What does Boban Marjanovic bring to the Detroit Pistons?

The Detroit Pistons and free-agent center Boban Marjanovic have agreed to a three-year offer sheet worth $21 million. What does that mean for the Pistons?

Last year with the San Antonio Spurs, the 7-foot-3 Boban Marjanovic averaged 5.5 points and 3.6 rebounds per game with 60% shooting from the field. While these numbers aren’t initially impressive, his per 36 numbers of 21 points, 13.7 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks are an encouraging projection of what he could do with more minutes.

The San Antonio Spurs appear to be unlikely to match after signing big men Pau Gasol for 2 years, $30 million and Dewayne Dedmon for 2 years, $6 million.

Boban will start out as the third center next season and give the Pistons some more size.  

Aron Baynes did a fine job as the backup last year and could work somewhat as a compliment to Boban.  While Boban has a massive size advantage on just about every big man in the league, he is very slow and can be exploited outside the paint. Baynes is a little quicker and he would be able to handle backup big men that prove to be too quick for Boban.

Boban projects for the most part, to be a more efficient version of Baynes given similar minutes.  Defensively, Boban defended field goals at the rim 6% better (46% to 52%) than Baynes last season.  Offensively, Per Synergy Sports Tech, Boban ranked 2nd in the NBA shooting 71% around the rim among low volume scores and also shot 50% in the post.  You can see how he shot that high of a percentage around the rim with plays like these:

Aron Baynes has a player option after this season for $6.5 million and it’s very possible he could opt out to pursue a richer contract given the salary cap will rise again next year. Boban could then step into the backup center role if he doesn’t already this upcoming season.

Boban has all the makings of a Piston fan favorite due his monstrous dunks, large physical stature, and potential television commercials.