With an open roster spot and veteran shooters other teams covet, the Detroit Pistons are likely to end up in their share of trade rumors.
NBA teams are currently paring down their rosters ahead of the 2023-24 season, which could put some players on the market for the Pistons to sign, but it’s more likely that they will keep their open spot to maintain flexibility for trades.
The OKC Thunder were one of the teams that needed to make cuts, so yesterday they shipped out Victor Oladipo and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl to Houston in exchange for Kevin Porter Jr. and two second-round picks. They will immediately waive KPJ, which will cut OKC’s roster down to 15 players.
The move started a chain reaction that will likely lead to more trades and certainly to more trade rumors.
The first came yesterday when Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports reported that the Pistons and Rockets had discussions regarding Alec Burks and Oladipo.
This doesn’t mean a move is imminent, only that Troy Weaver picked up the phone, and while I don’t doubt the conversations happened, this particular rumor makes little sense for Detroit.
Victor Oladipo to the Detroit Pistons doesn’t make sense
While the details of the discussion were not revealed, we can assume that Houston would be sending Detroit Victor Oladipo (and perhaps a sweetener) in exchange for Alec Burks. The move makes a lot of sense for Houston, as they’d be getting a reliable player who has been one of the better bench shooters in the league over the last several years.
Oladipo? Not so much.
Victor Oladipo has played 83 games total over the last three seasons, and while he has shown he can still be effective when healthy, it’s the “when healthy” part that is troubling. Oladipo is a former All-Star whose ceiling might be higher than Burks, but he’s hardly ever on the court.
The last thing the Detroit Pistons need is another injury-prone player, as they are already missing guys and injuries have been a big problem over the last few seasons. Oladipo, like Burks, is on an expiring deal, so there are no contractual or financial advantages, and it’s hard to imagine the Rockets giving up much more than a couple of second-round picks as sweeteners.
Is that enough for Alec Burks?