The New York Knicks and Detroit Pistons have a tentative agreement in place on a trade that will send Derrick Rose to New York in exchange for Dennis Smith Jr. and draft compensation, according to Shams Charania and James Edwards of The Athletic.
It is not currently clear what the draft compensation entails, but the Knicks have plenty of extra draft picks to offer — including one of Detroit’s own.
The Knicks have Dallas’ 2021 first from the years-old Kristaps Porzingis trade. With Dallas struggling, that is obviously not going to be on the table.
New York also owns two second-round picks from other teams. Charlotte’s and Detroit’s. The Pistons pick is from the old Khyri Thomas trade that saw Detroit trade up into the second round to grab Thomas.
Stretching into the future, New York also owns a 2023 first from Dallas, 2023 seconds from Utah and Detroit, the more favorable second-rounder in 2024 from Utah or Cleveland and a 2026 second-round pick from Minnesota.
Rose isn’t likely worth a first-round pick at this point so the hope would be that Detroit could secure one or both of those 2021 second-rounders, and if only one is obtainable then the Pistons getting its own second-rounder back would be a big win. That pick is likely to be up near the top of the second round and pretty valuable.
Smith Jr, meanwhile, is not very good and has fallen completely out of New York’s rotation. In coming to Detroit, I’m not sure how likely he would be to land in the rotation. If the Pistons want to get a better look at Saben Lee and/or Frank Jackson, Smith could still fall outside the rotation. And once Killian Hayes comes back from his hip injury, if he returns this season, all the point guard minutes would likely be taken by Delon Wright, Hayes, Lee and Jackson.
So, yeah, this move isn’t about Smith Jr., and instead is all about that potential future draft compensation. And opening up minutes at point guard. A winning move for the rebuilding Pistons, for sure.