Central Notes: Pacers, Bucks, Pistons

January 19 at 7:26pm CST By Eddie Scarito

The Pistons have some tough choices to make as the February trade deadline approaches, writes Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News.  Even though Detroit has Brandon Jennings, he’s not necessarily viewed as a long-term option at point guard and they could theoretically make a step-up at the position like they did when they swapped Brandon Knight for Jennings.  More out of the Central Division..

  • The Pacers currently have the best record in the NBA at 32-7, but there are still a number of questions about the team, writes, Joel Brigham of Basketball Insiders.com. Brigham thinks that Danny Granger is more likely to stay with the team through the end of the season than be traded. In addition to wanting to see what a healthy Granger can provide, the team will need the cap space his expiring deal will provide in order to try and resign Lance Stephenson.
  • The Pacers want to keep Stephenson beyond this season, but the potential luxury tax hit will be a sticking point, Brigham writes. The Pacers are afraid that his play this season may take Stephenson out of their price range this summer. The team figures to have $8MM-$9MM available to offer him this offseason, without sending them into luxury tax territory. There’s a chance that Stephenson might garner an offer in the $11MM-$12MM range. If that happens, the Pacers will have a difficult decision to make.
  • The Pacers should consider taking a chance on Andrew Bynum, Brigham argues. Not only to keep him from potentially joining the Heat, but also, if he could find the form that made him an all-star, he would be a major asset for a team contending for a title.
  • Gary Neal didn’t expect the Bucks to be struggling this much when he signed in the offseason, writes Charles F. Gardner of the Journal Sentinal. Neal stated, “I didn’t know the team would struggle in a manner of being 7-33 (so far 7-32) and I would be getting DNPs. I’m healthy. My family is healthy. It is what it is.

Zach Links contributed to this post.

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