Tuesday, November 04, 2008

The East gets a lot more A.I.ntersting

Allen Iverson never quite looked right in those God-awful Nuggets uniforms. A.I. isn't really a chillin' in the mountains type. But, gritty Detroit. A.I.'s got D-Town written all over him.

The question this morning is whether he has "Pistons" scribbled somewhere in the DNA too. That answer won't likely be answered until May.

For those under that rock, Iverson was traded yesterday from Denver to Detroit for Chauncey Billups, Antonio McDyess and Cheikh Samb. McDyess will likely be bought out by the Nuggets and, after a mandatory one month holiday, will re-sign with the Pistons for less coin. Samb is a throw in, so this one is basically straight up bad boy A.I. for boring boy Billups.

Billups epitomized the team first, conservative O, smothering D that has been Detroit throughout the nils. It got them a title in 2004, but the results since then have fallen just short. Obviously, Detroit felt that a change was needed and you can't get more of one than by adding A.I.

Will it work? Well, the reaction is mixed. But, there is little doubt that it will be interesting to see. Luckily for Raps fans, they won't have to wait long as the Pistons arrive in the Big Smoke Wednesday.

As stated, A.I. is a give me the ball type. He can score. He can crazy score. But, whether he makes others around him better is the real question. Other than one short trip to the NBA Finals in 2001, he's never really been on a great team. Yet, he's often been the team. Of course he's likely never had the talent around him that he will in Detroit now (although that Carmelo Anthony is a baller, it's rumoured, and the Nuggets didn't get past the first round in two tries with A.I.).

The real reason for this deal might have to do more with 2010 with more than a few free agents of note, including Chris Bosh and some guy from Cleveland, possibly coming onto the market. Iverson's contact, along with Rasheed Wallace's, will come off the Pistons books by then. Detroit will have a whole lot of coin to play with. In that light, anything A.I. does for the Pistons is a bonus.

But, it's a bonus that Raps fans are likely worrying about today. In Toronto, the hope is that Detroit just brought the circus to town. Starting Wednesday, we will find out.


Andrew Bucholtz said...

There's a great part in The Wages of Wins about how A.I. is a barely-above average to average player by most statistical measures, but gets paid and treated like more because he puts up points (even though he's an incredibly inefficient shooter). In my view, he's not going to help the team-first Pistons. This is a strictly 2010 move for them, but it's a win for the Nuggets in the near future. Michael Grange made some good points on that in his column today.

Mike Radoslav said...

Definitely just clearing up space here, this was an unnecessary move, and a trade where they lost out as well in the end! Makes me feel better about Toronto's chances in the East, even though Detroit will still be a force I personally would much rather see A.I. with his lack of D and tendancy to jack up 50,000 shots a game (exact figure) than Billups.

Detroit does have some quality young players though, they'll be in there tough with whoever they pick up over the next 2 seasons.

As a sidenote isn't it gonna be fun hearing how poor a place Toronto is to play over the next couple years? ;) I can definitely see the Pistons considered as in the running for the Bosh sweepstakes thanks to this move