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Joe Dumars is Wrong: His Worst Move Was Not Selecting Darko Milicic
COMMENTARY | Joe Dumars finally has come out and begun to admit his regrets. He says first and foremost of those regrets was his decision to draft 7 foot Serbian Darko Milicic ahead of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade.
"All I said about that is I'll never make the same mistake twice…you have to make sure you never make that mistake again. We didn't do enough background research on him before we made the pick. Now we go overboard with background," Dumars said.
Drafting Darko was a huge mistake, to be sure. The Pistons could have solidified themselves for another half decade of dominance by selecting the aforementioned players taken after Darko.
But that wasn't Dumars' worst move.
For a team that had long prided itself on defense and hard work, the move made little sense. Villanueva was known for defensive lapses, and Gordon is an average defender at best, but a good shooter. Still, he overpaid for both players.
Gordon is signed for an average of $12.5 million through 2013-14 and Villanueva is signed just as long, at $8 million a year. The Pistons do still have their amnesty available, and one would think they would exercise it on one of these guys. It's just a shame they can't do both.
Where can the Pistons go? Well, for starters, this year in the Draft one would figure they would avoid international prospects. Dumars didn't say he was going to specifically do that, but he said he would avoid making the same mistake twice, and Euro players generally tend to be big unknowns.
The Pistons are going to have a high draft pick in this loaded draft, and they have some nice pieces in place in Brandon Knight and Greg Monroe. Both could eventually form a strong nucleus, but neither are franchise players, either. The Pistons will have to hope they can secure a top five pick and land one of the big names in this draft. Anthony Davis, of course, could be franchise saving.
But will Dumars be lauded for moves in a draft like this? Yes, he will. GMs are frequently given the chance at redemption, and if Dumars landed a big heist this June in the draft, people would be more apt to forgive the Darko debacle of 2003.
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