1. Darko, Detroit’s Real Problem
For any of you who may not remember, the Detroit Pistons selected the Serbian powerhouse Darko Milicic with the second pick in the 2003 NBA draft.
Obviously, hindsight is 20-20, but even Helen Keller could have seen that Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh or Carmello Anthony would have been better. The team traded Darco to Orlando for three yen and tickets to Universal Studios (worth more than actual players received.) Now, Detroit has still succeeded since this draft, winning the NBA championship and advancing to the the NBA finals or conference finals every other year.
But after last year’s loss in the conference finals, team president Joe Dumars stated that no one was safe anymore. So what did he do? He pulled a Theo Epstein and traded the center of his team away. Chauncey Billups and Antono McDyess for Allen Iverson. Let’s think about this for one second. Iverson hasn’t had an assist since giving a college classmate advice on how to draw Daffy Duck pictures. (Iverson studied art at Georgetown.)
By trading Billups, Dumars is losing way more than a player. He’s losing a cog in a very tight wheel. And how could he possibly think Iverson would ever want to share the ball with Hamilton? For years, this team succeeded because of selflessness, some¬thing Iverson does not understand.
He and Melo never worked well enough to make the Nuggets succeed. Darko forced this deal to happen because they needed an extra piece to keep up with the Celtics and the LeBrons, a piece they could have drafted in Anthony.
Dumars must think that Detroit, with the lowly Lions, Tigers and GM has not suffered enough.