Langston Galloway can get buckets. That is his best NBA skill. He has a quick trigger and can knock down shots on the move or in catch-and-shoot situations. He can score from 25 feet out or scoop in a layup under the basket. But the Detroit Pistons may not need Langston Galloway. They have Luke Kennard, who has came into his own during the second half of the 2018-2019 season. They also have a trio of young wings that will vow for minutes next season in Bruce Brown, Khyri Thomas, and Svi Mykhailiuk. Galloway is a fine NBA rotation player, but Detroit wants to see what they have in that slew of young players. And it just so happens that all of them play the same position as Galloway. That’s not good news for the streaky 27-year old St. Joseph’s graduate. Langston Galloway may be the next player in the NBA to be traded.
Last season, Galloway appeared in 80 games for the Pistons during the regular season. He averaged 8.4 points, 2.1 rebounds, and 1.1 assists per game. He shot 38.8% from the field and 35.5% from the 3-point line.
As I mentioned, Galloway was streaky. There would be months in which it felt like he could not miss, such as November when he shot 41.1% from deep, or March when he shot a firebreathing 45.6% from beyond the arc. Yet there were also months in which Galloway simply couldn’t put the ball inside the round hoop. In December he shot under 32% from the 3-point line. In April, he shot 25.9% from the floor and an abysmal 22.6% from distance. For a player who is on the floor because he has a knack for putting points on the board, his wildly inconsistent play is inexcusable. And if it isn’t inexcusable, it’s still a good enough reason for Detroit to see what they have in all their other wings.
When Galloway is on, he is a very fun player to watch. He can be a jolt of energy on the court with his ability to run in circles before catching the ball and letting it fly out of his hands before his feet touch the floor. He has a tendency to make big plays that spark the crowd and his teammates both on the court and the bench. There are games in which he can be a human torch. But on the other side of the spectrum, there are nights in which he shoots 1-7, and last season, those type of nights took place far too often.
Outside of scoring, Galloway does not stand out in any other metric. He isn’t an above-average defender or anything of that sort, nor does he excel as a playmaker. Outside of shooting and scoring, those are the other two areas that guards would hopefully excel at. And that’s fine, not every player can fit all those talent qualifications, but if you don’t then you also can’t hold down a rotation spot for another season without the young competition being given the opportunity to take those minutes away from you.
But there’s more competition than the young bucks for Galloway’s time on the court. Tony Snell will likely start at small forward. Sekou Doumbouya is an exciting young prospect and the Pistons would love to be able to play him when the chance presents itself. And Detroit even went out and signed Joe Johnson, which may have just been a “what the hell, why not?” kind of decision, but he’s another player that could steal Galloway’s minutes.
Simply put, Detroit has eight wings and I would have Galloway sixth or seventh on the depth chart in terms of who I would want to give minutes to at either the shooting guard or small forward position.
And don’t say Galloway could play point guard, because Detroit tried that, and it didn’t work.
Certainly, Detroit will be able to find a team that wants Galloway. Shooting is at enough of a premium in the league that teams will take a risk on a streaky shooter simply because the payoff is worth it. A change of scenery wouldn’t be a bad move for either side. It’s not that Galloway doesn’t fit with the team, or is a locker room issue, it’s just that there are other players that Detroit should be giving his opportunity to. And for Galloway, going to a team that will use him would be perfect for him. His style of play would be perfect with Golden State, Houston, or really any team that likes to run and shoot.
So, in conclusion, don’t be surprised if Langston Galloway is the next player in the NBA to be traded.
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