NBA / May 7, 2010 / 12:00 pm

It’s Time To Reunite The 2003-04 Detroit Pistons… In Denver

Carmelo Anthony, Dime #53

After the Nuggets lost to the Jazz in the first round of the playoffs, there were questions surrounding the future of everyone in Denver. Is it time to blow it up? Can this team ever win? These questions and more were raised. And one interesting idea that surfaced earlier this week was that it’s time for the Nuggets to trade Nene. But for who? It’s known that you don’t trade big for small, and who else is out there that could replace a 6-11, 250-pound bruiser? But I found the perfect trading partner: the Detroit Pistons. It’s time to see what that squad would have looked like with Carmelo Anthony.

That’s right, you may have already forgot. Although the Pistons won an NBA Championship in 2003-04, they made one small mistake. You know, drafting Darko Milicic over ‘Melo. Fast forward to 2010, and that mistake can be rectified.

The Nuggets team as it’s currently constructed isn’t going to get it done in the West. Blame it on whatever you’d like, but a Rocky Mountain mixup is needed. Fast. So let’s put the pieces together in what will be the blockbuster trade of the summer.

In addition to moving Nene, it’s no secret that the Nuggets are also going to look to shop J.R. Smith this offseason as well. Here’s how it would break down: The Nuggets would trade Nene, Smith and a third player (Renaldo Balkman) to the Pistons for Richard Hamilton and Tayshaun Prince. (And yes, this works in the NBA Trade Machine.)

For the Nuggets, the NBA world would finally get to see what that Pistons team would have looked like, albeit six years later. Starting Chauncey Billups, Hamilton, Anthony, Prince and Kenyon Martin (that is until they sign Ben Wallace to a free agent deal), it would be just like the Pistons of old.

For the Pistons, this finally gives them a legit center (by East standards) and rids themselves of Hamilton’s awful contract. Hamilton and Prince have been on the trading block all year, and this is might just be the best deal they’re going to get.

What is the likelihood of this happening? Close to none. But you can always dream.

What do you think? If you were either team, would you make this deal?

Follow Aron on Twitter at @the_real_aron.

Follow Dime on Twitter at @DIMEMag.

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  • http://www.dimemag.com Aron Phillips

    I really think that if Hamilton and Prince are ever going to win another chip, their best chance would be in Denver with Chauncey and ‘Melo!

  • IGP

    @ Aron

    I actually think that’s a good deal for both teams. They need a shake up.

  • http://www.robbz18.blogspot.com Robbi

    Interesting idea, but man, this is such a long shot! Still a very cool scenario to ponder, though…

  • Blue

    Did you really just comment on your own post? hahahaha…

    but i think it would be interesting to see. there is something about this nuggets team, the way it is, that i think they’ll never be able to get over that hump. they have the talent for it, but they just can’t get to the next level.

    but really how much do rip and prince have left? is their bad season just about being on a bad team?

  • le_hotdawg

    I wonder who will win the “Who can jack more threes than the other guy; BG or JR?” contest.

  • The Other Aj


    As a nuggs fan, I’m going to assume this is a gag article and you can’t be serious. Kmart at center? really? A washed up hamilton and prince when Denver has to deal with OKC, Portland…come on.

    I believe we do need a shake up, but not trading Nene. We need to lose Kmart and his contract and bring in a 4 who can shoot.

  • Celts Fan

    Aron – Nene’s a legit center by any standards. He can run the floor, moves fluidly, has got some touch, and can play D. he’s a bit injury prone, but, when healthy, he’s a top 10-15 center in the league to me, right in that 3rd tier w/ Perk and Marc Gasol and guys like that.

  • http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/703154723/the-soulchorea-project?pos=1 Kermit The Washington

    BRILLIANT!!! I never thought of this. Seems crazy, but it just might be crazy enough to work!!

  • http://nerditry.com nerditry

    1. It’s impossible to contend in the West when you are starting a team with a 6’9 C (Martin). Also, Kenyon is always injured giving them the ‘depth’ of Petro and Andersen.

    2. Smith is a bigger knucklehead than anyone on the Pistons roster and would not fit there. That team is not going to want him there.

    Rip would be a smart trade for the Pistons to Milwaukee if Salmons doesn’t resign. Redd is expiring and gives the Pistons some cap relief with a roster full of tough contracts.

    Gives the Bucks playoff and championship experience.

  • Octopus Jonny

    Don’t you dare put Rip anywhere near my Bucks. One of the worst contracts in the league. We’ve been through enough misery with Michael Redd and Dan Gadzuric.

  • daddy dolalrs

    As a pistons fan I would love that trade. It would allow the pistons to start stuck, JR, jerekbo, nene, draft pick (ed davis, al-aminu, cousins, favors) bring bg and charlie v off the bench. They would be no worse then 5th in the east.

  • jmg

    this is a late Aprils fool joke, right?? Kenyon Martin at C in the West and Tayshaun at the 4??? never. they wouldnt make the playoffs in the West

  • JAY

    @ #4…… LMAOOOO!!!!!!!

    It would have been so awesome if he preceded his post with…

    “FIRST!!!! YEA BABY!!!”

  • http://brgulker.wordpress.com brgulker

    Pistons fan here.

    Great deal for the Pistons. Franchise suicide for the Nuggets. Nene isn’t the root of Denver’s problems. Their lack of depth is. Rip’s awful contract doesn’t help remedy that, as J.R. Smith is the better player now and will be as Rip ages.

    No way that one happens.

  • yoda

    i don’t know what are you smoking but i want some :)

  • Lee

    Very dumb. I think Dime needs a 3 strikes and you’re out rule (Or not alowed to write an article for a month)

    Why would they trade for 2 players on their last legs ???

  • http://nerditry.com nerditry

    @Octopus – No question, but MIL is going to need to do their best to keep Salmons and get rid of Redd’s expiring. Redd is the opposite of how that team played with him out and can focus on Bogut/Jennings as the core.

  • Danny D

    Which is dumber: a) commenting on your own post, first no less, or b) thinking Kenyon Martin and Tayshaun Prince is a frontcourt that can get you to the playoffs?

    As dumb as I think a) is, the answer is b).

    Thanks for playing.

  • http://www.dimemag.com Aron Phillips

    Haha. Liking the comments. The reason I wrote the first comment is because I forgot to put it in the post and didn’t want to go in and change it. But that is a good idea. Maybe I should “First” some of my own stuff. Haha.

  • http://mail.google.com Jayhawk27

    They would do better trading for Monta Ellis and Andris Biedrins!

  • karizmatic

    I actually think this would be a decent trade, both teams need a shakeup and this could be exactly the type of thing they could use, of course the Nuggets would have to keep George Karl on leave, and somehow lure Larry Brown in to coach them.

  • karizmatic

    Oh except I would start Chauncey, Rip, Melo, Martin, and Anderson. I’d bring Tayshaun off the bench…I actually think this has some potential I especially like the idea of teaming up Melo and Rip on the perimeter.

  • sh!tfaced

    Adding Rip would fill so many holes in that Denver lineup. Not all, but it’ll be a damn good improvement.

  • Hollywud15

    this is horrible for Denver. We’re already thin with big men. We need to ADD big men, not subtract them. That team would never b able to compete with La…. i do sometimes wish that Melo got drafted by the pistons, cuz he wud already have atleast one championship by now

  • DVS

    Rip is still productive, even though his contract is big.
    Everyone knows Billips and Rip made such a good back court, and both have still giot a few years left. Couple that with Melo and you’ve got some serious scoring.
    Package Kmart(exp), Afflalo and filler for Rip and Prince and you have yourself a deal.

  • ay yo.

    UM, No.

    It’s already shown that you are not getting close to a championship without quality big men.

    The Nuggs need to find a way to get them a bigger center, and move Nene to PF.

    Kenyon Martin is a bum…

  • BackInBlack

    oh my god. This is the exact trade that happend in my NBA 2k10 draft combine. My team went 69-13, it was the crazyest team ever.

  • chief youngblood

    yeah but it would jam up the pistons with the same problem they have now , too many two guards.

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  • kowtz

    Frontline of Melo, Prince and K-Mart? Hahahaha… so much for rebounding…

    They gonna be killed by a speedy PG that crashes the lane…

  • bdk23



    that trade hands down would take denver from a top team i nthe west to outta the playoffs in a heartbeat! So what they lose to a massively underrated team in the playoffs without their HEAD COACH and everyone talks aboout blowing up a good team. Denver needs to shop jr asap! but getting rid of nene would just leave them so vulnerable down low and with the bigs in the west they just would get blown out every game. bottom line get rid of smith and use some money to sign a big name player. Rip wouldnt do shit in denver anyways i dont know whats wrong with u people..its 2010 its a new breed of ballers only a team with 3-4 big time players is winning a chip now

  • kayye

    I cant see Detroit wanting JR Smith.. All you Rip haters seem to forget..He’s just 31 and when not injured avg 18pts and 4ast. Nene yeah..but I still cant see the Pistons wanting Smith they dont like headcases and hes a BIG one also why would they trade for another shooting guard?

  • Ahmed

    Hollywud15,i think you are talking trash,rather than Melo who do you think would be better,bosh or wade?

    Meloman is one one of the best,i think second best after Kobe forget about James,Melo would have better stats if he was on Cavs..Only Kobe might be more talented than Melo..You ll see Melo will get a ring in Denver sooner or later!

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