Detroit Pistons can do absolutely nothing at trade deadline, and it’s fine

Jerami Grant #9 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Jerami Grant #9 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Pistons, Cade Cunningham
Detroit Pistons guard Cade Cunningham Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports /

There are 3 big reasons why the Detroit Pistons should sit-out the trading deadline frenzy

3. Yawning cap space

According to Spotrac, the Pistons will have $20 million of practical cap space available in the off-season, mostly because Blake Griffin’s contract will have run out. Also, a bunch of players, including Hamidou Diallo, Frank Jackson and Trey Lyles are on club options for next season.

If Weaver decides to max his cap space: just release all cap holds, not pick up player options (he can always negotiate a deal later, like he did with Cory Joseph and Rodney McGruder last summer) and cut all players without guaranteed contracts, Detroit could have as much as $39 million in cap space.

That gives Weaver a lot of flexibility. He will have the cap space to absorb large contracts (Ben Simmons?), as more players become available then, then in the middle of the season.

Also, don’t forget, Weaver came from Oklahoma City, where taking toxic contracts (Ben Simmons?) for draft picks was frequently done by general manager Sam Presti.

Detroit has a lot more maneuverability in terms of salary after the season.

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2. Know where they will draft

Looking at the history of the Detroit Pistons in the draft, they have done well when having the No. 1 pick in the draft, but that has only happened every 51 years. The other times, not so much success, even with top 10 picks.

Some drafts are deep, but most experts say this is not one of them. The top three prospects: Jabari Smith of Auburn, Chet Holmgren of Gonzaga and Paolo Banchero of Duke are all a notch above the rest of the field.

(Jaden Ivey of Purdue is a solid No. 4, but he plays the same position as Cade Cunningham, so Detroit really does not need him)

The NBA Draft Lottery is usually held in mid-May, so Detroit will know exactly where they pick before free agency and the summer trade season opens up.

The Pistons, assuming they do not move out the bottom three records in the NBA, will have a 14-percent chance of again getting the No. 1 pick, and 52-percent chance of being in the top four.

The spot Detroit is, statiscally, most likely to end up in is at No. 5, with a 27.9% chance.

If the Pistons actually end up in 5th or 6th (a 48-percent chance), it could be in their best interest to trade the pick, for either multiple first-rounders or, pair it with a player, and land a big name (Ben Simmons?).

The Pistons strategy is much easier to plan when they know their draft position.