Rumor: Prince to Thunder?

The offseason is always ripe for idle, baseless speculation, and I would say that the following entry from Bill Ingram at Hoopsworld qualifies. Following the Pistons’ signing of Tracy McGrady, Ingram wonders aloud whether Detroit and the Oklahoma City Thunder would make good trade partners, with the key piece being the veteran presence of Tayshaun Prince. Ingram writes:

Prince is precisely the kind of player who could help the Thunder go from a first round exit to a deep playoff run, and the Thunder could easily put together a deal that would land Prince in OKC. The fact that Prince is in the final year of his contract makes him an extremely low-risk, high-reward addition.

Ingram looks at the situation mainly from the perspective of the Thunder, but I don’t see how this would interest the Pistons at all. The best thing Oklahoma City could offer would be the expiring deal of Nick Collison, who makes about $5 million less than the Pistons. They also have B.J. Mullens, a project center who they have no use for after drafting Cole Aldrich. But honestly, a 29-year-old, injury-prone player who has never been much more than adequate and a project who probably isn’t good enough to get himself on the court is hardly the haul one could expect from a proven performer like Prince, even accounting for the fact that he is coming off of his worst season since his rookie year.

I’m not one that thinks the Pistons have to get a bonanza for Prince or the equally available Richard Hamilton. I would a draft pick or young player with potential for Prince or someone’s overpaid veteran, preferably taller than 6’9, for Hamilton. Dumars isn’t going to silence his doubters if and when he makes a deal, but he could certainly do better than gifting Prince to Thunder.

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Tags: B.J. Mullens Cole Aldrich Detroit Pistons Nick Collison Oklahoma City Thunder Richard Hamilton Tayshaun Prince

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