Buddy Hield of the Indiana Pacers has quietly had one of the best, most efficient careers in his draft class, yet extension talks with the Pacers have ceased. And the Detroit Pistons should give them a call.
Buddy Hield has skills the Detroit Pistons need
After originally being drafted by the Pelicans in 2016, Buddy Hield was quickly shipped off in 2017 to the Sacramento Kings, and spent the bulk of his young career as an efficient offensive weapon. During his first year with the Kings, Hield was named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team and would become the fastest player to make 1,000 3-pointers, needing only 350 games to do so.
After being traded to the Indiana Pacers at the 2022 deadline in a deal that would also send Tyrese Haliburton to Indy, Buddy has just done more of the same. During the 2022-2023 season, Hield had 288 three-pointers made (2nd in the NBA), a 42.5 percentage from 3-point range overall, 43.8 percent on pull-up threes, 47.6 percent from the corners, and was in the 86th percentile in plus/minus.
Along with the advanced stats and efficiency, Buddy ‘s health and durability is another plus he brings with him. Throughout his seven-year career, Hield has missed just six NBA games. Never missing more than two games in a season, Buddy has played in 548 out of a possible 554 games. In today’s NBA, a stat like that simply does not exist. Having his leadership and shooting ability to count on every single night is a huge advantage.
Fast forward to earlier this week, and reports coming out of Indiana are that the Pacers and Hield are halting extension negotiations and will look to find a trade for the swingman. A trade that Detroit would be smart to pursue. Listed as a possibility in PistonPowered’s potential 2024 free agency signings, Weaver could jump start that by acquiring Hield and beginning to work on an immediate extension. It’s not clear what the Pacers are asking for in return, but they clearly are prepared to lose Hield’s shooting ability due to the fact that he can and will demand a fairly large extension. One they are clearly not inclined to commit to. *Que Bojan Bogdanovic*
Trade between the Detroit Pistons and Indiana Pacers
Indiana is in a win-now situation, and replacing Buddy with Bojan is essentially an older, cheaper version. Both players are extremely efficient shooters, but one is demanding an extension. Indiana’s offense shouldn’t miss a beat with the trade-off. If Weaver can add a second-round pick or two to get this deal over the finish line, he should not hesitate. Buddy fills exactly what Detroit needs in elite shooting at the two, or possibly three, while continuing with Detroit’s want to be the most athletic team on the court. Having a roster that at times struggles with shooting from guys like Ausar, Ivey and possibly Cade, Hield can carry that load offensively. His spacing would even open up the paint for Jalen Duren to do what he does best.
With all that being said, the Detroit Pistons will absolutely not be the only team making their best offer. It’s been reported that multiple teams are expected to express interest in a possible trade for Hield. It’s likely the Dallas Mavericks, Philadelphia 76ers, Orlando Magic, and many others will be in the mix.