Apr 8, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; Detroit Pistons guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (5) and guard Brandon Jennings (7) talk against the Atlanta Hawks in the second quarter at Philips Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Palace Picks: Summer League and Free Agency Primer


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Palace Picks are back as we get ready for the official  free agency period –  where teams can sign unrestricted free agents and put in offer sheets for those like Greg Monroe that are restricted free agents. The Pistons will have 13.5 million dollars in cap space and SVG already has ten  or so free agents that he’d like to target. It’ll be interesting to see how many of those names are players that have played for him before.  Trevor Ariza and Rashard Lewis both seem like good candidates to add to the 2014-15 roster.

Of course, moves will be made in part by how certain players perform in Summer League play.

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The Free Press’ Vince Ellis starts things off this morning with his recent piece on how off-season signings for the Pistons could play a major part in changing the culture of the team. Van Gundy also pointed out that he believes his team needs an energy infusion.

“Guys that we think are high-character, team guys, guys that play hard and are high-energy guys,” Van Gundy said. “I think our team needs an energy infusion.

“Hopefully some of it will come from our returning guys putting more energy into the game. We need an energy infusion.”

Down the road at The Detroit News, Vincent Goodwill wrote about how the Pistons are targeting value in free agency over making the big splash.  Ellis mentioned the names of Shaun Livingston, Trevor Ariza, Anthony Morrow, and Jodie Meeks as potential free agent targets.

“We’re gonna be active,” Van Gundy said. “But with where we are, and the positions we want to fill, we’re not gonna create a big splash in terms of free agency. But it’ll be guys we really like. The splash will be on the court.”

Meeks, Ariza, Morrow, and Livingston all seem like great targets, but Bleacher Report’s Micky Shaked says there are other off-season moves that are imperative for the Pistons. Some harsh words though from Shaked who thinks Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is not a starter in this league.

If Dinwiddie is to learn the point, some of that leftover $10 million should go to forcing either Singler or Caldwell-Pope out of the rotation. Both guys have upside but neither player made a huge impact last season. Singler deserves a shot at being a key role player. Caldwell-Pope can retain his starting spot if Detroit wants to return to the lottery.

Detroit Bad Boys’ Brian Packey reminds us that Peyton Siva‘s fate lies in his performance in Orlando late this week. The former Louisville Cardinal faces a team option that could send him packing after July 12th. Packey thinks the Pistons could go either way with their decision on Siva.

What I imagine could happen either way, unless Siva wows in Summer League, is the Pistons waive him. If he clears waivers — that is, another team doesn’t pick up his second year within 48 hours — the Pistons could then re-sign him to a summer contract for camp, or a guaranteed minimum salary again.

Mlive’s David Mayo provides an idiot’s guide to knowing if Stan Van Gundy is doing a good job as president of basketball operations this summer. Mayo answered how to see if SVG is on track in his latest mailbag. How do we know he is doing well?

Get players who can be integrated into a system. Use your cap space to address across-the-board issues. Manage without micro-managing. Focus on the things you know and learn the things you don’t on the business side. Those are the things everyone will watch, regardless of point of view, from owner to fans.

Free agency and trades can be assessed as developments arise. Beyond that, to gauge how things are going without the benefit of the only gauge that matters — W-L-Pct. — watch for how the rest of the front office and scouting/coaching staffs are filled, how analytics staff is expanded, how the NBA Development League staff is structured and integrated. This front office is dealing with first-time issues for the franchise even as leadership works to restructure. Pending what you see with the on-court product, those are the more subtle ways to assess the changes.

Free Agency Quick Hits

 

 

 

 

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