Possible Pistons free-agent target not helping his case

Detroit Pistons v Dallas Mavericks
Detroit Pistons v Dallas Mavericks / Sam Hodde/GettyImages

The Detroit Pistons are in a familiar place in late April: At home watching the NBA playoffs. 

Watching the top teams in the NBA compete is a stark reminder of how far away the Pistons are from being one of them, as even the play-in teams finished at least 22 games ahead of Detroit in the regular season. 

Big change has to come, and fans are hoping the new president of basketball operations (whoever that is) can find a way to transform this team from the worst in the league to a playoff contender in just one offseason. Good luck with that. 

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Adding impact players in free agency is one route the Pistons will explore, but one of their reported top targets has not showcased himself well so far in the playoffs. 

The Detroit Pistons and Tobias Harris 

The Detroit Pistons have been connected to future free agent Tobias Harris for much of the season, as he’s one of the top unrestricted targets and the Pistons have more money to spend with any other team. 

Given their need for proven NBA players, Harris does make some sense, though it’s questionable if the Pistons should be using a big chunk of their cap space on a 32-year-old who has never been more than the third-best player on a good team. 

Harris has made more money than any non-All-Star and figures to get another big contract that could eat up a healthy portion of the Pistons’ cap space. 

Harris hasn’t helped himself so far in the playoffs, as he has averaged just eight points per game in the play-in and first game of the series against the Knicks, shooting just 41 percent overall and just 1-of-7 from long range. Harris has mostly been good in the playoffs in the past, averaging 16.9 points, 8.4 rebounds and 3.1 assists in 56 games for his career.

It’s only been two games, but Harris does not look the part of a guy who should be getting £30+ million a season, which he might on his next deal. Detroit needs solid veterans, but they can’t overpay for a guy on the downside of his career who at best tops out as a third option. 

Harris is a nice player, but he’s not an All-Star and the Pistons can’t pay him like one even though he has been in the past.