Possible Pistons trades with teams in salary cap hell

Nov 2, 2023; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA;  New Orleans Pelicans guard CJ McCollum (3) passes around the Detroit Pistons
Nov 2, 2023; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Orleans Pelicans guard CJ McCollum (3) passes around the Detroit Pistons / Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
2 of 3

Detroit Pistons trade with the New Orleans Pelicans

Scotto mentioned Trey Murphy III as a potential cap casualty, as well as Herb Jones and CJ McCollum. Of those three, Murphy would be the player the Pistons would most covet, as he's a long forward who is a lights-out shooter and would be the perfect complement to their young core.

But trading for Murphy won't be easy, as the Pelicans have already picked up his option for next season and it would be impossible for the Pistons to send out equal value in a matching salary of just $5.1 million.

Murphy can sign a big extension in the summer, but the Pistons would then have to wait until December or January of next season before the Pelicans would be able to trade Murphy.

The Pelicans have had issues with the trio of Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram and CJ McCollum, who haven't figured out how to complement each other. The trio has a negative net rating with pedestrian numbers on both ends.

McCollum also has two years remaining on his deal after this one, so moving him without taking back long-term money could be a priority for the Pelicans if they want to keep Murphy and stay out of the tax.

CJ for Bojan

This trade could work for both teams. The Pelicans get two shooters who can help them this season but who are on expiring contracts (Bojan can be bought out). It would save the Pelicans money this season and open up the space they need for the Murphy extension in the summer.

The Pistons get a 32-year-old veteran who is still getting nearly 20 points per game and who is shooting 44 percent on high volume from long range.

There are some questions of fit with McCollum, but he could start with Cade Cunningham or even come off the bench if the Pistons wanted to stick with their young backcourt.

Either way, he's potentially a value addition even though he's not a wing and could help the Pistons over the next two seasons after this one without wrecking their cap sheet.

McCollum helped the young Pelicans make a leap as a team and could do the same in Detroit.

But Memphis has an even better possibility.