Detroit Pistons G Rodney Stuckey signed a 1-year deal with the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday night. Stuckey averaged 13.9 points this past season off the bench and had a career scoring average of 13.4.
Stuckey was the 15th pick of the 2007 NBA Draft in the pick acquired by trading Darko Milicic to the Orlando Magic. Former Pistons GM Joe Dumars believed so much in Stuckey that he traded 2004 Finals MVP Chauncey Billups to the Denver Nuggets for Allen Iverson just to hand Stuckey the starting point guard job.
Stuckey’s Pistons career was up and down. There were times when Stuckey looked like he was getting it and he was developing into the player that Dumars expected. Then there were other times where he looked like he only cared about getting his. Some of that can be contributed to his role being changed every season and playing for a few different coaches. He played for six different coaches in his seven years in Detroit. His role seemed like it was changing like clockwork, from being a point guard to being a scoring guard and even a positional change to the shooting guard. He just didn’t seem comfortable.
He also butted heads with coaches. He butted heads with Michael Curry, John Kuester, well everybody butted heads with Kuester, and with Lawrence Frank as well.
This past season, he played well off the bench as instant offense. He posted his highest field goal percentage since his 2nd year in the league. That was good Stuckey, when he had a clearly defined role and he was able to just look for offense. I think it was clear that he wasn’t a point guard and that he was a scorer. However, this past season could be chalked up to him wanting a new contract. I like to call it “Contract year Stuckey”.
I wish Stuckey the best of luck with the Indiana Pacers. The Pacers lost Lance Stephenson earlier to the Charlotte Hornets and the Pacers needed a replacement. Hopefully Stuckey can help fill Stephenson’s role and make a big impact on the Pacers. I also hope that Pacers coach Frank Vogel lets Stuckey just do what he does best and that’s score the basketball.