Pistons rumors: A podcaster as president? May not be so crazy

Detroit Pistons v Los Angeles Clippers
Detroit Pistons v Los Angeles Clippers / Kevork Djansezian/GettyImages

The Detroit Pistons are now weeks into the process of hiring a new president of basketball operations and potential names are starting to leak. 

Not surprisingly, Jon Horst from the Bucks has been mentioned, as he has connections to the Pistons as a former employee. 

For many fans, the dream candidate is Tim Connelly, current president of the Timberwolves who was also partially responsible for building a championship roster in Denver. He has experience successfully building mid-market teams and isn’t afraid to make the big move, which is probably what Detroit needs. 

But another name has surfaced that was a bit more surprising in former player and current podcaster JJ Redick. 

NBA Mock Draft: One prospect "reach" for every lottery team. dark. Related Story. NBA Mock Draft: One prospect "reach" for every lottery team

Redick has gained prominence as a pundit over the last few seasons, mostly by injecting some logic and basketball knowledge into a room of guys like Stephen A. Smith yelling at each other. It’s hard to know if Redick is really that smart or if he just looks that way by comparison. 

Insider Marc Stein (subscription) mentioned Redick as a possibility in a recent post on substack. So, is he really a candidate? And does he make any sense at all? 

JJ Redick would be a great hire for the Detroit Pistons 

If the Pistons wanted to do something creative, then hiring Redick, who has no experience as a coach or in the front office, would certainly be one way to do it. 

The positives to Redick are that he would bring a fresh perspective to a team that desperately needs a new direction. He’s a respected former player who has a lot of connections in the league and is viewed as a smart basketball guy who knows the game inside and out. 

He’s buddies with a lot of the players but far enough removed that he could still make tough decisions. 

Redick made the playoffs in the first 13 seasons of his career, so he knows what a winning team looks like and what it takes to build one. He was never gifted with great size or athleticism, so had to be a smart player to survive in the NBA, and as we’ve seen in the past, successful role players (like Steve Kerr) can often make good coaches or front office executives. 

Redick would instantly bring some excitement and attention to Detroit, and I do think he’d have the chance to recruit players to come to the Motor City. 

JJ Redick would be a disaster for the Detroit Pistons 

I like Redick and do think he has some interesting and smart ideas about basketball, but are we sure his very first job should be the top guy of the worst franchise in the NBA? 

There is far more to being a team president than diagramming plays with LeBron James or rightfully pointing out that Stephen A. Smith is a moron. 

I have no doubt Redick knows ball, but does he know business? Does he understand the intricacies of the salary cap? I realize the team has lawyers and Ivey league suits to handle the money stuff, but this is like me saying I should be Secretary of Education because I used to be a teacher. 

There is so much more to this job than just choosing players and coaches, and most of it is done behind closed doors, out of the spotlight and not in front of a microphone. 

Redick is currently weighing possible coaching jobs as well, so there is no doubt he has some kind of future in a front office or on a bench if he wants it, but why should he not have to earn it? To go through the same learning curve and hurdles that someone like Tayshaun Prince has had to go through before getting a shot at the big job? I do find it somewhat suspect that a guy who has never been an assistant coach or held any sort of front office position is being considered for these jobs while other candidates who have paid their dues by working their way up are being overlooked. It seems like he is skipping important steps.

Redick is an interesting candidate who would bring something new and unique to Detroit, but his complete lack of experience is troubling and just because someone is good at one thing does not mean they will be good at another.