What Pistons players are truly off-limits at trade deadline?

Cade Cunningham #2 of the Detroit Pistons speaks with Saddiq Bey (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
Cade Cunningham #2 of the Detroit Pistons speaks with Saddiq Bey (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /
4 of 4
Detroit Pistons, Hamidou Diallo, Saddiq Bey
Detroit Pistons guard Hamidou Diallo (6) celebrates and high fives forward Saddiq Bey (41) Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports /

Diallo and Josh Jackson could be trade bait

The Detroit Pistons have two athletic wings with a lot of potential. Looking into the future, it would be tough to give both Josh Jackson and Hamidou Diallo a lot of playing. If one of them has to go, February 10 is as good a time as any.

Who will stay and who will go between Jackson and Diallo?

Hamidou Diallo

Diallo was not getting much time in the early going, but worked his way into the rotation and, since Jerami Grant’s injury, has made himself a home in the starting lineup.

On a team without much raw athleticism, Diallo stands out. He is 6-foot-5 and can guard any position from point guard to power forward. His quickness usually means he is assigned the other team’s top scorer, unless they are a center.

Diallo has also found his place on offense. In a three-game stretch, with most of the team out on COVID protocols, he averaged 31.5 points a game.

The only downside is the one weakness Diallo always has had, the reason he was not drafted until the second round: his shooting. Diallo is only making 24.6-percent of his three-point tries. In a league obsessed with the trey, that does not help his market value.

But there are certainly NBA teams who would like a defensive-oriented wing with some scoring chops. But Diallo is just 23, so it would not be surprising if he stayed put, as he is of similar age to their young core.

Josh Jackson

The 6-foot-8 swingman is just so inconsistent. One game he looks like the No. 4 overall pick in the 2018 draft (picked right after Jayson Tatum), the next you don’t even remember he played.

Now in his fifth NBA season, Jackson is still just 24 but, after this long a period of time in the league, he might be what he is.

The Detroit native looked to have found a place in his hometown after doing well last season. He had a spot in the rotation to start this year, but lost it to Hamidou Diallo.

Jackson had a stretch in January where he scored 11 points or more in five out of six games, but his scoring has tailed off since then. He has never been a good three-point shooter and it is showing no signs of improvement.

Jackson is in the last year of a two-year deal he signed with Detroit. Having an expiring contract is a positive for cap-strapped teams.

Like Joseph, Jackson is a nice player to have, but a luxury for a rebuilding team like Detroit that needs future assets.

Since he will be a free agent at the end of the season, now is the time to trade Jackson.

Next. When it comes to draft picks, Detroit Pistons cupboard is bare. dark

Outside of Cunningham, anyone on the team is probably available for the right deal. Depending on what the offers are out there, it could be a very busy, or quiet, trade deadline for the Pistons.

The good news, unlike last season with Blake Griffin and Derrick Rose, is there are no players wanting to leave. There is no outside pressure for Troy Weaver to make a move, so he can just do what is best for the team.