Brandon Jennings is officially a member of the Detroit Pistons and likes what he sees of the team on paper. The addition of Jennings has Pistons fans confident of a return to the NBA playoffs for the first time since 2009.
But Jennings realizes teams have never won on paper and taking the new talent the Pistons have and producing victories on court will be another matter. Changing faces, including a coach, means a transition that isn’t always very easy.
By bringing in players like Jennings, the Pistons hope to develop more consistency in their starters. Players that have left like Brandon Knight and Jason Maxiell weren’t productive on a consistent basis. Jennings, the Pistons are confident, will be so much different in this respect.
The key will be blending in with his new teammates. It’s something that Ben Gordon was never able to do when he came to the Pistons as a high-priced free agent. Jennings has the numbers with 36.2 minutes, 17.5 points, 6.5 assists, 3.1 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game. But the number that makes some Pistons fans fret is the field goal shooting percentage of 39.9 percent from the floor and 37.5 percent from the three-point area. His 81.0 percent shooting from the free-throw line is more like it.
Coach Maurice Cheeks will earn his money by making sure Jennings plays with his new team like he did with his old one. Cheeks needs to make sure everyone clicks. He certainly has all the parts to get the job done.