Pistons Acquire Tobias Harris

Kim Klement / USA TODAY Sports Images

Kim Klement / USA TODAY Sports Images

2:58pm: The Pistons have acquired Tobias Harris from the Magic for Brandon Jennings and Ersan Ilyasova, the teams have formally announced. ESPN’s Chris Broussard first reported it was a done deal shortly after Michael Scotto of SheridanHoops reported the sides were in talks (Twitter links), while Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports, USA Today’s Sam Amick and Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel added detail (All Twitter links).

“We are pleased to welcome Tobias Harris to our organization,” Pistons GM Jeff Bower said in Detroit’s release. “Tobias adds good versatility as a ball-handler and scorer who can play both forward positions.  He also has good experience for a young player and will fit well with the young core we have assembled on our roster.  We appreciate the contributions made by Brandon and Ersan to our organization and wish them well moving forward.” 

The deal represents a nearly even exchange of salaries for this season, with Harris’ $16MM going to the Pistons and $16,244,497 headed to Orlando, but a long-term cost savings for the Magic, since Jennings is on an expiring deal and Ilyasova is guaranteed only $400K for next season. Harris signed a four-year, $64MM deal this past summer.

Detroit appeared to be one of the leading contenders for Harris as free agency got underway in the offseason, but the team hadn’t emerged as a trade suitor this year until today. Marc Stein of ESPN.com reported last week that the Magic were open to trading the 23-year-old Harris, cautioning that they weren’t shopping him. However, a serious discussion took place recently between the Magic and Clippers involving Harris, Blake Griffin and other players, according to Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders. The Magic had been on the lookout for veterans, according to Stein, and Jennings, who’s 26, and Ilyasova, 28, ostensibly fit that bill.

“Brandon and Ersan are two veterans that will help balance our roster and provide valuable experience to our team,” Magic GM Rob Hennigan said as part of his team’s statement. “Both players bring scoring, competitiveness and added depth to our roster.  We want to thank Tobias for his contributions, both on and off the court.”

Power forward has been the unsettled spot for the Pistons, who were high on Ilyasova but saw him instead as a backup, as ESPN’s Zach Lowe reported as he identified the team’s interest in Ryan Anderson. The acquisition of Harris would presumably take the Pistons out of the running for other power forwards the team has been linked to, including Markieff Morris and Al Horford, though Detroit will still have significant cap flexibility for next summer, when only about $64MM in guaranteed salaries will be on the books against a cap that many around the league reportedly believe will surge to $95MM.

The Magic meanwhile reduce their guaranteed salary commitments to only about $44MM for next season, giving them plenty of spending power. They had an open roster spot before the trade, so they didn’t have to offload anyone to make the two-for-one exchange.

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26 Comments on "Pistons Acquire Tobias Harris"

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aarongill
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aarongill
7 months 9 days ago

Let the deadline start of with a BANG! Let’s keep it going gms. Who’s playing SF now for the magic?

formerlyz
Member
formerlyz
7 months 9 days ago

I’d assume it would be Gordon, Hezonja, Formier, or Oladipo at different points

pirates20
Guest
pirates20
7 months 9 days ago

Considering he hasn’t been starting for Orlando in over 2 weeks I’d say you’ll continue to see Aaron Gordon get in on the mix. Good trade

formerlyz
Member
formerlyz
7 months 9 days ago

This confuses me from Orlando’s perspective. It gives them cap space, and helps them get more minutes for certain guys, but I don’t get why this made sense to do now. Like the deal a lot for Detroit. They add more versatility, and shooting, and youth to their core. Should be interesting to see if this leads to more moves from Orlando, and how this effects Detroit in their playoff run

m
Member
m
7 months 9 days ago

they’re about to unleash Aaron Gordon

AC
Member
AC
7 months 9 days ago

it is confusing, but maybe Orlando has other moves going on. Maybe Oladipo or Fournier are gone too

formerlyz
Member
formerlyz
7 months 9 days ago

That’s what I was thinking

frankm
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frankm
7 months 9 days ago

This one is a real head scratcher

phillyphan
Member
phillyphan
7 months 9 days ago

Not sure how Jennings is any more of a fit in Orlando than he was in Detriot with Elfrid Payton there. And correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t Ilyasova a starter on the Pistons? Unless there are related moves coming I don’t understand this trade…

jeremy
Member
jeremy
7 months 9 days ago

Well magic think they need a PG. Plus it only for a short term unless they resign him. Plus I don’t follow the magic but aren’t their PG more combo guards

Adam
Member
Adam
7 months 9 days ago
It’s not perfect for either, but I can see the thinking for Detroit. They were looking to get another secondary offensive hub, and given that Harris is a bit of a combo forward (similar with their other sort-of-combo-forward wings in Morris and Stanley Johnson), I see them playing a lot of 4-out. In all, I like this for them. I’m confused with the move for Orlando, though. I see some people thinking this means more minutes for Gordon (and it might) but I see him as more of a 4 than a 3 (it might mean more minutes for Hezonja,… Read more »
Anonymous
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Anonymous
7 months 9 days ago

Magic need veterans and cj hasn’t played

Matt
Member
Matt
7 months 9 days ago

SVG is building his Orlando scheme with the Pistons, it’s obvious.

Magic need scoring from a PG spot, as Elfrid gives us very little. AG will be playing the 4, but can also play the 3, especially with a Frye move. This also opens up 16M more in cap for next offseason, so likely we aren’t done yet this year to free up money for a big name in the offseason.

jeremy
Member
jeremy
7 months 9 days ago

Reason it a good trade for both. For magic save them money let other get playing time and give them a true PG. For the piston they get the SF they been needing for a while. Even though they do have the talented SF they draft

JT19
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JT19
7 months 9 days ago

I would argue that Payton is the more “true ” PG than Jennings. Jennings is more of a combo guard whose size forces him to play the point.

phillyphan
Member
phillyphan
7 months 9 days ago

Not sure how Jennings is a better fit in Orlando than he was in Detriot. And correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t Ilyasova a starter for the Pistons? Unless related moves are on the way, this trade confuses me…

bdpecore
Member
bdpecore
7 months 9 days ago

My guess is the Dipo for Teague deal is now dead since they just acquired Jennings.

AC
Member
AC
7 months 9 days ago

Oladipo is definitely gone too, even with Jennings there. Otherwise the magic now have a HUGE logjam in the backcourt. And don’t forget that Orlando still has C.J. Watson

Ryan Bru
Member
Ryan Bru
7 months 9 days ago

and Shabazz napier

Matt
Member
Matt
7 months 9 days ago

One of Napier/Payton/Watson is going. Also Fournier may be gone instead of Oladipo, since Oladipo isn’t a RFA. I could see us moving Frye/Fournier/Napier for somebody, not sure who though.

Dana Gauruder
Admin
7 months 9 days ago

This should not come as a surprise. Harris, Carroll and D. Green were the players they targeted in free agency last season. Morris has proved more valuable than Ilyasova this season, and with the development of S. Johnson, Harris should be a good fit.

Starship Pegasus
Member
Starship Pegasus
7 months 9 days ago

Dang, I guess there’s somebody in FA that the Magic REALLY want. Otherwise this kind of return for Harris makes little sense longterm

jakesaub
Member
jakesaub
7 months 9 days ago

Former Bucks everywhere

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