The Detroit Pistons are in active conversations, though a deal in the final hours of the NBA Trade Deadline involving one of its major pieces seems unlikely, according to The Athletic. Still, there are teams registering serious interest in the Detroit forward, including the New York Knicks, the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers.
It has previously been reported that the Pistons are seeking a lightly protected first-round pick at minimum, and would most want either multiple picks or a good first-round pick and a good young player in exchange for Bogdanovic.
In his first year in Detroit, the 33-year-old Bogdanovic is enjoying the best offensive season of his eight-year career, averaging 21.3 points with shooting splits of 48/41/87.
James L. Edwards writes in The Athletic that the oft-mentioned Bogdanovic, veteran guard Alec Burks and young forward Saddiq Bey are generating most of the trade interest. Regarding Bogdanovic, The Knicks have several first-round picks available to move for the right player and little forward depth, while the Los Angles Lakers have one 2029 pick to surrender following its multi-team deal of Russell Westbrook that netted them D’Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt.
The Pistons, Knicks, and Galaxy Brain Speculation
The Knicks and Pistons have history on their side as well. Detroit swung previous deals with current New York management for Derrick Rose, a pair of salary dumps that netted Detroit Jalen Duren, Alec Burks and Nerlens Noel.
There has also been previous interest reported via New York in Saddiq Bey. At the time, the reasonable speculation was perhaps Detroit was interested in a future Detroit first New York now has the rights due, which dates back to the Isaiah Stewart draft pick and several subsequent trades. It would have likely meant Detroit took back Cam Reddish, who is now out of New York.
Combine that previous interest in Bey, New York’s future draft picks, the Knicks’ desire to keep building, and Detroit’s desire for a quality young player in return for Bogdanovic.
What if you built a deal around Bojan Bogdanovic, Saddiq Bey and something worthy of the Knicks’ rotation (a Bagley or Noel type), and you agreed to take back the contract of moth-balled guard Evan Fournier, forward RJ Barrett, and Detroit’s future pick back, which would allow them additional trade flexibility going forward.
Unlikely, yeah, but just crazy enough to at least provide some distraction from this awful Pistons season. It also wouldn’t block any of Detroit’s young core, and wouldn’t create any difficult rotation juggling assuming Detroit lands a top-7 pick (at worst).
Sure, he more reasonable speculation would just be Bogdanovic for future picks and Derrick Rose, who you can then reroute to the allegedly interested Bucks. Ahem, pardon me. ....
Back to semi-reality, the Bucks’ interest in Bogdanovic seems like a head-scratcher at first blush. They don’t have attractive picks to offer and few young players that would seem to interest Detroit. “It feels like a third team would have to get involved for Detroit to get the type of return it would need to move its coveted trade chips before the deadline,” per Edwards’ latest report.
Consolidation Trade Possible?
He also speculates that Detroit could look to forfeit some of its oversized offseason cap space — currently sitting at around $40 million — and instead trade off Cory Joseph, Hamidou Diallo and/or Nerlens Noel to a team looking for future cap relief for a better player or players on longer-term deals.
Here is my invitation to all the capologists and die-hard trade machine sickos to start building potential trades involving the three aforementioned teams and Bogdanovic, Burks or Bey.
A friendly reminder — the Knicks aren’t giving up Quentin Grimes, the Lakers have nothing to offer but their pick, and the Bucks have encumbered first-round picks from now until 2028 (I think?). They are sending their 2023 first to Houston, rights to swap with New Orleans in 2024, and 2026, their 2025 going to either New Orleans or New York, and the 2027 going to the Pelicans.