Pistons take over Ron Holland with No. 5 pick in 2024 NBA Draft

There was no chaos. The Detroit Pistons have regularly been the talk of the NBA Draft in recent years, maneuvering in all directions to leave the annual event with multiple lottery picks. It has at times been a tornado of confusion to follow.

This was under the direction of former general manager Troy Weaver. Now under the direction of new president of basketball operations Trajan Langdon, the Pistons went straight to the point.

Detroit selected G League Ignite player Ron Holland with the 5th pick in the 2024 NBA Draft on Wednesday night. The team, according to league sources, has had discussions with the Memphis Grizzlies, who held the 9th pick, about a move back, but nothing substantial has been presented to Detroit worth the risk. penalty.

“I didn’t expect to go to Detroit,” said Holland, who said he had planned a workout with Detroit earlier in the process but that didn’t happen and he also hoped go from fourth to 13th place. β€œIt was a huge surprise to me. Now that it’s done, I’m excited and ready to get to work.

Let’s start with the good: Holland, who stands 6-foot-7 and only 18 years old, is a standout athlete. He was Ignite’s best player last season, averaging 19.5 points, 6.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game. He is an excellent cutter and can get to the rim with line-drive and dribble attacks. He might have the best mover, on both ends of the floor, in this class, with positional versatility on the defensive end to boot. If you’re a fan of what Ausar Thompson brings, Holland has some of those qualities, even some of the less desirable ones.

Now for the bad: Like Thompson, Holland’s shooting has a long way to go. He was under 30 percent on all jump shots in the G League and wasn’t a good free-throw shooter either. He wasn’t an efficient scorer with the Ignite, but that could be partly attributed to poor roster and his team’s lack of structure last season. Additionally, Holland needs to improve his half-court decision-making considerably. He also had 11 more turnovers than assists this season.

Langdon insinuated during his introductory press conference last week that Detroit is still very interested in developing its youth. So it’s no surprise that he and his team chose to embark on a strong surge in Holland, who is arguably one of the best prospects the Ignite has produced.

It was a bit of a mystery during the draft as to which direction Langdon would take, as this is his first time leading his own show. However, if you look at the New Orleans Pelicans, where Langdon was general manager before joining the Motor City, it was clear they had a guy. Trey Murphy III (2021), Herbert Jones (2021) and Dyson Daniels (2022) are all versatile, 6-7 wings with a wingspan of 6-10 or more. Holland fits this archetype, with a wingspan of 6-10.

Drafting Holland takes the idea even further that Detroit has a lot of confidence in new assistant coach Fred Vinson, considered one of the best shooting coaches in the NBA. He was credited with helping turn below-average 3-point shooters like Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Herb Jones and Naji Marshall into legitimately good from 3.

β€œHe has one of the biggest upsides in the draft,” Langdon said. β€œWe hired Fred Vinson for a reason, to take risks like this. If his shot succeeds, he will become a real player.

Langdon said last week that he plans to continue shooting this offseason, and with Holland drafting, it’s clear the Pistons will do so via trade or free agency. They preferred to take advantage of the draft to take a big hit. Detroit is always in need of high-end talent, and everyone you talk to will tell you that Holland has one of the highest prospects in this class. However, perks don’t always translate into fame.

Langdon and the Pistons are banking on their ability to cultivate an environment conducive to internal growth. This is what the most stable organizations and those furthest from major markets have.

The real work begins now in Detroit.

(Photo by Adam Silver and Ron Holland: Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

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