If the Detroit Pistons are able to secure a top pick in the upcoming NBA Draft, trading down could be an option they explore.
With the most recent news being that the NBA Draft has been postponed and could likely be held in August or September, the Detroit Pistons will have plenty of time to decide who they’d likely to select with their pick.
Detroit currently has the fifth best odds to land the top overall pick in the draft, but in the history of their franchise they’ve never moved up from their initial odds. Fans should expect that they’ll remain at the fifth overall pick, or even drop down.
However, it’s a lottery for a reason. The Pelicans were one of the last teams expected to receive the top pick a season ago, but they did. So while it’s unlikely, there’s certainly a reality in which the Pistons are able to move up.
Regardless of what happens, Detroit’s Senior Adviser Ed Stefanski has recently stated that the team plans on drafting the best available player when the time comes, regardless of the player’s position.
It’s been reiterated countless times how underwhelming this upcoming class could be. Despite there being unquestionable talent, as it stands there doesn’t seem to be too many stars right now.
It’s not unreasonable to think that the Pistons could land the third or fourth pick and have a team call them wanting to move up in order to select someone like Obi Toppin.
Detroit likely wouldn’t be too inclined to move the pick considering the fact that again, it’d be the first time in franchise history that they selected higher than anticipated. However, this could wind up working in their favor.
For example, let’s say the Pistons end up with the fourth pick, and the Suns end up with the tenth. Maybe they’re sold on trying to surround Devin Booker with more talent and are set on drafting Toppin (or whoever else).
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Detroit could use this leverage to land future capital. The Suns don’t have a second round pick this season and neither do the Pistons, which would be nice to land if this trade were to be orchestrated so you could potentially look elsewhere if you’re sold on that.
It could work with the Spurs or the Kings as well. The mid-lottery teams who feel they need to make a decent splash in this draft could feel inclined to make the call.
It works out for Detroit as well, a team who doesn’t need a player like Toppin despite the hype surrounding him. If they were able to slide down in the draft and select someone like Killian Hayes, a player who they not only need but would actually fit, that’s a best case scenario.
Drafting a player who fits your system while also landing other assets in the process would be as successful of a draft as the Pistons have had in years.
To be perfectly clear; this is all hypothetical.
The reality here is that most teams won’t want to move up because of how weak this class is considered to be. So much of this theory is contingent on what the draft order actually ends up being, which we won’t know for quite some time.
So when that time officially arrives, it’s important to keep an open mind and explore every decision possible.