It was meant to be. It was the right move. It was the only move. The stars had alligned perfectly. We were not going to have to let go of Trey. He was still going to be able to be our guy. And then David Stern read the name of some guy named Pope and anger, disbelief, and frustration all came together to produce such declarations as "I am never going to watch the Pistons again." These reactions were natural. Visions of Trey nailing a 3 to cement a win with the crowd going crazy as the Palace were strong visions in deed, strong enough to turn a pick that was questionable at best into a pick that made perfect sense. The problem is that the pick never really made sense. Professional sports is a business, investments are made. Brandon Knight was an investment. Perhaps he is not a point guard in the John Stockton sense, but he is quite a hike from two guard, and while Brandon Knight has certainly been up and down, frequently down, through his second year, I can't say that there is enough of a sample size at this point to simply cash in those chips and start from scratch at a position that Joe checked off his list of needs when he drafted Knight just two season ago. Reports of Knight being "terrible" and other such descriptions are overblown. Softomore slumps are not the exception but the norm in the NBA, Knights was a little more perceptible than most, but to label Knight as one of the primary problems with the Pistons roster is absurd. In fact, to the contrary, the Pistons roster is littered with players that have proven that they are servicable at the point. True, at the moment, both Calderon and Bynum are unsigned at this point (I believe), but there is no reason to believe that they won't resign if presented with offers. Trey Burke is a special talent, but the Pistons are trying to build something. I don't think a log jam at the point when other needs could easily be filled makes a whole lot of sense. And while the product on the court is far from optimal at this point, there are the peices to make this team into something formidable in the short term, and like it or not, a wing/two with the ability to create his own shot is the glaring defeciency in the Pistons roster at this point. Pope looks like he has this in spades, and if a talented two guard on the floor only means that I have to look at Rodney Stucky any less than I currently do it cannot be that bad of a thing. Nobody wanted to let go of Trey Burke yet, and the sudden possibility that we would not have to made a bad fit look like a perfect fit, and lead many of us to a conclusion that anything else but Burke was objectively the wrong decision. It may have been, only time will tell. However, let's see how this kid looks before we write off the Pistons for ever. There is the chance that the Pistons got the steal of the draft. His very presence will certainly not stir up the images of glory to us as Trey would have, and the Palace will not enjoy the month of (articifical) sell-outs like Trey Burke would have. But I am both a Pistons fan and a Michigan fan. I am mostly a Michigan fan. The Michigan fan in me hated the pick, but after considering the fact that the Pistons are not the extension of my favorite college team, it may just be that my maize colored glasses convincted me of something that was not in the cards from the get-go.
Niko Porikos grew up in an NTDP billet home. Cool story.