Dwane Casey Agrees to Reported 5-Year Contract with Pistons

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistJune 11, 2018

MIAMI, FL - APRIL 11:  Dwane Casey of the Toronto Raptors reacts against the Miami Heat during the first half at American Airlines Arena on April 11, 2018 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
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Dwane Casey wasn't out of work long. 

Casey and the Detroit Pistons came to terms Monday on a contract to fill their vacant head-coaching position. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN first reported the agreement, noting it is for five years.

“I am excited and honored to join the Detroit Pistons, a franchise with a championship history and a roster that is ready to win now," Casey said in the team release.  “Tom really won me over with his vision for the team and the city. He clearly wants to deliver for the fans in Detroit and I believe in the strength of his leadership to do so.

“I’m confident that this team has the pieces in place to compete at a very high level. There is a lot of talent, a solid core and some exciting young players eager to get better. We’re getting to work right away on the things that will make us all successful.”

Casey spent the last seven seasons as the Raptors' head coach, and he lifted the club to new heights during that run. Between 2011-2018, Casey led the Raptors to a record of 320-238. This past season, Toronto rattled off a franchise-record 59 wins en route to capturing the Eastern Conference's No. 1 seed. 

However, Casey and the Raptors could never get over the hump. 

Despite making five straight trips to the postseason between 2014-18, Toronto bowed out in the first round twice and the second round twice while making a single trip to the Eastern Conference Finals (2016). And in each of the last three seasons, the Raptors' title hopes were dashed by LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers

Despite those slip-ups, Casey's leadership style endeared him to a group that morphed into one of the league's most consistent. 

"Case is one of the best coaches I've ever had," Kyle Lowry told Wojnarowski. "We didn't always see eye to eye, but he let me be me. He was huge for my growth as a man and an NBA player."

That should be welcome news for the Pistons, who need Casey to provide a developmental spark after they finished each of the last two seasons shy of 40 wins. 

On the plus side, Casey will have a solid talent base to work with that includes Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond as he tries to transform the Pistons into annual contenders following an extended stay in Eastern Conference purgatory.  

"They have some great young players with Andre, Stanley Johnson, Reggie Jackson," Casey said on The Jump (h/t MLive.com's Ansar Khan). "Reggie Bullock is an excellent shooter. They have a lot of good pieces. Stan Van Gundy did an excellent job of coaching that team. They only missed the playoffs by five games. We'll see where it goes."