Pistons won’t waive Rodney Stuckey

David Aldridge of NBA.com:

Pistons, per source, will not waive Rodney Stuckey

Stuckey will count $8.5 million against the cap during the 2013-14 season. After the season, he’ll become an unrestricted free agent.

Here’s what I wrote when the Pistons re-signed Stuckey two years ago:

The way I see it, there are three possibilities if Stuckey becomes a Pistons free agent in three years – none of which would place Detroit in ideal position.

1. Stuckey underperforms. This is pretty self-explanatory. The Pistons can’t really afford to have another* one of its players, especially their second-highest-paid player, have his production fall below his salary.

*Have I mentioned Detroit’s three(!) amnesty candidates?

2. Stuckey takes the next step and become a star. In the short term, that would be great. But in three years, unlike this time, Stuckey would have leverage as an unrestricted free agent. There are strong signs he wants out, and the Pistons only option for keeping him could very well be to overpay.

3. Stuckey plays like an $8.3 million-per-season player. He hasn’t done that yet, so it would take modest improvements. But that’s what Stuckey does: make modest improvements without reaching star status.

The Pistons were in a lose-lose situation with Stuckey now – either keep a less-than-stellar fit or let a talented player walk for nothing. They’re headed down the same path again. This time, they have a chance to do something about it, and they should.

Trade Stuckey before his contract ends.

I don’t think my assessment has changed. Unfortunately, Stuckey’s trade value likely has – for the worse.

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