Detroit Pistons: Final two rotation spots could be fluid

Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) is defended by Detroit Pistons forward Isaiah Livers Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) is defended by Detroit Pistons forward Isaiah Livers Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /

The Detroit Pistons have a full roster and coach Dwane Casey is going to have to figure out how it all works.

This is a tough job for any coach, as he has to balance trying to win games with a young team with getting developmental minutes for the players in the core and trying out guys that could be part of the future plans.

The Pistons signed another player yesterday, which means more moves are coming, which means even more roster churn and possibilities for coach Casey.

There are really only three locks for the rotation at this point, as we know Cade Cunningham, Saddiq Bey and Isaiah Stewart are going to be there, but beyond that there are a lot of question marks.

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If Coach Casey goes with his usual 10-man rotation, there are eight spots that are likely already filled, which leaves two spots that could change from game to game, as Casey rotates guys in to try and find combinations that work.

Detroit Pistons rotation: Who gets the final two spots?

If I had to guess right now, I’d say there are eight players who are very likely to be in the Detroit Pistons’ rotation next season:

  • Cade Cunningham
  • Saddiq Bey
  • Isaiah Stewart
  • Jaden Ivey
  • Marvin Bagley III
  • Kelly Olynyk
  • Killian Hayes
  • Alec Burks

That leaves a whole lot of guys fighting for those last two spots, a group that includes:

  • Isaiah Livers
  • Nerlens Noel
  • Jalen Duren
  • Hamidou Diallo
  • Cory Joseph
  • Kevin Knox

So six guys will be fighting for minutes at the end of the rotation, and it’s possible we’ll see all six at various points in the season.

Isaiah Livers is the likely frontrunner, as he is a versatile forward who can shoot the 3-point shot, a skill the Pistons need, but beyond that? Every one of these guys may get a shot.

Noel is probably the best of the Pistons’ reserve centers, as he’s a veteran who can defend and protect the rim, but it’s possible he’ll be trade bait at some point, so Detroit may decide to leave him out to keep him healthy.

Same with Cory Joseph, who might offer the Pistons the best chance to win now, but would potentially block younger players. Diallo and Knox will be fighting for minutes and I am sure Detroit would love to see 18-year-old Jalen Duren at some point in the season.

It’s going to be a tricky task for Dwane Casey to try and win games, get developmental minutes for his young core and try to work in these fringe guys to see if any of them stick.

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