The Detroit Pistons roster is beginning to take shape with the team reportedly waiving veteran Cory Joseph and young guard Deividas Sirvydis, according to The Athletic’s James L. Edwards III and Shams Charania.
The team also waived Tyler Cook, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks.
The decision to waive Joseph is no surprise as he was set to be guaranteed a $12.6 million salary if he was still on the team tomorrow. By waiving him today, the Pistons only need to pay him $2.4 million.
The decision to waive Sirvydis is more of a surprise and is a roster space consideration more than a financial one. In fact, the Pistons will get no financial relief for waiving Sirvydis, who is guaranteed to make $1.5 million next season.
The Sirvydis saga certainly needs to be consigned to the dustbin of Pistons history, but the whole ordeal has just been odious from the beginning, through no fault of Sirvydis himself.
The Pistons had a first-round pick in hand and traded it to the Cleveland Cavaliers for four future second-round picks. They then traded one of those second-round picks to trade back up higher into the second round to draft Sirvydis, who most didn’t project to get drafted.
That first-round pick the Pistons traded became Kevin Porter Jr, who is supremely talented but also had issues with Cleveland that motivated the team to ship him to Houston, where he has played quite well.
The Pistons caused even more head-scratching by offering Sirvydis a three-year deal last offseason with the first two years fully guaranteed. Sirvydis’ agent also happens to be Michael Tellem, aka the son of Detroit Pistons’ extremely influential executive Arn Tellem.
The decision to waive Cook was expected as his $1.7 million option was fully non-guaranteed and the Pistons drafted two centers in the second round of the NBA Draft.
The Pistons, no stranger to having dead money on the books, are now on the hook for $1.5 million to Sirvydis. But they gain a roster spot that makes it easier to bring back players like Saben Lee, Frank Jackson and their four second-round picks while also being able to use some of their projected $16 million in cap space to fortify the rotation.
The Pistons could also choose to stretch and waive the salaries to open up even more cap space this offseason. Troy Weaver is no stranger to utilizing the stretch option as he has previously stretched deals for Dewayne Dedmon, Zhaire Smith, who will be on the books for nearly $3 million next season.
Stretching Joseph would be a $800,000 hit for the next three seasons and stretching Sirvydis would be a $300,000 hit for the next five seasons, according to The Athletic’s John Hollinger.
The last remaining move for the Pistons will be a decision on Rodney McGruder whose $5 million guarantee date is Aug. 15. Both are expected to be waived.
The Pistons could have up to $22 million in salary cap space if they stretched Joseph and Sirvydis and waived McGruder, per Hollinger.