The Detroit Pistons were busy early in the offseason, drafting Jaden Ivey, trading for the rights to draft Jalen Duren, and bringing on Alec Burks, Nerlens Noel and Kevin Knox.
I don’t know if that will be enough to offset the loss of Jerami Grant and propel the Detroit Pistons to the next level, but they should be much-more athletic, better at protecting the rim and have some more shooters around Cade Cunningham.
One of those shooters is Alec Burks, a 31-year-old guard who will be playing for his 7th team next season. He’s also on an expiring contract (team option the following year), so it’s not like the Pistons necessarily view him as part of the long-term plans.
Even though Burks has been around for awhile, he’s a guy many fans might not know much about, and I think he’s going to surprise some people next season, as he is in the perfect position to succeed with the Detroit Pistons.
Detroit Pistons: Why Alec Burks will be a pleasant surprise
Even though Burks is on the plus side of 30, he’s actually put together arguably his best seasons over the last three years. Burks has averaged over 40 percent from 3-point range in the last two seasons and has really figured out his role on an NBA team.
He’s comfortable coming off the bench, which he likely will for Detroit, and could end up being the primary scorer off the bench for the Pistons next season. He could potentially end up shooting six or seven 3-point shots per game off the bench, and could tick his points up closer to 15 per game in that role.
He’s also going to get a lot of minutes with the Pistons’ regulars, which includes as a small forward with both Cade Cunningham and Jaden Ivey, two dynamic guards who are going to draw a lot of attention and double teams and have the ability to set up teammates.
Burks shot 41 percent on catch-and-shoot 3-point shots last season, and he could get even more of those opportunities with better playmakers getting him the ball. The Knicks didn’t have even one playmaker as good as Cunningham or Ivey, so Burks could be one of the biggest beneficiaries, as he can knock down the shots the guards create for him.
Even though Alec Burks is entering the latter stages of his career, he is playing his best basketball and has landed in a situation in Detroit where he should have a defined role that he can thrive in. Don’t be surprised when Burks is one of the Pistons’ leading scorers next season and we could even see him notch a career high in points per game.