Detroit Pistons: Predicting roles for the entire Pistons’ roster

(Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)
(Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Pistons, Luka Garza
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Detroit Pistons depth Point/Shooting Guard Rodney McGruder.

Expected Role: Veteran Leader

Rodney McGruder was brought back on a one-year deal after barely playing last year. Expect that to stay the same this year; McGruder is not on the team to play basketball. He is on the team because he is a respected veteran, the locker room loves him, and he can show the young guys the ropes. With only ten guys who will play a night, it makes sense to have a good locker room presence to help the young guys adjust to life in the NBA.

Detroit Pistons depth Power Forward Isaiah  Livers.

Expected Role: 3rd Power Forward, Future Floor Spacer

After being drafted in the second round out of Michigan, Isaiah Livers did not have to travel far to Detroit. Livers still isn’t ready to play after a foot injury, but even if healthy, Livers likely would not have a rotation spot until next year at the earliest.

On the floor, Livers’ game is based around his three-point shot. He is not a great athlete, but he makes the right play and can shoot the lights out. In a year, the hope will be that Livers can take Trey Lyles type spot where he can use his size to defend power forwards or slower small forward, makes the smart pass, and hits threes.

Detroit Pistons depth Center Luka Garza.

Expected Role, 3rd Center, Fan Favorite

Former college player of the year, Luka Garza, is already a fan favorite in Detroit. After being selected in the second round, Garza showed out in the Summer League being named to the All Summer League team. Garza showed his offensive game is legit with NBA range and strength to score in the post. Garza did struggle on defense, where his lack of lateral agility hinders him greatly.

Garza will need to spend the season learning not to become a total liability on the defensive end. With his offensive game and rebounding ability, if he can become just a slightly below-average defender, he could have a career as a backup center.

Next. 2 measurable goals for success in the 2021-22 season. dark

While he works on that, he won’t see the floor often unless Stewart or Olynyk is in foul trouble.