Free agent who could improve the Pistons’ shooting

Yuta Watanabe #18 of the Toronto Raptors warms up ahead of their NBA game against the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images)
Yuta Watanabe #18 of the Toronto Raptors warms up ahead of their NBA game against the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Pistons need to improve in a lot of areas if they are going to be competitive next season.

They were at the bottom of the league in pretty much every category on both sides of the ball, which will hopefully improve with the return of Cade Cunningham to go along with whatever offseason additions they end up making in the draft, free agency and trades.

One area they must improve is the overall shooting, as the Pistons were dead last in field goal percentage this season and just 21st in 3-point percentage.

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Having shooters around Cunningham and Jaden Ivey will be key to opening up the floor and there are some good shooters on the free agent market that the Pistons could target.

One of them is veteran Yuta Watanabe, who is one of the best 3-point shooters in the NBA and will be an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Detroit Pistons: NBA free agent Yuta Watanabe

Yuta Watanabe hasn’t played big minutes in his 5-year NBA career, but he is coming off his best season for the Nets in which he averaged 5.6 points in 16 minutes per game, both career highs. He’s already 28-years-old, so wouldn’t fall into the category of high profile free agents this offseason.

He’s not super athletic, but Watanabe is very skilled with the ball, and can do one thing very well, which is shoot the 3-point shot. He hit 44 percent of his 3-point shots this season and has one of those fluid left-handed shots that always look like they are going in.

He’s a guy who can get hot and score points in bunches off the bench, and would be a great fit with the Pistons young guards. This is especially true if the Pistons plan to play two bigs that can’t shoot.

You can imagine Cade getting into the middle of the court, the defense collapsing and Watanabe being wide-open for shots as you can see him do with Kevin Durant in this highlight:

He was basically on a league-minimum deal this season at $1.9 million, and while he’s likely to get a raise from that, he’s not a guy who will break the bank and would be a big upgrade to the Pistons’ bench shooting.

Watanabe is also extremely popular in Japan and would bring along a massive fanbase, which would help elevate the Pistons’ international appeal, which does have value.

He’s a guy the Detroit Pistons should take a hard look at when they are filling out their bench this offseason, as he would give them another 3-point sniper on a team that needs floor spacing.

dark. Next. Is there a trade out there for the #1 pick?