The NBA Draft Lottery isn’t exactly must-see television. The ping pong balls have already fallen into place, and all that’s left is the reveal. The draft order lacks drama, and the only tension builder is the commercial break before the top three teams are announced.
Each team sends a representative, usually a random player or owner’s child, someone who has to do with the franchise. These people offer nothing besides mild reactions, with disappointed frowns for unexpected drops and grins for unexpected rises.
This year, the Pistons sent Kyle Singler. The combo wing was looking his best in a suit and tie, ready to smile as the Detroit Pistons received a middling draft slot. Instead, he watched the Pistons lose their draft pick to the re-christened Charlotte Hornets.
It wasn’t exactly drama, but it was disheartening for a team that is trying to rebuild with a new general manager.
Many fans frantically rushed to their computers to find out why they had to send away their first round pick in one of the most loaded drafts in recent years. Then it came back: this pick was what it took to get rid of Ben Gordon’s colossal contract.
Gordon was sent to the then-Bobcats, along with the pick, to get Corey Maggette’s expiring contract. While it might have made sense to lose the 25 million dollar burden of Gordon, it hurts now.
Gordon, along with Charlie Villanueva, has been one of the most scrutinized signings of ex-GM Joe Dumars. Gordon was oft-injured and never really performed to the ability he showed with the Chicago Bulls. It took giving up a pick to get him off the books, which makes the ill-advised signing sting even more.
MLive quoted new president of basketball operations, Stan Van Gundy as saying: “Tonight ‘s results are disappointing, but not disastrous.”
He then went onto to remind everyone that it was either this year or next. If the Pistons had kept this year’s pick, they would have had to send next year’s to Charlotte, unless it was the top pick overall. That’s something a little more than disappointing.
It may not be entirely disastrous, but calling it a minor disaster would be fair. But rather than dwell on the lost pick, Van Gundy made an attempt to be positive. He reminded the media that the Pistons still had the 38th pick, which is a small consolation for the Pistons.
Unless Andrew Wiggins or Julius Randle fall all the way to 38, it looks like the Pistons are going to have to wait until next year to rebuild through the draft.