5. Andre Drummond, Pistons | Rookie card
Drummond continues to impress. The key, though, is for him to understand why he has been able to do what he is doing, with a PER just shy of 20, one of the best offensive rebound rates in the league and a high field goal percentage thanks to his getting so many paint touches.
So how is he getting those touches? Just look at his play late in the third quarter against the Blazers on Monday. As Rodney Stuckey worked in the midpost, Drummond was running down the baseline when Stuckey suddenly settled for a step-back jumper (and answered the question "Why is Stuckey's PER south of 10?). Drummond was literally out of bounds as the shot was taken.
With Drummond matched with much stronger LaMarcus Aldridge and his team up by nine points, Lawrence Frank would have understood if Drummond had simply ignored the bad shot and run back on defense. That's what most players would have done. Instead, Drummond quickly used his feet to jump back into the paint and his arms to gain a space advantage against Aldridge.
As a rebounder, the goal is to put yourself in the best position possible for the ball -- if the ball bounces the wrong way, you still have done your job. In this case, the ball caromed high and agile and long Drummond was able to come down with it. It does not matter that he went right back up (also the right play) and Aldridge stripped him. Drummond is going to get stronger and craftier with the ball, that much we know. If he continues to make the high-motor plays he is making now, his ceiling is going to be very high.
6. Kyle Singler, Pistons | Rookie card
Yes, Detroit is bad. Consider that Rodney Stuckey, who has played 57 percent of the minutes available for the Pistons, was a combined minus-80 points in raw plus/minus entering the week. Meanwhile, the team's other core guys -- Greg Monroe, Brandon Knight and Tayshaun Prince -- all played more than 65 percent of the time and were minus-37 to minus-41.
Singler, who has played in a little more than half of the overall minutes on his team, was minus-1 for the season. It's early, and adjusted plus/minus over time will tell us more than just the raw numbers, but it is not a stat to be ignored. He is quickly becoming recognized as a sweet-shooting glue guy.
What insider? :shush:
Get the kid more minutes already, damn.