Pistons unable to reach terms with Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Reggie Bullock over contract extensions
Despite early indications that the team might be able to agree to terms with one, if not both, of Reggie Bullock and KCP, the Pistons will not reach a deal with either of their swingmen. As the Detroit Free Press' Vince Ellis and Hoops Rumors Will Joseph explained earlier in the week, it seemed a forgone conclusion that all involved parties would let the season play out before renegotiating terms during the offseason.
“We don’t have anything yet,” Van Gundy said. “We still would like to, but it’s not the end of the world. On those things, it’s gotta be something that both sides feel good about.”
While not entirely unexpected, the move does open up the possibility for other teams to give Bullock and Pope an offer sheet during the offseason. With the latter expected to garner some attention on the market, the team will likely look to reach an agreement with the defensive-minded shooting guard early into free agency, and Stan Van Gundy is confident in the team's ability to retain KCP beyond this season.
“I think so far he’s handled it really, really well,” Van Gundy said last week. “I don’t anticipate any problems, but we’ll have more talk on that stuff if we get to the point that it doesn’t get done, but I’m still hopeful we’ll get something done. I’m optimistic, I’m hopeful.”
The former Georgia Bulldog is held in high regard by the Pistons' front office, evident in owner Tom Gores' multiple statements stating he'd gladly go over the cap to re-sign KCP, but Bullock's extension is likely to be impacted by his performance over the course of the year. With the depth chart at shooting guard offering Stan Van Gundy quite a bit of flexibility, the former Tar Heel will need to show the Pistons that he is worth an extension.
Pistons designate Ray McCallum Jr., several others, as Grand Rapids Drive affiliate players
With the D-League Draft now behind them, Grand Rapids has continued to flesh out its roster, with several Pistons training camp invitees set to join the team. As Keith Langlois reports, Ray McCallum Jr., Trey Freeman, Nikola Jovanovic and Mamadou N'Diaye are all expected to don the Drive's jersey this season. Surprisingly, Lorenzo Brown was not one of the players designated by the Pistons, and his fate with the organization remains unclear after he failed to impress Stan Van Gundy during the offseason, and it seems a very real possibility that Brown has played himself off the Drive's roster.
Only N'Diaye did not see playing time with the Pistons during pre-season, having been signed then promptly waived prior to the start of the season. The 7-foot-6 center went undrafted out of UC Irvine this year, and averaged 12 points, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks in college. Jovanovic spent some time with the team during training camp and was waived after the team's first pre-season contest, whilst Brown and Freeman were both cut prior to the start of the season. McCallum was originally set to make the regular season roster, but parted ways with the team after the Pistons acquired Beno Udrih off waivers.
Joining McCallum & Co. in Grand Rapids are the Drive's six rookies, who include NBA journeyman Shannon Brown, and Australian import
Ben Quagliata Matthew Adekponya. Newly appointed head coach Rex Walters is excited at the team's potential, and is looking forward to getting the season underway on Nov. 11 against the Canton Charge. As with previous years, you can can follow any of the Drive's games game live via YouTube.