With today's rumor that Detroit Pistons president Joe Dumars will step down as early as this week, lets take a look back at the 14 worst moves Dumars made during his 14-year tenure as president that he and Piston fans wish we could take back.
14. Not amnestying Ben Gordon or Charlie Villanueva Two of the worst signings during Dumars tenure. Dumars had the opportunity to cut ties with either one of these two under the amnesty provision of the collective bargaining agreement but didnt. Charlie V has barely played this year with the Pistons while Gordon was traded to the Bobcats in 2012. Ill touch on these two more later on.
13. Not Drafting Trey Burke (2013) Instead of taking the National Player of the Year, Dumars opted to take Kentavious Caldwell-Pope out of Georgia. Burke is currently in the running for Rookie of the Year, while KCP is riding the bench after starting roughly half the season. This one is still too early to tell, but as of now, it looks like Dumars missed on this pick.
12. Drafting Mateen Cleaves (2000) Dumars first ever draft pick was more of a publicity move than anything else. Cleaves was coming off a National Championship with MSU and the Final Fours Most Outstanding Player. He was drafted to bring fans into the stands with the impending loss of Grant Hill to free agency. After an unsuccessful rookie campaign, Cleaves was traded to the Sacramento Kings for Jon Barry and a 1 st round pick.
11. Trading Aaron Affalo (2009) To help free up more cap space to sign Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva, Dumars traded the 2007 1 st round pick to Denver along with Walter Sharpe and cash considerations for a 2 nd round pick. In the five years since Affalo has been traded, he has increased his points per game in every season with Denver and Orlando.
10. Resigning Rodney Stuckey/Tayshaun Prince (2011) After back-to-back seasons of missing the playoffs, the Pistons were clearly in rebuilding mode. Instead of moving on from the past, Dumars resigned both players to contracts for well more than they were worth. Dumars was able to trade Prince during the 2012-13 season, freeing up cap room and Stuckeys contract will be off the books at the end this season, freeing more cap space.
9. Trading Ben Gordon and a 1 st round pick for Corey Maggette (2012) In a month or so this one could easily be much higher on the list. Dumars was able to get rid of Gordons hideous contract (I will touch on this one later) but at a potentially high cost. The 1 st round pick sent to Charlotte is top 8 protected this season. The Pistons are currently the 8 th worst team in the NBA and there is a 17.6% chance the pick could be sent to Charlotte this year. This years draft class will be one of the deepest since 2004 and with little cap space this off-season, losing the pick could send the Pistons even further into mediocrity. In Maggettes one year in Detroit, he played in just 18 games, averaging 5.3 points.
8. Drafting Rodney White (2001) With the 9 th pick in 2001 NBA Draft, Dumars selected little known Rodney White out of UNC-Charlotte. White quickly fell out of favor with Pistons coach Rick Carlisle and appeared in just 18 games in his rookie season. During the off-season, White was traded to Denver. Here are just a few names that Dumars passed on to take White: Joe Johnson (10 th to Boston), Richard Jefferson (13 th to Houston), Troy Murphy (14 th to Golden State), and Zach Randolph (19 th to Portland).
7. Drafting Austin Daye (2009) With the 15 th pick in the 2009 NBA Draft, Dumars selected sophomore Austin Daye out of Gonzaga. The Pistons desperately needed a point guard and passed on Jrue Holiday (17 th to the 76ers), Ty Lawson (18 th to the Nuggets), Jeff Teague (19 th to the Hawks) and Darren Collision (21 st to New Orleans). Daye was traded in 2013 along with Tayshaun Prince to Memphis and spent the 2013-14 season with Toronto and San Antonio.
6. Hiring Michael Curry/John Kuester/Lawrence Frank/Mo Cheeks Curry and Kuester had never been a head coach while Frank and Cheeks received no respect from their players. There were better options out there when Dumars hired these four.
5. Firing Larry Brown (2005) We will never know the real reason behind Browns termination but him flirting with other teams had a huge impact on the decision. Brown took the Pistons to back-to-back NBA Finals. The Pistons have not returned to the finals since his departure.
4. Signing Josh Smith and Brandon Jennings (2013) Dumars second go round with cap space once again provided futile signings. Smith was better suited as a power forward and his transition to small forward has been nothing short of a failure. Jennings was acquired via a sign and trade with Milwaukee and while he is averaging a career high in assists, his shooting percentage is at a career low. Dumars invested $78 million in these two.
3. Trading Chauncey Billups If you need to find a spot where it all started to go wrong, look no further than the trade of Billups to the Nuggets for Allen Iverson. In theory it was a good trade, as the Pistons freed up enough cap space to be players in free agency. However, AI never fit in with the Pistons and the cap space acquired was wasted just a few months later.
2. Signing Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva For the first time as president, Dumars had the cap space to make a splash in free agency. However, Gordon and Charlie V never lived up to the contracts they signed. Since the signings, the Pistons are yet to have a record above .500 or make the playoffs.
1. Drafting Darko Milicic I still have a soft spot for Dumars taking Darko here over Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade since the majority of other GMs also said that they would have taken Darko as well. However, Darko will still go down as one of the biggest busts in NBA history. Who knows how many more championships the Pistons would have won had they drafted someone else.