We asked our ESPN Forecast panel to rate every owner, basketball decision-maker and coach from 0 to 10, and we asked the panel to tell us how important each role is. In particular, we asked the voters to rate each team’s front-office management on its guidance and leadership in terms of how it affects overall on-court success, both in the short and long term.
The Pistons have endured a disastrous season, and being ranked poorly in any capacity shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. With a dysfunctional roster, dysfunctional coaching situation and (apparently) lame-duck GM, the Pistons sit comfortably in the cellar of ESPN’s ranking of the league’s best and worst run teams.
Joe Dumars was ranked dead-last at No. 30 in the front-office executive rankings, which is surprising to no one. Dumars seemed to have regained some of his magic last season when he acquired Jose Calderon and freed up a ton of cap space by moving Tayshaun Prince. But then, of course, he blew all of that dough on Josh Smith and Brandon Jennings.
The rest, as they say, is history.
What’s better is that Dumars’ former right-hand man, John Hammond, is ranked one spot ahead of him at No. 29. Currently the Bucks GM, Hammond helped Dumars build the Pistons 2004 title team and looked to have put together a roster mediocre enough to make the playoffs in the weak Eastern Conference.
Instead, the Bucks are the worst team in the NBA despite Philadelphia’s recent 26 game losing streak.
While Dumars was ranked last in the GM rankings, the Pistons front office was actually ranked 27th ahead of the Bucks and, of course, the Knicks. It’s worth noting that three of the five teams in the Central Division are ranked in the bottom four here, and that the Spurs rank first in both categories because they’re the best-run franchise in all of sports.
The third and final set of rankings, coaching, will be released on Friday. It’s probably safe to assume interim head coach John Loyer will be slotted comfortably near the bottom of the rankings, too.