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Pistons waive LiAngelo Ball, Anthony Lamb, two-way player Louis King

Detroit’s plans for development, end of roster remain murky

New York Knicks v Detroit Pistons Photo by Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images

The Detroit Pistons announced the team has waived two-way player Louis King and exhibit 10 training camp invites LiAngelo Ball and Anthony Lamb.

Waiving Ball and Lamb was always anticipated as the Pistons already have 16 players under contract before signing them, and the maximum a team can keep on its roster is 15 players. Letting go of King is a bit more of a surprise as he was a two-way player with the Pistons last season and it seemed like they might have wanted to stick around for another season of development.

New GM Troy Weaver seems to have other plans, though the immediate plan is not entirely clear at the moment. The Pistons still need to cut down the roster by one guaranteed player and the battle seems to be veterans guard Rodney McGruder against newly signed second-round pick Deividas Sirvydis.

Sirvydis has not even been able to join the team yet, though he is expected to arrive Wednesday according to Dwane Casey. Once he arrives he will have to go through COVID protocols and test negative for six consecutive days.

Obviously, the Pistons are not hinging whether Sirvydis makes the opening-night roster on performance in camp since he will spend almost no time in camp. And because Sirvydis signed his NBA contract, he is not eligible to become a two-way player.

That means McGruder might be the odd man out and that the Pistons have a two-way contract slot to fill should they choose.

Will they choose to fill it?

There is no guarantee there because it seems all but official that the Pistons will not be sending any players to a G League affiliate this season. The NBA did make new accommodations for two-way players to essentially spend unlimited time with the NBA team, however.

This means that while Saben Lee and a potential two-way player to be named later can’t get any run with the Grand Rapids Drive this season, they could practice with the Pistons and be around developmental coaches without restriction.

So why did the Pistons sign two players to Exhibit 10 contracts with no intention of sending them to the G League only to waive them within three weeks? Your guess is as good as mine but maybe they just wanted the extra camp bodies and liked the toughness (Lamb) and length (Ball) each player provided.