Detroit and Atlanta have been engaged in talks on a trade centered on Andre Drummond, league sources tell ESPN. No deal imminent, but Detroit is talking to Hawks and several other teams on Drummond, sources said.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 3, 2020
This comes on the back of owner Tom Gores making his most public comments regarding rebuilding and a stepping back from commitment of a long-term future with Drummond
It’s natural that the Pistons should be shopping their All Star center in the midst of their disappointing season. But of course, a rumor coming from Wojnarowski has a bit more juice to it than your average tweet.
Atlanta has both the assets and motivation to make a move for Drummond. As I mentioned in my trade season piece from last week, they could be the best potential fit for a Dre trade. They have expiring contracts in the form of Chandler Parsons, Evan Turner, and Allen Crabbe, lots of talented but underperforming wings like Cam Reddish, DeAndre Hunter, DeAndre’ Brembry, and Kevin Huerter, and the worst center rotation in the league.
Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reported that the locker room situation in Atlanta has deteriorated and Trae Young has had some pretty glum public comments.
At 7-27, the Hawks have the worst record in the league. But they also have a rather promising future between the pairing of Young and John Collins. Drummond would make plenty of sense as a pick and roll partner to step into the mix.
Atlanta has the most cap space in the league for the summer and would be presumptive bidders for Drummond if he opts out of the final year of his contract.
For the Pistons, the life of Andre Drummond in Detroit has run its course. It’s almost a year to the day when I posted that a breakup was needed, and it’s only become clearer this season. Drummond’s tenure in Detroit has always been defined by his highs and lows. His all-time great rebounding. His poor shooting efficiency. His pick and roll gravity. His post ups. His block and steal numbers. His disinterest defensively.
The Hawks also own the 2020 first round pick from the Brooklyn Nets and the 2022 first round pick from the Oklahoma City Thunder - both nice sweeteners, since the Hawks’ pick that will likely be toward the top of the 2020 draft wouldn’t likely be on the table.
Of course, I personally don’t care what the Pistons get in return for Drummond. He just needs to go. But the Hawks at least present a nice opportunity to save face. If they could get one of the expiring contracts and, say, Reddish in return, it wouldn’t feel quite like such a dumping. Something like a Nic Batum for Drummond wouldn’t quite keep the same warm fuzzies.
Besides, Drummond is the most talented player the Pistons have drafted since Grant Hill. He’s spent eight years with the team. He’s led the league in offensive rebounds every year for the past seven seasons. From a personal perspective, I’ve written more words about Andre Drummond than I have any other human being - including myself. That’s so weird!
Drummond’s departure would be bittersweet. It’d be a failure of achieving potential and a failure of development. But it’d also be an important move forward for the franchise. Let’s hope that there’s traction to Woj’s tweet.