength to make it an even bigger strength. And then what he could take advantage of as a coach on the floor.” There have been many cases in the game’s history where a draft pick doesn’t succeed because of a power struggle between the front office and the coaching staff. Because SVG is a part of both units, there’s no risk of him not giving a fair chance to a rookie.
- Mavericks big man Charlie Villanueva believes that his struggles with the Pistons helped set him up for greater success with Dallas, Earl K. Sneed of Mavs.com writes. “It was just the hard times in Detroit preparing me for a moment like this,” the sharpshooter explained. “I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. Coach (Carlisle) always said to just stay ready and that the opportunity will come, but he just didn’t know when. I just kept working on my craft, stayed sharp, and whenever my name was called I made the most of it.” Villanueva signed a ~$40MM deal with Detroit back in July of 2009 and never lived up to that contract.
- Every conceivable Pistons target at No. 8 or No. 9 will be at the draft combine, including Justise Winslow, Stanley Johnson, Kelly Oubre, and Frank Kaminsky, Langlois tweets. However, the European players who could be under consideration – Kristaps Porzingis and Mario Hazonja – won’t be in attendance.