It was a tail of three seasons for Detroit last year. They got off to the worst start in basketball, but after they traded liability Josh Smith, they played way better. That lasted until Brandon Jennings tore his achilles in a game against Milwaukee.
Brandon Jennings G
Reggie Jackson G
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope F
Stanley Johnson F
Andre Drummond C
Ersan Ilyasova F
Marcus Morris F
Danny Granger F
Greg Monroe F (signed with MIL)
Andre Drummond's production
The Detroit Pistons have a young, promising starting lineup with guys like Reggie Jackson, Stanley Johnson, and Andre Drummond, but they aren't a team that is expected to perform to the likes of a Miami Heat team or an Orlando Magic team. They are more likely to finish in the middle of the pack of the teams that miss the playoffs this season.
Detroit added former Thunder guard, Reggie Jackson, this offseason, who looks like a guy that could do some damage alongside Brandon Jennings. Also, the Pistons drafted Forward Stanley Johnson with their first round pick, who also looks like a promising young athlete that will get his fair share of touches with Detroit this year.
The bench depth is primarily at the 3-4 positions, with guys like Danny Granger, Marcus Morris, and Ersan Ilyasova, the Pistons have some quality three-point shooters coming off their bench this season. They don't have much depth at any other position, leading many to believe that the Pistons aren't going to be productive outside of their Starting 5.
The Pistons are really going to miss Greg Monroe. Monroe signed with the Milwaukee Bucks this offseason, leaving the Pistons a huge hole to fill at the 4 position, adding extra pressure to Stanley Johnson. Monroe was a physical presence who could grab a ton of rebounds and could score up to 25-30 points on any given night.
The X-Factor to this year's Pistons is Andre Drummond. Drummond has had an up and down first couple years in the league. Last year however, was a year that Drummond looks to build off of, as opposed to trying to rectify a crummy season. If Drummond can put up 20 PPG and 10-12 RPG, than his future, as well as the Pistons' future, looks very bright.
I frankly do not see the Pistons making the playoffs, but I could see them going 34-48, maybe 36-46. They will miss the playoffs but the future is bright in Detroit.