Detroit Pistons: Pass or Pursue on 3 free agent candidates

Detroit Pistons Langston Galloway. (Photo by Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images)
Detroit Pistons Langston Galloway. (Photo by Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images) /
4 of 4
Detroit Pistons
Hassan Whiteside #21 of the Portland Trail Blazers Credit: Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports /

Hassan Whiteside

The Detroit Pistons basically fell apart after trading center Andre Drummond in February. They lost 12 of their last 13 games, and did not look good doing it.

If losing an inside scoring, big-rebounding, rim-protector hurt Detroit so badly, there is a quick fix: Hassan Whiteside.

The 7-foot, 265 pounder checks off pretty much every box as a replacement for Drummond.

Whiteside is a low-post threat, shooting 62% percent from the field while averaging 15.5 points for Portland last season. He is a rebounding machine, as he averaged an eye-popping 13.5 boards, and is a defensive presence with 2.9 blocked shots a game.

Currently the Pistons only have Justin Patton on their roster who is a legitimate center. Most people expect them to try and get back Christian Wood. But Wood could slide to the power forward position easily and play both spots.

With their cap space,  general manager Troy Weaver could swoop in and most likely outbid everyone for Whiteside. Most of his other expected suitors are cap-strapped contending teams.

Related Story. Detroit Pistons: the Big 5 candidates to play Center this year. light

Landing Whiteside fills an immediate need. It gives Detroit some breathing room if negotiations with Wood do not go well.

But bringing in Whiteside is not at all a no-brainer.

He is 31-years-old. Whiteside is not showing signs of slowing down, so far, but he is not going to be the Pistons long-term answer at that position.

Although Whiteside had great regular season stats, in the playoffs against the Los Angeles Lakers, he did not do well, averaging just 8.8 points.

Whiteside will be no bargain-basement acquisition. His four-year $98 million contract he signed with the Miami Heat just expired. Miami shipped him to Portland last year to make room for Bam Adebayo in the starting lineup.

He will expect to get paid, particularly if going to a team not seen as contending for the NBA title this year. How much of the salary cap space that Detroit worked so hard to clear, do you want to spend on him?

Despite his good statistical season in Portland, they are expected to go with Jusuf Nurkic as their starting center, as long as he is healthy.

The fact that Whiteside’s last two teams no longer had no interest in him being a starter, could be a red flag.

The big question involving Whiteside is; are the Pistons looking for short-term solutions?

If Detroit’s top priority is making it back to the playoffs this season, Whiteside would help. If they are looking to peak for a run at the NBA championship in a few years, Whiteside may not be the solution in the middle.

Next. 2020 NBA Draft: Should Detroit Pistons try for Boston’s triple play?. dark

In the end, there are not enough positives to bring in Whiteside for the cost it would take: