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Pistons won't trade rookie contracts without getting same in return

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But role players with expiring deals? They're available for the right price.

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

With Thursday's 3 p.m. ET NBA trade deadline looming, there's a lot of chatter if the Detroit Pistons will make a move. But when playing with the trade machine -- or, you know, recklessly throwing random crap against the wall and publishing it -- keep in mind that Stan Van Gundy has said repeatedly he won't make moves that impair the Pistons' ability to compete for a playoff spot this year or harm their long-term goals of building with young, cheap talent.

From Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press:

"Not going to happen unless you get another guy back on his rookie deal," Van Gundy said when asked about giving up players on rookie deals. "Basically, our philosophy coming in is first-round draft picks and rookie deals, you're giving those up to either get similar back or if there's a star. If there's one of the real stars in the league then, obviously, everything changes.

"But other than that, no, those guys on rookie deals are too important, and we really like our young guys."

In other words, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Spencer Dinwiddie and (ha!) Andre Drummond are off the table. So who's available? Ellis indicates Jonas Jerebko, Luigi Datome, Joel Anthony and Kyle Singler "have been part of casual talks." Not surprisingly, all of those guys are secondary players with expiring contracts -- which suggests if the Pistons make any move, it's likely to be a small tweak, not a blockbuster.

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