Detroit Pistons prospect Deividas Sirvydis finding grove in EuroCup

Detroit Pistons prospect Deividas Sirvydis. (Photo by Patrick Albertini/Euroleague Basketball via Getty Images)
Detroit Pistons prospect Deividas Sirvydis. (Photo by Patrick Albertini/Euroleague Basketball via Getty Images) /

After being selected in the second round of the 2019 NBA Draft, Detroit Pistons prospect Deividas Sirvydis is hitting his stride stashed overseas.

Detroit Pistons prospect Deividas Sirvydis is stashed in his native country, Lithuania, and is finding his groove in the EuroCup.

Sirvydis, who turns 20 in June, got off to a slow start through his first seven EuroCup games for Rytas Vilnius. However, over his last three games he is shooting 8-for-17 (47%) from 3-point range and scoring 12.3 points per game in 21.7 minutes per game.

He was 6 for 25 in his previous seven games, which included games where he was 2 for 4 and 2 for 5. For the season, he’s shooting 33.3% from 3-point range and is 11 for 18 inside the arc and 7 for 7 at the free throw line. His season averages through 10 games are 7.1 points and 3.2 rebounds per game.

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Sirvydis was selected in the second round of the 2019 NBA Draft, 37th overall. The Pistons acquired him in a trade with the Dallas Mavericks that sent Isaiah Roby to Dallas. Sirvydis is playing this season out in Lithuania and plans to re-join the Pistons when his season is over.

His greatest strength is his 3-point shooting due to a fluid, consistent motion that made him a priority for the Pistons to select him ahead of several other interested teams. Given the few 2-point shots he’s taken, there’s an area where he can improve, especially using his 6-foot-8 frame around the rim to attack closeouts.

The Athletic’s Sam Vecenie, an NBA Draft expert, cites Sirvydis’ defense as his biggest weakness.

“Sirvydis pretty regularly gets roasted on that end of the floor,” Vecenie wrote in October. “His feet are fluid for a player his size — he stays light and can change direction — but he doesn’t have great quickness. He also is a particularly poor defender when he has to deal with any sort of screen. He’s a magnet for them, and then really struggles to fight through both on and off ball.”

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One thing Vecenie proposed was that Sirvydis develop as a floor-spacing four in the NBA to hide his ball-screen weakness. But it’s more likely that Sirvydis defends the weakest wing when in the game. That would require him to gain weight as he has a slender, 190-pound frame.

He’s only six months older than rookie Sekou Doumbouya, so Sirvydis has time to develop to become a rotational 3-point shooter for the Pistons. It may require him to stay overseas another year or, perhaps, come to Michigan and play heavy minutes with the Grand Rapids Drive to work on the other areas of his game.

Right now he projects as a sharpshooting wing but the idea of playing him as a four is intriguing to help hide his defensive shortcomings, though it would open up more post-up options for opponents. At a young age, there’s room for Sirvydis to grow into a myriad of options depending on how the Pistons see fit.

When Sirvydis comes over during the offseason to work out with Detroit and in front of Dwane Casey, it will open up a greater perspective of his future.

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Rytas Vilnius (4-6) has six games coming up with the next one on Jan. 8 against UNICS Kazan. Sirvydis is teammates with former Chicago Bulls forward Cameron Bairstow.