The writing appears to be on the wall for the Detroit Pistons this season — injuries and ineffectiveness have led to a disappointing 12-23 record and little hope of climbing into the playoff race. It seems like the team is ready to finally push the reset button, and also ready to move their biggest asset in Andre Drummond.
Vincent Goodwill, who used to cover the Pistons and is now a national NBA writer for Yahoo Sports, reports that the Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks and Toronto Raptors are among the teams that have expressed interest in Detroit’s All-Star center.
Drummond is friendly with Kyle Lowry of the Raptors and Kristaps Porzingis of the Mavs, Goodwill notes.
Boston, Dallas, Toronto have also registered interest in Andre Drummond, according to sources. Drummond has relationships with Kristaps Porzingis and Kyle Lowry— Vincent Goodwill (@VinceGoodwill) January 3, 2020
This comes on the heels of earlier reports from ESPN’s Adrian Wajnarowski that the Pistons and Hawks have been engaged with discussions on a Drummond trade as the Hawks look to improve it’s talent and keep young point guard Trae Young happy.
Chris Herring notes that Drummond and Young are good friends off the court.
Drummond is the NBA’s best rebounder and an adequate defender down low. Playing alongside Lowry would offer him the opportunity for the first time in his career to play alongside an elite point guard not to mention a bevvy of skilled offensive players along the perimeter.
Dallas, meanwhile, would pair Dre not with just an elite defender in Porzingis but also the league’s elite young point guard in Luka Doncic. The Celtics would love to shore up a lacking big man rotation and solidify themselves as a potential NBA Finals team.
The Hawks have no such delusions of grandeur. Instead, they want to shore up the weakest spot in their rotation, climb out from being the worst team in the NBA and make the tempermental and talented Young and other disgruntled players in the locker room content with the direction of the franchise.
A deal for Drummond would likely be centered around expiring contracts, a protected first-round pick and perhaps a young player Detroit could take a flyer on. That might not seem like a huge haul for Detroit, but Drummond has made it known he is likely to opt out of his contract this summer. There is only so much you can get for a pending free agent.
Drummond might make noise about willing to opt into the last year on his deal to go to a preferred destination, if it comes to that. Or a team might simply want to grab Drummond now to put themselves in an ideal position to retain him in the offseason.
Who knows what will happen, but I think at this point we are at the “where there is smoke there is fire” stage of this steady stream of rumors and Drummond looks like he will be playing elsewhere by the NBA trade deadline.