2022 NBA Draft: Trust Troy’s Process

Troy Weaver is eternally phaseless. He’s never excited, he never rushes through an answer, and while he’s answering your question about what just happened, you can tell he’s thinking about the things that will happen after several more dominoes fall .

The man has a vision – he calls it his process – and he never deviates from it. He only executes.

Boy, did he get executed Thursday night during the 2022 NBA draft.

After the dust settled, he told the media: “We have a lot of young people. We will not skip a step, we will continue the process.”

Time will tell if the elite athleticism and competitiveness of Jaden Ivey and Jalen Duren, his pair of newly minted lottery picks, will translate into NBA success. But there’s no doubt that Weaver trusts his instincts as a talent judge and that he’s set out to clean up a team that’s sorely lacking in the athletic department.

It can be said that Troy’s plan is bad or that he didn’t take the best available players on the board, but one thing is for sure – he will carry out his plan because he knows what it takes to make it happen.

Weaver’s first comments after fending off a series of reported phone calls from teams trying to lure Ivey away from Detroit after making the choice – “I don’t think we’re done yet, but we’ll see.”

And he said it as casually as if he were reciting his shopping list.

When the cashier called him draft night, he had the most explosive guard in the draft in Ivey, a player with Michigan ties whose mother is a college-level basketball head coach.

Growing up playing the game and understanding the work that goes into the game was one of the reasons Weaver was confident in designing Ivey.

“The moments will not be too big for him. He was there, he felt it,” Weaver said.

That mentality, Weaver said, will make him a player who has no defensive potential but rather a lockdown defender. And that will help him develop as an outside shooter.

For his part, Ivey said that being drafted into the Pistons was “a dream come true,” noting that he has strong family ties to the area.

When asked if he specifically wanted to go to Detroit and if he had done anything to convince other teams not to recruit him, a huge, embarrassed smile crossed Ivey’s face and he said, “It felt like I’m coming home. It felt like family.”

He then said, “I really wanted to go to Detroit, but I don’t dictate the draft and the teams should have picked me or they should have traded me.”

Prior to the draft, it was reported that Ivey only worked for Orlando and Detroit and that he was maneuvering to avoid being selected fourth by the Sacramento Kings, who eventually selected Keegan Murray.

Now a Detroit Piston, he makes a dynamic young backfield with Cade Cunningham.

Weaver now has a player alongside Cunningham who can explode to the basket, get to the free-throw line and do a few secondary ball handling and creations.

“Versatility, length, athleticism, competitive spirit. I look forward to seeing these guys play together,” Weaver said of his new backcourt duo.

But that’s not all of the athleticism he was able to add on Thursday. Weaver completed the second phase of his Jerami grant trade by sending the Milwaukee tips he received in that deal and redirecting them to New York and then Charlotte in a three-team deal, giving Detroit the second lottery pick that everyone knew was after Weaver. He also took over Kemba Walker’s last year’s salary, which he intends to forgo. The move allows New York to hunt Jalen Brunson freehand. Well then good luck.

He used this new lottery pick to select Memphis big man Jalen Duren, one of the tallest, longest and youngest players in the draft, who will be able to kick the ground and ricochet shots and to from day one To block.

“Elite physical gifts and elite hands,” Weaver said of his new center. “He’s a big rebounder and rim protector. He will put pressure on the basket.”

Weaver said he could form a nice two-big-man unit with Isaiah Stewart.

“They can play together. Horford and Robert Williams can play together, Cleveland has two big boys that play together. …Both guys are bringing hard hats and that’s what we’re looking for.”

What comes next in this process, it’s unclear where Weaver will turn. Unclear to everyone except Weaver.

Prior to the draft, the biggest open secret was that Detroit was motivated to take Grant’s salary off the books because of their goal of signing restricted free agent Deandre Ayton from the Phoenix Suns.

With the addition of majors, it’s unclear if Ayton is still in the cards. But Weaver said he would try to add some veterans to round out the list and help establish the kind of accountability and leadership Grant provided in his two years in Detroit.

“Definitely looking for some guys who can take us further.”

Troy’s trial continues.

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