Andre Drummond and Reggie Jackson: Someone has to go

Written by :
Published on : February 17, 2017

 

 

 

To say that this year’s Detroit Pistons have underachieved compared to what everyone expected prior to the season would be an understatement. As we enter All-Star weekend the Pistons have a 27-30 record and currently sit in the 8th seed in the NBA’s Eastern Conference. That’s right around how they ended last season when they entered the playoffs as the 8th seed and got swept in the first round by the eventual champions, the Cleveland Cavaliers. Right now they seem to be headed for a similar fate and most people think that the team will make some kind of trade to shake things up on the roster and try to jump start a playoff run.

 

The NBA trade deadline is next Thursday, February 23rd at 3 p.m. ET. The Pistons won’t play another game before then so it’s possible that this roster as it is currently assembled may have played their last game together. In a year when this team was supposed to take the next step towards competing for a championship it would be a giant disappointment to the players and the fans to see the season end the same way it did last year. There’s no doubt that this team needs a spark, but from where should that spark come?

 

Many people think it should come from trading away a marquee player in order to obtain multiple pieces that fit into coach Stan Van Gundy’s system. The two players who would seem to garner the most interest, Reggie Jackson and Andre Drummond, are also two of the more controversial players among fans of the team. Both players are young and have a ton of potential so they should be able to get a big return in a trade but both also have some flaws and have disappointed this year.

 

 

These two should be the cornerstone of many a successful playoff run but instead the team seems to be worse with both of them on the court. The Pistons defense ranks 11th in the league but sadly this is coming almost entirely on the backs of the bench players. When Andre Drummond and Reggie Jackson are on the floor together the Pistons are giving up 110 points for every 100 possessions and when it’s Drummond alone on the floor that number only drops to 108 points. Clearly they both shouldn’t be on the team but less clear is which one should go.

 

When Andre Drummond came into the league in 2012 he was a physical freak with a ridiculous amount of potential. His game was raw and there were concerns about his offensive skills and his overall effort. He couldn’t shoot the ball and couldn’t hit a free throw to save his life. He was a project to be sure but in the mean time could be a great asset in the interior defense and rebounding department. And he was. But his growth has not been what many people had hoped it would be.

 

There are still times when he looks lost on the offensive end and ever since he signed a 5-year max deal last summer it seems as though is effort and attention to detail have tapered off. Sure, he’s only 23-years-old and players like him don’t usually blossom until 25 or older, so there’s a good chance that the Pistons are going to want to hang on to him. It also helps him that there isn’t a huge market for players like him right now.

 

 

Reggie Jackson on the other hand could net some really good value in a trade and many people, including myself, would say that the team was actually better before he returned from his early season knee injury. Back up, Ish Smith, has played well all season and with Jackson off the floor the offense moves much more smoothly. Jackson is only 26-years-old and has the ability to take over a game on offense, but for some reason it hasn’t worked this year with the Pistons.  There’s a good chance he is still working back to 100% from the knee injury that kept him out for the beginning of the season but coach Van Gundy could be under pressure to improve this roster immediately and start putting together more wins.

 

The time to make a move might be right now and while I think that trading away Drummond could be better for the future, trading away Jackson could provide more substantial immediate returns. If the team does make a move before they return to action next Thursday against the Hornets it seems much more likely that it will be Reggie Jackson who is wearing another jersey. We are a society of instant gratification and trading away Reggie could provide just that. The right deal could provide an addition-by-subtraction type boost and help the Pistons obtain a higher playoff seed, thereby avoiding another first round exit at the hands of the Cavaliers.

 

Sorry Reggie, but your time in Detroit might be over. And that might be best for everyone.

 

 


Champ and Chump: Week 9

Written by :
Published on : November 11, 2015

 

Week 8 is in the books, a special thanks to all of those who came to see some of the SBS staff at the tailgate at USC on Saturday. Wish I could have been there but hey, someone has to separate the heroes and villains each and every week. After all, when your team loses like my Spartans did on Saturday night, it helps to know there are some weekly champs out there that could use your support. This week, the gridiron monopolizes our Champ and Chump sections, taking home almost all of the hardware. We celebrate a great individual effort, a clutch late game performance and a total team effort for slowing down a speeding train. On the flip side, some zebras got in the way of a great football game (again) and a legendary winner appears to be an absolute loser. Let’s get to the picks.

 

 

Champ: Antonio Brown

Can’t stop him

 

17 catches, 284 yards in a 38-35 win over the Oakland Raiders

In a game where the Steelers again saw their quarterback leave the game due to injury, Antonio Brown and backup running back Deangelo Williams took over and put the team on their backs. Just for the hell of it, Brown also carried the ball twice for 22 yards and even made two tackles. With the win, Pittsburgh improved to 5-4 on the year and is in the thick of the wild card race. With Cincinnati off to an 8-0 start, the wild card is likely all the Steelers can hope for but with Antonio Brown playing like this, even the Bengals will be taking note. Big Ben is expected to be sidelined for at least one week and the Steelers have a brutal stretch following their week 11 bye.

 

Honorable Mention:

 

Carolina Panthers- It isn’t always the prettiest, but Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers are 8-0 after 3 straight wins vs the Seahawks, Colts and Packers. Not a bad stretch.

 

Reggie Jackson- Jackson scored 26 of his 40 points in the 4th quarter on Sunday night. The Pistons outscored the Trail Blazers 41-11 in the 4th after trailing by as many as 18 earlier in the game. The Pistons went on to win 120-103.

 

Alabama- Held Heisman front-runner Leonard Fournette to just 31 yards on 19 carries in a big 30-16 win over LSU on Saturday.

 

 

Chump: Jerry Jones

Looks evil

 

Last week, some very graphic images were released that showed the extent of the assault Greg Hardy put on his girlfriend last year. As we all know by now, Greg Hardy is an absolute garbage human being who is somehow allowed to cash in on the football field when he should be behind bars. What we didn’t know, or maybe what we always thought and now know for sure is that Jerry Jones, Cowboy’s’ owner is also a despicable person who values dollar signs more than actual values that a respectable human would care about. We’ve all since lifted our jaws back up off the floor after seeing the disturbing photos and found ourselves wondering what the Cowboy’s would do with Greg Hardy after these photos were released. Would Dallas bench him, or hide him by not having him available on Sunday, suspend him perhaps, or what many NFL fans hoped, would Dallas be so appalled at the severity of what Hardy did that they would outright release him? The answer, none of the above. Jerry Jones stands by everything he had previously said regarding his “leader” Greg Hardy and continues to support him. I disagree with many who think Jerry Jones is so naïve and is so willing to invite his players into his family that he sometimes defends them to a fault, instead I feel that if Jerry Jones is so blind to think you can sweep all of this under the rug and that the wins and revenue that Greg Hardy can create will somehow repair the bruises and welts he dealt, well then Jerry Jones is almost just as vile as Greg Hardy. And if the Dallas Cowboy fans, and sponsors, have any moral fiber to actually put the well-being of human lives above your glorified football team, then prove it. Make a stand and force the hand of the Dallas Cowboys to do something right.

 

Dishonorable Mention:

 

Michigan State Football- With under 2 minutes left, Michigan State led by 12 points. Undefeated and playing a 3-6 team, the Spartans broke down defensively and blew a huge opportunity, potentially ending their possible playoff run.

 

Referees- Alex wrote a great piece with some ideas on how to solve the issues with referees in football. This past weekend another absolutely inexcusable call may have cost a team a win. Nebraska’s touchdown with 17 seconds left over the Spartans was absolutely illegal with the Wide Receiver taking himself out of bounds only to come back in and catch the football. He was ruled forced out, and after further review it was somehow not overruled. The Spartans blew it by letting Nebraska hang around, but the refs stole their victory.

 

Aqib Talib- In a loss vs the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday, Aqib Talib received a penalty and ultimately a one game suspension for poking Dwayne Allen in the eye on Indianapolis’ final drive. In a game where the Colts ended up winning by 3 points, Indy was allowed the opportunity to run out the clock because in part of the penalty.

 

 


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