The trade deadline is 10 days away and the rumors are starting to fly. Hopefully the Pistons can make another shrewd move to enhance their ability to improve this roster. They are positioned pretty good to make this happen. They are a lot of quality players being talked about, but do these players really present the Pistons with an upgrade. Hopefully any deal will help convince Jose to stay by showing him that this team can be ready to compete in the central by next year.
We first need to find players that fit in with what the team needs, including both supplementing their weaknesses and enhancing their strengths. Their strengths are going to be the mismatches that their frontcourt create, and what appears to be there ability to push the ball since the trade. As good as Maxiell has played this year, adding another player with size who can rebound, dunk, and block shots is essential to ensure there is a minimal drop off when going to the bench. They are also going to need shooters on the perimeter to avoid teams packing it in the paint to negate their advantage, but these shooters are also going to need speed and be excellent finishers on the break. Lets also not forget about being good defenders.
Filling these spots will make them extremely tough to beat, but they would still be lacking in their ability to win playoff series. As we all seen in the Flip Saunders era, when you get in a playoff series teams will take away what you want to do on offense, forcing a lot of late shock clock one on ones. So now our fast, shooter, finisher, defender also needs to be able to create and get his own shot. Teams don't generally trade players with this much ability, as they are named Kobe, Lebron, Wade, etc. So I don't think we can expect everything from one player.
Looking at what this team currently has at the wings does not inspire much hope. Singler has suddenly become the only SF capable on the roster, and Knight and Stuckey have plenty of issues. It would be wise to get as much talent on the wing and let the best players earn their time. Singler runs the floor okay, can shoot the ball effectively, and has some potential as a defender. Knight has the speed, shooting ability, and plays solid but not spectacular defense, but might be to small to play 30+ minutes on the wing. Stuckey really only plays solid defense, but does have some ability to create shots for himself although he often fails to finish those shots at close range. If the team can play four wings any given day, three of them will probably need to be able to shoot, leaving Stuckey as the player they should most likely trade.
Now with two wings who can shoot, they can focus on acquiring a another shooter, finisher, defender, and someone who can create and finish in crunch time. Most of the names that appear to be available for trade are also free agents this offseason. Josh Smith has been linked to Detroit for years, and as recently as today. If he were here he would have to play SF(he is dominant perimeter defender) and would provide excellent backup minutes up front, however he doesn't shoot well or create his own shot effectively. I feel they should definitely pass on any attempt to acquire him as he wants max money, and leaves the team still lacking in shot creators. Tyreke Evans is another player who could be available. He has the ability to create and finish, while also being an improving shooter. At this point he is probably the best option as far as players to acquire. I'm just not sure the Pistons have enough assets to get him, unless a Stuckey/Jerebko package would work. They will probably just have to wait for free agency to make this move.
There really isn't a whole lot else available who could help this team. So Detroit's best option is going to be acquiring future assets for their current assets. Any deals they complete need to involve draft picks or cap space. This draft has some talent, I can think of a particular shooter, finisher, defender who would fit perfectly and should be available in the late lottery. There are also a lot of good big man prospects. As far as free agency goes, I think there are a few under the radar players who can help this team. No matter what happens, giving Calderon more reasons to stay should be top priority.