Pistons Report: Drummond, Willis, KCP

Andre Drummond and the Pistons are aiming for a postseason return.

How can Detroit Pistons center Andre Drummond be even better? By playing even harder.

That appears to be the philosophy of Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy anyway.

“He’s already historically one of the best rebounders this league has ever seen,” Van Gundy said on “The Drive with Jack Show” on 92.1 FM in Lansing, via the Detroit News.

“Andre’s combination of size and athleticism make him very difficult for an opponent to deal with. With him, it’s having a better motor, to come every night with tremendous energy, getting up and down the floor, defending at a higher level on a consistent basis. That’s really it — it’s playing harder, more consistently and Andre has taken some steps this summer to make sure he does that.”

Drummond and the Pistons missed the playoffs last season, one year after showing promise and sneaking in.

Word is, it’s now or never for Drummond with the Pistons. If they don’t take the next steps, the Pistons may try to move on from Drummond and see what they can get in return.

But for now, that appears to be a ways off.

“There’s nothing holding him back from being a great defensive player,” Van Gundy said of Drummond. “If he takes that pride in that, we go a long way toward being a better team.”

Here’s more out of Detroit:

  • The Pistons signed undrafted free agent Derek Willis to a contract, Willis announced on his Twitter account Thursday. The deal is reportedly for one year. Willis is a 6-foot-9 forward out of Kentucky and will start with the team’s G-League affiliate in Grand Rapids.
  • It was a bit of a gamble for the Pistons to let young guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope enter free agency, and eventually, sign with the Los Angeles Lakers. Now, respected Detroit Free-Press writer Vince Ellis asks in a column, Are the Pistons right? Or will KCP win his bet?

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