The Detriot Pistons took a chance on former first round pick in the 2017, Dennis Smith Jr. After trading Derrick Rose to the New York Knicks at the trade deadline this past season.
The deal was a short term fix for the Knicks at the guard position, more than it help the Pistons, who is the playoffs this past season. However, the Pistons were able to score a second-round pick and a young prospect.
Last season, the Pistons were not able to see a lot of Smith due to injury. With that being said, not many teams will be jumping at the chance to sign him. However, he has a qualifying offer of over $7 million, according to Aaron Kellerstrass of pistonpowered.com, but the Pistons would be smart not to offer it because Smith would accept it.
Smith has not lived up to his potential as a yet, but basketball trainer Mark Edwards recently ask about Smith. Mark was presented with the scenario, if he could work with Smith this summer what would they focus on.
“Dennis is a kid that I have a lot of love for; I really have a lot of love for. He is a great person, a great young man, and I deal with him personally. We never got into a workout place together; we have talked about it, but he is really loyal. So, he goes home and works with that he has been working with forever. On his leaping ability, his game, and you can’t knock a player for that. However, if I did have the chance to work with him, we would do a lot more off-the-ball stuff, fundamental reads, because he is so talented,” said Edwards.
“He sees things two or three plays ahead, but sometimes he is moving before the play happens. We would work on his jump shot, he jumps so high. When he jumps he hangs in the air and shoots the ball on the way down and we would work on more fundamental reads. So, your teammates know where you are and vice versa and act accordingly. In the NBA they do not really run plays, they run set. So, that means it’s based on reaction, and Dennis has the ability to break down two defenders and his teammates do not know what he is going to do. We would make him more predictable for his teammates because he is a special talent. That leaping ability you mix that in with fundamentals straight pass, great understanding for the game, and leadership. He will be fine these are guys that are in the NBA that left coach after one year.”
He would continue by stating the NBA is a difficult place to play and you are talking about half of the one percent that makes the league.
Smith averaged 6.7 points. 2.4 rebounds, 3.3 assists per game in 23 appearances for the fourth year veteran.