The Pistons were the victims of the new lottery odds. Despite finishing with the league’s worst record (17-65), the Pistons fell all the way down to fifth in a year a potential franchise altering player or two were available. We’d be talking about this team in a different light had they managed to land Victor Wembanyama or Scoot Henderson to play alongside Cade Cunningham. Instead, this team did very little to change both their short term and long term outlook.
Detroit Pistons (Over/Under 28.5 Wins)
Key Additions- Ausar Thompson, Joe Harris
Key Losses- Saddiq Bey
The 2023 NBA Draft may be the ultimate sliding doors moment for the Pistons. Wembanyama was a lock to go first but a consolation prize of Scoot Henderson would have given them their backcourt of the future. Looking at this roster, only Jaden Ivey and Cade look like true building blocks. Isaiah Stewart is solid. Jalen Duren and rookie Ausar Thompson are young but their ceiling is unknown. Killian Hayes is as close to awful as a NBA player can reasonably get. Bojan Bogdanovic and Joe Harris have no place on this roster. The Pistons brass thought they were a vet or two away from competing for a play-in spot but quickly realized that couldn’t be further from the truth. In a vacuum, both players have some value on the market. Harris is expiring while next year’s salary for Bogdanovic is not fully guaranteed.
They also have another $28 million worth of expiring contracts in James Wiseman, Killian Hayes, Alec Burks, and Monte Morris. They could opt to be players in free agency or use those contracts to take on bad deals in exchange for draft capital. Either way, expect the Pistons roster to look a whole lot different at the end of the season. Unless they are playing the Mavericks, I have no intention of watching a single minute of Detroit Piston basketball this season. I love Cade but I’ll catch his and Jaden Ivey’s highlights online. This is an under all the way and I expect the Pistons will be in contention for a top-5 pick at season’s end.
PREDICTION - Under 28.5 Wins