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Larry Brown defends Pistons’ Joe Dumars for drafting Darko Milicic

Larry Brown, Joe Dumars, Darko Milicic, Pistons

In the decorated NBA Draft class 2003 which featured LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh, then Detroit Pistons general manager Joe Dumars selected Darko Milicic as the No. 2 pick. While things didn’t pan out as expected, former coach Larry Brown was not disappointed with how everything turned out.

Brown, who guided the Pistons to the 2004 NBA title, defended Dumars’ choice. For him, Dumars and the front office were the ones responsible for arranging a team that upset the Hall of Fame-studded Los Angeles Lakers squad.

“It is what it is because the same people that drafted Darko were smart enough to trade for Ben Wallace,” he said, per Lauren Williams of M Live. “Smart enough to draft Tayshaun Prince, smart enough to trade for Rip Hamilton, smart enough to trade for Chauncey Billups, smart enough to trade for and believe in Rasheed (Wallace). So you know, it is what it is.”

Milicic spent two and a half seasons with the Pistons. He was traded in February 2006 to the Orlando Magic after it was deemed that he wasn’t a good fit for the Pistons. After all, after Detroit won the title, they remained a legitimate title threat for a couple more years. At face value, it seems a good place to be for any player.

But for Milicic to bloom, he had to play and be actually on the floor. But a team contending for a title needs a crop of veterans, not a young gun who needs lessons. Milicic simply had no place in the Brown-led squad.

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