It should only be among the top 3 picks.
The Pistons, the worst team in the league, didn’t ask for much. Would they have loved getting the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft lottery on Tuesday night and the rights to Victor Wimpanyama? naturally. That was the dream. But an organization that just endured a 17-win season with its player watching from the sidelines would have welcomed a Scott Henderson or Brandon Miller with open arms. Only the top 3. That’s all they wanted.
Instead, the basketball gods handed the worst team in the NBA the worst possible score: the No. 5 pick in next month’s draft. Calling it a gut punch would be just fine. The result was like a sword splitting biceps. Detroit didn’t have aspirations to realistically pick that high again any time soon. This was the year I had the best odds at No. 1. It went from very close to now in a matter of seconds.
Life Rebuild Team.
Now, the Pistons must turn their focus on what to do with the No. 5 pick. General Manager Troy Weaver spoke to reporters after the lottery Tuesday night and said there are players he likes in that range. He also said that the franchise would not be opposed to trading the pick “If it’s going to help us move forward, we’ll enjoy anything. We’re excited about this draft group, but we’re going to try to move the team forward any way we can.”
Here, we will try to understand what the fifth pick in this particular draft might be able to land Detroit in a trade. To do this, I suggested trades to my fellow writers here at the athlete who cover which teams I believe will host a conversation for the fifth pick and what other things the Pistons have to offer. Admittedly, some of the commercial offerings weren’t very good. Still, the point was to help you, the fan, understand what is and isn’t possible. Some professions were good and considered beat writers.
Let’s get it in.
San Antonio Spurs
Pistons receive: Keldon Johnson and first-round pick in 2024 (via Toronto)
Spurs receive: The #5 pick in the 2023 NBA draft
James L. Edwards III: My reasoning here was very simple: Johnson is filling a void for the Pistons as a solid offensive winger who can be effective without the ball. His defense could be better, and I think he could be on a winning streak more. He’ll only be 24 when next season starts and, in my opinion, he’ll be on a valuables contract (4 years/$74 million). His annual salary decreases for the first three years of the deal, which begins next season. The Pistons also get a future first because I don’t think Johnson alone deserves the #5 pick in this draft.
Why do Spurs do this, you ask? Well, San Antonio could use option No. 5 to get a different winger or striker, like the future Spur Wimpanyama, he’ll be in a rookie deal for the next few seasons. More space for San Antonio will open this summer, too. I just don’t see Johnson with Tottenham by the time they’re really competitive again, so I could see a deal like this benefiting both sides. Cam Whitmore or Amin Thompson would be fun alongside Wimpanyama, right?
Alex Shafer: “This trade is really down to the Spurs schedule and how they want to go about rebuilding them, but transferring Johnson for selection allows them to get another young player in line with the times and sign Wimbameama, while the Pistons get a player who is willing to help them move up the pecking order. There is a case that The Spurs are keeping Johnson as well, because he comes through Pope’s system and has room to grow as a player. He can stay and continue to be part of San Antonio’s young core.”
Referee from the opposition strike: “strong show”
New York Knicks
Pistons receive: RJ Barrett, Evan Fournier, and a 2024 first-round pick
Knicks receive: Bojan Bogdanovic, James Wiseman and No. 5 pick in 2023
Edwards: The prize here is Barrett, who had just made a good post-season for the Knicks. Defensively, everything the Pistons get around fits and loses. Offensively, shooting is up and down, but it affects the game in other ways. I really like the idea of Barrett being a minor or third-rate player alongside Cunningham and Ivey. I’d love it more if it kept shooting. I would have accepted Fournier’s deal in order to get Barrett, but I would also need compensation in the future.
Fred Katz (Knicks beat writer): It will depend on the protection of the 2024 pick, but I think the Knicks will have to consider jumping on that one. Bogdanovic gives them more shooting, something they desperately need in the short term and is an intuitive fit alongside Jalen Bronson and Julius Randle. More importantly, That the fifth pick in the stacked draft would allow them to connect with their young talent for longer. I’m sure the Knicks wouldn’t feel good about parting ways with RJ Barrett after a solid post-postseason for the 22-year-old, but that’s a huge loss in return. They’re listening to me. That’s for sure.”
Verdict on multiplication: “You should be an Assistant General Manager!”
Pistons receive: Pascal Siakam
Birds of prey receive: Alec Burks, Bojan Bogdanovic, James Wiseman and No. 5 in 2023
Edwards: Given the prospect of Toronto restructuring its roster, the expiration of Siakam’s deal and the increased likelihood of looking for some sort of needle, the All-NBA selection is the best possible player I think Detroit could realistically get with the fifth pick. Of course, it comes bundled with other things, like really good players in Burks and Bogdanović, and a project in Wiseman. This one is very simple. I was trying to get Detroit a top 25 player in the NBA. Siakam, to me, is the only person who could make sense.
Despite this, the Pistons must be confident they can sign Sikham long-term to make the move. He will be an unrestricted free agent after this season.
Eric Koren (Raptors writer)“That’s definitely the kind of trade the Raptors would be looking at, if they really want to transfer Siakam. The problems are twofold. First: Even if the Raptors are like Wiseman, they’re in the center, assuming they bring back Jacob Poeltel, which I expect, and with Christian Koloko as a backup. Second: The Pistons are down to five. Scoot Henderson or Brandon Miller would be a clean lottery fit for the Raptors. The Thompson twins, Cam Whitmore, Anthony Black? There’s at least some overlap with Scottie Barnes, and questions about shooting them, which the Raptors can’t Really dealing with it next to Barnes and Poeltl. In short: Something like that is a possibility, but I think the Raptors are trying to clash with Portland first.”
Referee from the opposition strike: “strong show”
New Orleans Pelicans
Pistons receive: Herb Jones, No. 14 2023 Pick, Garrett Temple and Larry Nance Jr.
Pelicans receive: Bojan Bogdanovic and the No. 5 pick in 2023
Edwards: Again, I’m looking here. I am a huge fan of Jones. At 24 years old, he may already be one of the 10 best perimeter defenders in the NBA. The pistons need that, especially on the wing. 3 point shooting could be better but the defense and other things he does on offense trumps that for me. I would have preferred to have Trey Murphy III, but I wasn’t even going to offend Will by trying to get him. New Orleans could use a shooter like Bogdanovic. He could also use option #5 to get Cam Whitmore and attempt a questionable attack on Zion. Temple and Nance are additional salaries, though the latter can contribute to rotations.
Will Gilroy (The Pelican Beat Writer): Adding a No. 5 pick and an elite shooter like Bogdanovic would be a great way for the Pelicans to spice up an offense that struggled at times last season. However, they put an enormous amount of value in Herb Jones and what he brings as one of the best perimeter defenders in the NBA. I’d be shocked to see him move this summer. They’d probably be more interested if there was a clear choice in the fifth to target. Guys like Cam Whitmore or one of the Thompson twins wouldn’t make as much sense with this team as keeping Jones around.”
Referee from the opposition strike: “A solid show, but maybe not.”
Pistons receive: 3 in 2023 and Keon Johnson
You receive jackets: Bojan Bogdanovic, pick #5 in 2023 and pick #31 in 2023
Edwards: This isn’t a business proposition I’m proud of, primarily because I thought it wouldn’t be enough, but I tried to get Detroit into the top three in order to get Miller or Henderson. Portland has made it clear that it’s interested in competing as long as Ms. Lillard is on the roster, so it fielded one of the best shooters in the NBA. The Blazers will only have to go back 2 points and still get an elite shooter! They can use pick #5 to add another veteran. This was my area. Jason Quick hated it.
Jason Quick (Trailblazer beat Writer): Will the Blazers make the deal: No. Hell no. It’s no secret that the Blazers are open to trading the third pick, but they likely — and should — have aspirations much higher than the return from this. The only advantage here is his getting a 34-year-old pick “But the Blazers are flush with guys who can put the ball in. The Blazers need defense, size and ability to switch, and that’s not all.”
Referee from the opposition strike: “Why did you waste my time?”
Pistons receive: Jabari Smith
Missiles receive: No. 5 pick in 2023 and James Wiseman
Edwards: I may have tried to be too cute with this one, but I gave it a shot. All indications are that the Rockets will achieve that next season and make a big move or two. Smith, who I loved in last year’s draft, hasn’t had a great rookie season. Maybe Houston wants to bet on him and use options #4 and #5 to go and try to get a big fish?
Kelly Eko (Rockets win starter)Adding another top-10 pick may have caught Houston’s call in 2021 or 2022, but at this point James Wiseman just isn’t interesting enough to warrant kicking Jabari Smith Jr after his rookie season — especially given how he’s gotten momentum through Last 20 game of the year.The Rockets are trying to speed up the rebuilding process by getting veterans who are now winning to complement their young core, the core that includes Smith.Getting off two-way talent forward with Wiseman’s extreme upside and No. 5 pick in this The draft doesn’t seem like the way to go for the franchise. They have a higher draft pick and can sign better seniors than Wiseman in free agency. That’s going to work backwards.”
Referee from the opposition strike: “Are you well?”
The Pistons will pick the fifth spot in the 2023 NBA Draft. Who will they choose? Will they trade?
(Troy Weaver top photo: Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports)
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