Coming into the offseason, forward was by far the weakest position for the Detroit Pistons.
They somewhat remedied that by trading for Bojan Bogdanovic, which cleared some of the clutter in the center ranks and added a legit shooting threat at forward.
Even after the trade, a quick look at a possible Pistons’ depth chart shows that they are still thin on two-way forwards, which many analysts believe is is the most important position in the modern NBA.
But the Pistons have a few players who may surprise casual fans, but they also have some guys who could crash and burn in the worst-case scenario.
Recently we looked at the best and worst-case scenarios for the centers, and now it’s time for the forwards.
Detroit Pistons: Best and worst-case scenarios for the forwards
Kevin Knox signed a two-year deal with the Detroit Pistons this offseason and will have a hard time cracking the rotation. The best-case scenario for Knox is that he does, and the only way that is going to happen is if he consistently hits shots from long range. Knox did shoot 39 percent from 3-point range in one season for the Knicks, but has barely played since. Best case is that he regains that form and beats out guys like Hamidou Diallo for minutes.
Worst-case is that Knox is a complete waste of a roster spot. He barely plays this season and gets cut in the offseason since his deal is not fully guaranteed. The Pistons are hoping they have a quality rehab project, but there is a good chance he never plays.
The best-case for Hamidou Diallo is that he is the backup small forward behind Saddiq Bey and plays 25 minutes a game. In this scenario, Diallo shoots a respectable percentage from 3-point range, becomes a force in transition and is in the top-10 in the NBA in steals. He morphs into a quality NBA rotation player and one of Detroit’s best defenders, which makes them want to re-sign him after the season to be a key part of their bench.
Diallo hasn’t improved at all offensively and still gets lost on defensive rotations in the half court. He gets beat out for minutes by Isaiah Livers and Kevin Knox and the Pistons are forced to trade him for a second-round pick before the deadline. This is a make-or-break season for Diallo in Detroit, as he is on an expiring deal and will have to earn his way into being part of the long-term plans.