Detroit Pistons: What Was Said At Troy Weaver’s Pre-Draft Press Conference
The Detroit Pistons face a pivotal offseason ahead starting with the NBA Draft Thursday, July 22 at 8pm. Troy Weaver held a pre-draft media session Tuesday which helped connect more dots for observers attempting to figure out the draft night strategy.
Weaver also gave insight on how the CBA and other factors will affect free agency and their overall offseason plans.
I break it all down starting with how he’s seeking to improve, to the draft day strategies they may employ.
The question everyone wants to know is how Troy Weaver sees this draft, but his focus is on how he sees the Detroit Pistons.
“We like our young players, we like our veterans and we have our coach now,” Weaver said. “We want to get everybody on the floor now and see what that looks like.”
And that’s saying a lot because Cade Cunningham, Jaden Ivey, Bojan Bogdanovic, Isaiah Stewart and Bojan Bogdanovic have never played in an NBA basketball game together. Based off what they have seen the possibilities excite them once the team gets healthy. And despite lacking the desired results, Weaver wasn’t shy about how much he likes the talent he’s assembled.
“Even though we haven’t really won any games yet, we sort of like or lot in life right now.”
— Brandon Dent | @WoodwardSports #DetroitKoolAid (@DetroitKoolAid) June 20, 2023
Troy Weaver noted “nothing has changed” since the last press conference in regard to prospect evaluations. What that says to me is they’re solid with the Pistons draft board instead of being swayed by constantly changing media reports.
Weaver has always stated the rebuild or “Restore” would move at the pace he saw fit, and would resist being sped up or slowed down. And he wont bend on the foundation he’s used and developed as part of his selection criteria.
“We’re going to stick to our ethos and pick the player that best fits us in every way,” Weaver remarked. “In the locker room, on the floor and in the community,” he continued, “but fit over position? No, we’ll do what’s best for the team.”
This should excite observers as Weaver has been well studied on value prospects whether in the lottery or not with picks like Saddiq Bey, Isaiah Stewart, Isaiah Livers and even Jalen Duren.
“I thought last year people had it pegged and it didn’t go in that order. Obviously there can be some shakeup with picks 2-10 not going according to plan. But this is why you have to know the players on the board and know all scenarios. I think it can get a little dicey after 1.”
Weaver seemed very confident that they have a good grasp on this batch of NBA draft prospects. He’s shown improvements each year in the draft with last years culminating in picking Jaden Ivey and a draft day trade at pick 13 in Jalen Duren.
On Making The New CBA Work For The Pistons
“There’s some thought there,” Weaver said in regard to the NBA’s new collective bargaining agreement. “There could be some vulnerable situations we could take advantage of and we want to be prepared.”
This is similar to the strategies Weaver used to acquire players like Jerami Grant, Bojan Bogdanovic, Jalen Duren and even James Wiseman.
Based on how teams at the top will have to reshuffle the deck to avoid additional tax for being above the luxury tax threshold for too long.
To Pick or Not To Pick
Don’t rule out a trade or two on draft night, which is something Weaver has aggressively pursued in prior drafts. A major philosophy of Weaver’s seems to revolve around drafting value and depending on internal growth.
So if they trade the fifth pick it could be for more shots in the first round or future firsts to bolster assets in coming drafts.
“We’re still open to improving the team. Do we like the players that we’ve been vetting out at five?” Weaver asked. “Absolutely, but we’re still open to different opportunities.”
This again backs up the comments Troy Weaver made early in the press conference as it relates to his belief in the current roster. Cade Cunningham, Jaden Ivey and Jalen Duren represent something special and Weaver seems ready to reap the rewards.
But staying prepared for any and all scenarios is what’s made Weaver one of the more advantageous general managers in his brief tenure.