Detroit Pistons: Josh Jackson is the perfect low-risk, high-reward signing

(Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
(Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Pistons agreed to terms of a contract with forward Josh Jackson, not a large contract, but one that could be lethal in the long-run.

According to Adrian “Woj” Wojnarowski, the Detroit Pistons signed forward Josh Jackson. The details are unknown on the contract, but it is not expected to be a large contract by any means. This deal is low key but could pay off big dividends for the Detroit Pistons, during an offseason that there has been plenty of signings.

Jackson will be entering his fourth season in the NBA after one year at Kansas. Jackson committed to Kansas as a five-star recruit after a dominant high school career. He played well at Kansas, leading him to be the fourth overall pick to Phoenix.

Since then, he has largely been a disappointment. He was on the All-Rookie second team after a strong second half of the season but has regressed since then. In addition to his on-court struggles, there were off court issues causing him to start last season in the G League. He did get called back to the league, where he averaged nine points, 1.6 assists, and four rebounds.

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Despite his struggles, Jackson still has an incredible ceiling. He is only 23-years old, so he has time to develop.

While it is unlikely he becomes a star; there is still a realistic path for him to become a good role player or even a good starter.

With Jackson, it all starts with his athleticism. He is 6-foot-8 and 207-pounds with great leaping ability and quickness.

This athleticism shows up on defense, using his gifts to guard shooting guards and small forwards.

He can become even better under Casey’s tutelage as he matures to become a better team defender and a positive on that side of the court.

Jackson also offers tantalizing potential on offense. In college and in the NBA, he has shown serious flash as a shot creator.

After the All-Star break his rookie year, he averaged 18.7 points per game, so there is evidence he can score. It is not realistic to expect him to score this well as a primary option, but he could be a good tertiary shot-creator in Pistons’ lineups that need as much shot creation as possible.

Off the ball, Jackson will need to show consistency in his jumper. In his career, he shot 29.8% from three. With the NBA being so reliant on spacing, his jumper’s improvement will be critical to getting minutes in the NBA. There is hope as he shot a very respectable 38.2% from three in his 26 game stint in the G-league to start last year. If he can improve to a 34-36% percent shooter, Jackson should have a clear path to playing time.

Jackson has not done himself any favors in his time in the league. A lack of maturity hurt him both on and off the court. However, it seems that his trade to Memphis and subsequent time in the G-league has helped him mature as a person and player.

Marc Spears of The Undefeated does a great job showing his growth mentally while in the G-league. His mental growth definitely played a large role in him carving out a spot in the Memphis rotation after his time in the G-league.

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Jackson has had a roller coaster start to his career, but the fact remains he remains a tremendous talent at a premier NBA position. The Detroit Pistons are hoping he can continue to grow and carve out a role as a 3-D wing with the size to guard multiple spots. Ideally, he could even provide shot creation as well. Hopefully, with Jackson’s new mindset, he can now fully focus on basketball and playing up to his lofty talent and draft status.