Modeled after ESPN’s 5-on-5, Patrick and I will answer three questions about a Pistons-related topic.
1. Who was Joe Dumars’ best draft pick?
Dan Feldman: Tayshaun Prince. Picking Prince 23rd in any draft would have been a steal, but 23rd in the 2002 draft is special. None of the 12 players picked before him ever amounted to much in the NBA. To find a near All-Star in that barren wasteland is special.
Patrick Hayes: Mehmet Okur. Since 1990, Okur is one of just 17 players who weren’t first round picks to make an All-Star team. Dumars’ strength in drafts has been finding talent late, and although Okur had his best years after leaving Detroit as a free agent, finding an All-Star big man in the second round is probably the best value pick Dumars has made.
Matt Moore: Tayshaun Prince. Greg Monroe is my first answer, because I hate obvious answers. But come on. Prince will have his jersey in the rafters. Total production, championship ring, highlight reel play (The Block).
2. Who was Joe Dumars’ worst draft pick?
Dan Feldman: Darko. I’m convinced nearly every other would have drafted Darko with the No. 2 pick in 2003, but that doesn’t completely absolve Dumars. The next three picks – Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade – became stars, and even the No. 6 pick, Chris Kaman, made an All-Star game. Dumars could have picked a name out of a hat and done better.
Patrick Hayes: The entire 2009 draft. Taking Austin Daye at No. 15 over Ty Lawson, Jrue Holiday, Darren Collison, Jeff Teague and Eric Maynor will always be the high-profile miss from this draft, but taking DaJuan Summers in the second round at No. 35 when DeJuan Blair was still on the board was worse. Add giving away a pretty solid player in Chase Budinger to Houston, and not even finding Jonas Jerebko at No. 39 can salvage this mess of a draft.
Matt Moore: /desperately searches for a way around the Darko pick. /still searching. /seriously, gotta find one. /it’s here somewhere, I know it. / Nope. Darko.
3. How do you rate Joe Dumars’ total draft record?
Dan Feldman: Excellent. Darko, Rodney White and Mateen Cleaves were high-profile busts, but even with them included, Dumars has done a quality job. He’s been hurt in the draft by the Pistons’ extended run of success – even good picks in the 20s probably aren’t game changers – but with more high picks coming, I’m convinced the draft will be a reliable source of talent for the rebuilding Pistons.
Patrick Hayes: More good than bad. He’s missed on a couple of high profile picks, but he’s consistently found legitimate rotation players all over the draft – Okur, Brian Cardinal, Tayshaun Prince, Amir Johnson, Arron Afflalo, Rodney Stuckey, Jason Maxiell, Jerebko, Carlos Delfino and Greg Monroe give him enough quality over the years to make a case that he knows how to identify talent in the draft. Whether he knows how to develop it is another discussion.
Matt Moore: Really well, actually. Darko busted but still starts in this league all these years later. Jerebko, steal. Afflalo, steal. Knight, quality. Monroe, future All-Star. Delfino, capable player. Dumars can draft. He just never puts himself in a position to draft multiple picks to reform the team.
What do you think? Share your answers in the comments.