January 10th 2021 at 2:28pm CST by Dana Gauruder
Saddiq Bey is making the Pistons look wise after they engaged in a three-team deal to land the No. 19 pick in the draft, James Edwards of The Athletic writes. The rookie forward from Villanova was averaging 10.4 PPG and 45.7% from 3-point range entering Sunday’s action, though he needs to do a much better job finishing around the rim, Edwards notes. Bey has also display uncommon maturity and has elevated his play in crunch time, Edwards adds.
We have more from the Central Division:
- Jerami Grant has impressed fellow Pistons forward Blake Griffin with his expanded offensive role, according to Omari Sankofa II of the Detroit Free Press. Grant inked a three-year, $60MM contract in a sign-and-trade with Denver in large part because he wanted to be a go-to scorer. He’s posted back-to-back 31-point games. “I’m very impressed with his patience and his decision-making in games. He doesn’t settle,” Griffin said. “He’ll size somebody up. Seems like he can get to the hole whenever he wants and he does a great job of finishing.”
- Prior to suffering a shoulder sprain, Cavaliers guard Darius Garland was emerging as the most improved player of the NBA’s sophomore class, Garrett Brooks of Basketball Insiders opines. Garland, the No. 5 pick of the 2019 draft, is averaging 17.2 PPG and 6.3 APG and shooting 46.9% from 3-point range.
- Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff has been forced to improvise due to a number of injuries, especially to his backcourt, and he’s using an old-school scheme, Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer writes. “It’s a flashback to the 80s,” Bickerstaff said. “We try to slow the game down. We try to make it half court. We’re calling sets and running plays that literally they ran into the early’ 90s, late ’80s when they played with those bigs.”