Detroit Pistons: The most difficult training camp battle to predict

Head coach Monty Williams of the Phoenix Suns reacts against the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)
Head coach Monty Williams of the Phoenix Suns reacts against the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Pistons, Marvin Bagley III
NOVEMBER 18: Marvin Bagley III #35 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

Detroit Pistons: The case for and against Marvin Bagley III

Marvin Bagley III will be 24 at the beginning of next season. He has career averages of 13.3 points, 7.2 rebounds per game on 50 percent from the field and 29 percent from long range. Bagley III has two years left on his contract at $12.5 million per season.

The case for Bagley III

When MBIII has been healthy he’s shown that he can be an explosive offensive player. He has a much-more polished scoring bag than Wiseman and is a guy who you know can come off the bench and get buckets. MBIII put together some nice stretches last season, especially after coming back from his second injury, when he went over 20 points and 10 rebounds in three of four games. Of the two players, MBIII has the best chance to be able to play power forward some (I hate either of them at that position) and has shown glimpses of being able to hit the corner three, which will be necessary if he is going to play with another big. MBIII is more of a known commodity who has the offensive skillset to be a quality backup center.

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The case against Bagley III

Yes, MBIII is a known commodity and here is what we know: He can’t stay on the floor, defend, or score outside of the paint. And his defense inside the paint isn’t great, as he has only blocked at least one shot per game once in his career, and that was his rookie season. He’s not nearly as dynamic offensively as Wiseman, who has better handles and can do more with the ball outside of the lane. Bagley III is the more polished post player, but at this point, he is what he is, which is a post scorer who can’t do much else. He’s never shown much motor on defense, or on the defensive glass, and most importantly, he hasn’t been able to stay healthy since his rookie season. He played 42 games last season, and though he did have some big performances, they were scattered and mostly during the “egregiously tanking” portion of the season. With more evidence to go by, Bagley III’s limitations are better known and harder to fix. The extra year on his deal could also make him more difficult to trade, so Bagley III has a lot to prove to whatever team he ends up on in the future.