The Detroit Pistons made history in the NBA Draft Lottery by becoming the first team with the worst record in the league to drop all the way to the 5th pick under the new odds’ system.
Congratulations, Detroit, your prize for winning 17 games is the 5th pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, try to contain your enthusiasm.
While there is still a very good chance the Detroit Pistons can find a quality player with the 5th pick, most experts consider this a fairly weak draft that has a massive drop-off after the first pick and another big one after the second or third, depending on who you ask.
With Troy Weaver under pressure for the first time as GM of the Pistons, he may decide that adding an unknown and unproven prospect with the 5th pick is not the best way to secure his job or reach the goal of being competitive next season.
This is why some in the league are talking about the possibility of the Detroit Pistons trading that pick in a package for a more proven player, and according to some reports, they are already pursuing such a deal.
Pistons news: Detroit “aggressively seeking trades” for 5th pick
The NBA Draft Combine was recently completed and most of the news that came out of it was not about player measurements or interviews, but about how many teams might want to trade their picks.
Let’s face it, after the first pick, this draft is a complete crapshoot, so it makes sense for teams like Detroit and Houston (who are trying to pivot towards competing) to see what type of player they could get by trading their picks since they already have rosters full of young talent.
Those talks are already happening according to Kelly Iko of The Athletic (SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED):
"“One of the underlying themes of the combine and hot topics stemming from last Tuesday’s result among league personnel was the expectation of Houston, Portland and Detroit aggressively seeking trades centered around their picks, albeit for different reasons.”"
This would be a risky move for Troy Weaver, as the 5th pick in this draft is not likely to land a star in a trade unless there is more attached. If he were able to use the 5th pick and Bojan Bogdanovic to get a player like OG Anunoby, it might work out, but if this pick gets moved for a role player or another “high-ceiling” reclamation project, you might see some revolt from Pistons’ fans.
Weaver is walking on a knife’s edge here, as he may have milked most of the patience he is going to get, but also can’t overextend and go after the wrong guy.
Unless there is a bonafide star available in a trade, he should probably just use it to add more young talent and try to complement it in free agency and later trades, as moving the 5th pick for a wrong guy could spell the end for Weaver.
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