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Shockingly, the Detroit Pistons may not want a logjam on the wing

Aug 12, 2010, 9:05 AM EDT

tracy_mcgrady.jpgI’m not sure Tracy McGrady fits in well with any NBA team at this point, but the Detroit Pistons are a pretty bizarre match. He may not be breaking the bank with his recently signed one-year, $1.3 million deal, but T-Mac is a fairly demanding offensive player whose level of production no longer validates his inefficient style. To make matters worse, the Pistons already had all kinds of options lined up at both shooting guard and small forward. Ben Gordon and Rip Hamilton are set to be shooting guard fixtures, and Detroit’s forward crop yields Tayshaun Prince, Austin Daye, DaJuan Summers, Jonas Jerebko, and Charlie Villanueva.

McGrady will eat into somebody’s minutes, but why would the Pistons go through this much trouble to sign an aging superstar-turned-role-player-who-doesn’t-seem-to-know-he’s-a-role-player? Detroit isn’t making a championship run or even a legitimate playoff run, yet they insist on signing McGrady and sacrificing the playing time of either their young, emerging talent or their biggest trade chips/most qualified veterans.

Everything that has transpired between McGrady and the Pistons has been odd, but David Aldridge of gives us a slight indication as to what the team’s thinking might have been:

A league source indicated Tuesday that the Pistons will work to
“un-jam the log jam” the team now has at the shooting guard and small
forward spots after signing the 31-year-old McGrady, who has been
working out for several teams this summer looking for a home, including
Chicago and Cleveland.

The source said that McGrady agreed
without conditions to play behind starters Rip Hamilton and Tayshawn
Prince next season, though it’s likely that Detroit will move either
Hamilton or Prince before the start of next season. It’s more likely
the Pistons will move Prince, who is entering the last year of his

If Detroit can successfully trade either Prince or Hamilton for a non-wing player, the move is made a bit more understandable. However, with the current cast in Detroit, it would behoove the franchise to dole out McGrady’s minutes among the team’s younger and more productive players.

  1. PolegoJim - Aug 12, 2010 at 10:08 AM

    Hey, bring on the competition. You keep what you kill. Whoever earns the hard wood time, keeps the hardwood time.
    This will help everyone stay on their game. Non-performing whinners sit.

  2. Zachariah Blott - Aug 12, 2010 at 1:53 PM

    If your team only has 3 PG’s, 4 PF’s, and 5 C’s, you still don’t sign McGrady. This is a terrible pick-up for any team (let me clarify, for any team that wants to win games), and especially for one that’s spinning its nostalgic wheels and signing guys like Villanueva to big deals. Just go get Iverson already, and consider Joe Dumars the new Rachel Phelps.

  3. joyce - Aug 20, 2010 at 1:03 AM

    Tracy Mcgrady is a awesome player and if the screw up by not playing him like they gave up on Chuncey Billips they will lose. Tracy can still play good basket ball. Just because he’s not that young he’s not washed up. He was just hurt and that’s how he played. Tracy is not a selfish player and he always gave Detroit their respect. He will be the best player coming off the bench or if he starts with his experience. I don’t think Rip should be traded or Tayshun but Joe D will mess that up. He gave Quamey a chance why not a superstar. Chauncey is still playing at his age and Rip has been Detroit’s leading scorer since the first day. Some body has to go but I wouldn’t get rid of Charlie V. If somebodoy gets hurt they can be replaced.

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