Pistons Notes: Jennings, Johnson, Morris, Tolliver

Brandon Jennings, set for free agency at season’s end, is willing to accept a bench role upon his return from a torn Achilles, which is reportedly three or four weeks away, writes Terry Foster of The Detroit News. Reggie Jackson‘s five-year, $80MM deal has firmly entrenched him as the starting point guard.

“Always in my head [I am a starter],” Jennings said. “But sometimes you’ve got to take the back seat and do what is best for the team.”

Jennings said he’d go after the Sixth Man of the Year award if he can’t find his way into the starting five at some point, Foster adds. See more from the Motor City:

  • Stanley Johnson made winning a starting job at the beginning of the season a priority, but now he, too, is OK with coming off the bench, MLive’s David Mayo notes. He’s seeing 21.3 minutes per game so far this season but came close to 30 minutes in a win against the Rockets this week. “I’m always competing for a starting position,” Johnson said. “Since I got here, I’ve always said that I’m always competing for a starting position. But I’m not going to be the player who comes off the bench and says, ‘Aw, I should start.’ Thirty minutes is 30 minutes; 35 minutes … it doesn’t matter what minutes you’re playing as long as you’re still getting your minutes. If I can have starter’s production in my bench minutes, I think I’m doing the same thing as starting.”
  • Wednesday’s game against the Suns didn’t evoke much emotion for Marcus Morris, who was upset this summer after Phoenix traded him to the Pistons. Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press has the details. “Like I said before, I’m in Detroit,” Morris said. “No thoughts of being in Phoenix come to my mind anymore.”
  • It’s a key season for Anthony Tolliver, who’s poised to hit free agency this coming summer, as Mayo examines in a separate piece. The 30-year-old Larry Fox client has carved out an NBA career in large measure because of his outside shooting, but he contends that he can do more than just nail 3-pointers, as he tells Mayo. He’s been an important scorer off the bench for the Pistons since they traded for him nearly a year ago, Mayo writes, but his points per game, as well as his vaunted shooting, are off this season.

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