The best way for that to happen will be on the court. Pistons media taking a closer look at the pick are saying, and rightfully so, that Caldwell-Pope brings to Detroit credentials that are just as impressive, if not more so than Burke’s.
Some have suggested that Burke coming to Detroit would have put too many expectations on his shoulders and on the Pistons. It’s never easy for a college player to perform in his home state.
That’s proven to have been the case for a long time. Perhaps too much would have been expected of Burke too soon and the fans would not have had the patience with him or with the coaching staff to make him a steady and consistent player. But it would have been worth a shot. Burke is a talented player and didn’t get the National player of the year award for nothing. It doesn’t seem like Caldwell-Pope is really set to become any better than Burke would have.
Burke definitely would have been a fan favorite. Some have suggested that Caldwell-Pope will follow the same route as current Pistons president Joe Dumars did when he was drafted in the 1980s to play with Isiah Thomas. Dumars was little known at the time and the Pistons drafted him instead of another home-state favorite, Sam Vincent. Caldwell-Pope, especially with his deep shooting range, could eventually prove that Dumars was right.
But Dumars had nothing to lose and everything to gain by taking Burke. He still made a poor decision with the pick.