Pistons hold steady in ESPN’s Future Power Rankings (or a nice way of saying they’ve bottomed out)

Chad Ford and John Hollinger of ESPN.com:

The Future Power Rankings are ESPN Insider’s projection of the on-court success expected for each team in the 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons.


PLAYERS (0 to 600 points): Current players and their potential for the future, factoring in expected departures

MANAGEMENT (0 to 200 points): Quality and stability of front office, ownership, coaching

MONEY (0 to 200 points): Projected salary-cap situation; ability and willingness to exceed cap and pay luxury tax

MARKET (0 to 100 points): Appeal to future acquisitions based on team quality, franchise reputation, city’s desirability as a destination, market size, taxes, business and entertainment opportunities, arena quality, fans

DRAFT (0 to 100 points): Future draft picks; draft positioning

Oh, boy. I’m sure these measures will cast the Pistons in a favorable light. No? No.

28. Detroit Pistons | Future Power Rating: 400

PLAYERS 150 (26th)

MANAGEMENT 78 (18th)

MONEY 56 (23rd)

MARKET 26 (26th)

DRAFT 90 (3rd)

The Pistons hit near-rock bottom last March and appear stuck there a year later. The good news? There’s nowhere to go but up and there are signs the Pistons could be heading that direction soon.

Detroit actually moved up a spot from 27th to 26th in the roster category thanks to the addition of rookie Brandon Knight. Pair him with an emerging Greg Monroe and some other young pieces — Rodney Stuckey, Jonas Jerebko and possibly Austin Daye — and the Pistons do have some talent.

We’re also very positive about their future draft possibilities. The team desperately needs size and there are a number of intriguing big men at the top of the 2012 NBA draft, led by Kentucky’s shot-blocking machine Anthony Davis. If the Pistons can land him (or UConn’s Andre Drummond or Kansas’ Thomas Robinson) the impact on the court should be immediate.

The addition of new owner Tom Gores also is a positive. For the past few seasons GM Joe Dumars’ hands have been tied as the widow of former Pistons owner Bill Davidson tried to sell the team. Dumars should be able to be much more aggressive going forward.

The two downsides for the team are significant, however. Regrettable contracts to Ben Gordon, Charlie Villanueva and (possibly) Tayshaun Prince will keep the Pistons from making significant additions via free agency. We also continue to hammer the Pistons on the market front. Detroit’s economy is in a shambles and the once-rocking Palace is a graveyard these days.

(Previous rank: 28)

Tags: Austin Daye Ben Gordon Brandon Knight Charlie Villanueva Greg Monroe Jonas Jerebko Rodney Stuckey Tayshaun Prince

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