When the Detroit Pistons hired Stan Van Gundy as their head coach and front office leader, I was quite excited. Of course, now he and his cohorts, including GM Jeff Bower, now have to get the pieces in place to improve the team. The NBA Draft has come and gone, with the Pistons getting a nice value in point guard Spencer Dinwiddie. Now, the attention turns to free agency. The Pistons, obviously, won't be in on the big name players, aside from their restricted free agent Greg Monroe. However, they have added somebody to the mix. Well, they've added Cartier Martin, but more importantly they added Jodie Meeks.
The deal is reportedly for three years and $19.5 million. I am of two minds on this deal. It really depends on which version of Meeks they get. He had a career year last season with the Lakers, but that was a Mike D'Antoni offense, and there was not a lot of competition for shots. Actually, there was Nick Young, but I digress. Kevin Pelton has him ranked as the 25th best free agent on the market. He has a three year projected WARP of 11.2. That'd be pretty alright, if it comes to fruition.
The Pistons needed shooting, and Meeks does that, and that's about it. He can actually shoot threes, as opposed to Josh Smith, but last year was his career high in that regard. He made 40.1% of his three-pointers last season, but on his career he has made 37.6% of his three-pointers. That's a fine number, but that's also pretty much all Meeks does, so making around 40 percent would be big for Detroit. That being said, his 4.5 Win Shares is only the second best of his career, because he had his worst defensive season.
I expect SVG to do what he did in Orlando, which means surrounding Andre Drummond with shooters. Meeks can do that. I bet he gets a lot of open looks, and he should make a bunch of them. Is this a bit rich for a player like Jodie Meeks? Perhaps, although he is only 26, so he is in his prime. I think this could be a fine deal, especially if the salary cap rises. Meeks provides the Pistons with much needed shooting, but he's just one small piece of the puzzle.