NBA trade rumors: Why are the rebuilding Pistons signaling they want to keep Bojan Bogdanovic round?

Bojan Bogdanovic turns 34 years previous in April, and he is averaging a career-high 21.5 factors on a career-high 63.4 % true taking pictures for a younger group that has the second-worst document in the league. It isn’t exhausting to work out why he’s a candidate to be moved earlier than the Feb. 9 trade deadline.

The 12-37 Detroit Pistons, nevertheless, proceed to broadcast that they are not essentially going to trade Bogdanovic. In different phrases, suitors should not waste time lowballing them.

The newest report on this topic comes from James Edwards III of The Athletic:

Per league sources, as of late January, the Pistons, who’ve aspirations of turning a nook subsequent season, would want important worth in return to take into account shifting Bogdanovic inside the subsequent two weeks, with the minimal place to begin being an unprotected first-round choose . Detroit values ​​Bogdanovic extremely and does not want to transfer him until an awesome provide makes an excessive amount of sense.

This state of affairs is comparable to the one which the Pistons have been in with Jerami Grant earlier than final season’s trade deadline. They ended up holding Grant for the remainder of the season, then sending him to the Portland Trail Blazers for a top-four-protected 2025 Milwaukee Bucks first-round choose and two seconds. But there are variations:

  • Bogdanovic is 5 years older than Grant, so buying him is extra of a short-term play.
  • Any group buying and selling for Grant wanted to be ready to provide him a profitable contract extension or threat dropping him in free company at the finish of the 2022-23 season. Bogdanovic, on the different hand, signed a two-year, $39 million extension in late October, 5 weeks after Detroit acquired him from the Utah Jazz. This is a team-friendly deal, notably as a result of solely $2 million of his $19 million 2024-25 wage is assured. If he is nonetheless this productive at the finish of subsequent season, his group can keep him round at an inexpensive worth; if he declines, he may be waived for a small penalty.
  • The Pistons are one other yr into their rebuild, so their priorities could possibly be totally different now.

That final level is the most attention-grabbing one. If Detroit has “aspirations of turning a nook subsequent season,” how a lot stress will there be on the entrance workplace and training employees? How a lot will the outcomes of the draft lottery have to do with that? Cade Cunningham’s season-ending shin harm has pressured the Pistons to be extra affected person than they deliberate to be, but when there is a playoff (or play-in) mandate in 2023-24, then Troy Weaver’s entrance workplace should method the Bogdanovic state of affairs — and this trade deadline, and 2023 free company — in another way than if there is not one.

This isn’t to say that Detroit ought to be seen as a win-now group. It simply should not be seen as a lose-now group. Bogdanovic isn’t on Detroit’s timeline, actually, however he is a 6-foot-7 veteran who can rating in a wide range of methods, house the flooring and defend competently. For a franchise attempting to take a step ahead and set up some construction, this has worth.

Bogdanovic won’t, nevertheless, be price fairly as a lot to the Pistons as he’s to one other group. If they are provided a high-value first-round choose in change for him, they might doubtlessly use that choose in a trade a couple of months later to improve the roster. Ideally, they’d flip it into somebody type of like Bogdanovic, solely youthful.

Last week, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that the Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers, Milwaukee Bucks, New Orleans Pelicans and Toronto Raptors have all expressed curiosity in Bogdanovic. On Monday, The Athletic’s Jovan Buha reported that the Lakers are keen to half with solely a lottery-protected first-rounder however might change their stance nearer to the deadline.

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