Observing Pistons guard Rodney Stuckey is often a study in perfect contrast between his on-court style, so-called reputation and his soft-spoken demeanor.

On the floor, Stuckey is aggressive, sometimes on the verge of reckless as he craves contact, thrusting his 200-pound frame toward bigger and stronger defenders.

Off it, he appears to be more comfortable in his own skin for the first time in a long time, no longer burdened by expectations or drama, ready to start his sixth NBA campaign with a clear head and sound body.

"Stuck has transformed completely, especially since moving him to the off-guard spot," said backup guard Will Bynum, who's been Stuckey's teammate since the 2008-09 season, Stuckey's first as a starter.

"I think he's always been comfortable with his talent but playing the point guard early, you have to be in charge of yourself first and then direct grown men in position to score. You have to have the right personality."