Pistons' drafting of Ron Holland helps form identity: Instant reaction, analysis

2024 NBA Draft - Round One
2024 NBA Draft - Round One / Sarah Stier/GettyImages

The Detroit Pistons had the 5th pick for the third straight season and there was less certainty about this one than the previous selections. 

With new team president Trajan Langdon on board, the Pistons changed the direction of the franchise, firing Troy Weaver and Monty Williams to help clear the stink from the worst season in team history. 

Coming off a 14-win season, it's safe to say the Pistons need elite talent more than fit, but their biggest needs are shooting and rim protection.

With young talent, cap space and the 5th pick, many were expecting the Pistons to make big noise in the draft, but instead they made a somewhat suprising pick, selectig Ron Holland II from the G-League.

Here is an instant reaction and quick analysis of the newest member of the Detroit Pistons. 

Ron Holland puts defensive stamp on the Detroit Pistons

We speculated that Trajan Langdon has a type, as he has mostly taken long two-way wings who play defense.

Holland fits that mold as a 6-foot-8 forward who is very athletic and has a high motor on defense.

He's just 18, and his shot is a project, so Langdon clearly went with the guy he thinks is the best player available and didn't worry as much about fit.

With Ausar Thompson already on board, the Pistons now have two long, athletic wing defenders, which will hopefully improve the overall defense and begin to forge an identity around it.

Holland averaged over 19 points per game in the G-League, with nearly seven rebounds and 2.5 steals. At one time, he was projected to be the #1 pick in the draft, but an up and down year in the G-League hurt him.

He and Ausar are eventually going to be fun to watch defensively and they will give the Pistons plenty of versatility on that end, but there are some question marks.

Pistons' choice of Ron Holland II comes with questions: Instant reaction, analysis 

The first thing fans of the Pistons are going to complain about is Holland's 3-point shooting numbers, which aren't great. He only hit 24 percent of his 3.4 attempts per game in his one season in the G-League.

It's a valid concern for a team that has been near the bottom of the league in shooting forever and already has a guy in Ausar Thompson who struggles in that area.

Holland is not a finished product and if his shot comes along, all of the other tools are there. The Pistons can find shooting elsewhere in free agency and trades, so if Langdon thought Holland was the best guy, you have to take him. A 14-win team can't draft purely for need.

He may not be an instant fit with Cade Cunningham, but given how Boston just won with versatile wing players who can defend, it's not the worst idea. The Pistons also just hired shooting guru Fred Vinson, who has a history of improving shots, so it's way too soon to know what Holland and Thompson will be as shooters.

There is the question of whether the Pistons might have been able to trade back and take Holland anyway, but must have gotten the sense he wasn't going to last. Langdon confirmed that the Pistons had offers:

We'll have more as the night develops, stay tuned.