Pistons

Drummond, Kravtsov Give Pistons Inside Presence

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NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 06: Andre Drummond #12 of the Connecticut Huskies lays up a basket against the DePaul Blue Demons during their first round game of the 2012 Big East Men's Basketball Tournament at Madison Square Garden on March 6, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 06: Andre Drummond #12 of the Connecticut Huskies lays up a basket against the DePaul Blue Demons during their first round game of the 2012 Big East Men’s Basketball Tournament at Madison Square Garden on March 6, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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Following years of getting pushed around and playing soft interior defense, the Pistons finally got tired of being the little guys.

By adding two defensive-minded centers, the Pistons suddenly look much more imposing in the lane. They were thrilled that Connecticut freshman Andre Drummond slid down to the No. 9 pick in the June draft. Then, they pulled a surprise early in free agency by giving Ukrainian 7-footer Slava Kravtsov a multiyear agreement.

For a team that ranked No. 25 in defensive field-goal percentage and 26th in shot-blocking last season, a frontcourt upgrade was the top priority. Creaky Ben Wallace led the Pistons in blocks at 0.82 per game. Drummond, listed at 6-foot-10 but closer to 7 feet, and Kravtsov are both adept at swatting shots, and they bring unusual athleticism to the position. Centers who can guard pick-and-rolls effectively are also at a premium, and the Pistons feel as if Drummond and Kravtsov will tighten up their defense on those plays.

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