Kentavious Caldwell-Pope may think twice before committing to a contract extension with the Pistons, according to David Mayo of MLive. The third-year shooting guard will be eligible for an extension this offseason, but he may try to increase his value with another productive season and then take his chances as a restricted free agent next summer. “I think what’s important is we’ll have to have discussions and see what’s important to Kentavious and have a sense of where they’re at with the whole thing,” said GM Jeff Bower. “It’s something that doesn’t have to take place. But what does have to take place is an understanding of what’s important, what time frames are important, how he understands his place and role here.” Caldwell-Pope started all 76 games he played this season, averaging 14.3 points per night.
There’s more on the Central Division:
- Replacing Ersan Ilyasova with Tobias Harris in a February trade helped the Pistons reach the playoffs, Mayo writes in a separate piece. Ilyasova tended to slow down the offense, while Harris displayed a willingness to pass, shoot, drive, rebound and do anything the team needed from him. Detroit’s offensive rating improved nearly three points per 100 possessions after Harris arrived. Mayo adds that the Pistons will emphasize shooting as they search the free agent market for backups at the point guard and power forward positions.
- Tyronn Lue hasn’t signed a new contract since taking over as the Cavaliers‘ head coach in January, but he’s not interested in any of the open positions around the league, relays Dave McMenamin of ESPN. Lue was the league’s highest-paid assistant, with a four-year deal he signed in 2014 worth $6.5MM. After replacing David Blatt, Lue reached a verbal agreement worth $3MM prorated for his time as head coach this season and another $3MM for next year, along with a team option for 2017/18 at $3.5MM with a buyout. An unidentified source told ESPN the Cavs will live up to the offer and plan to finalize the deal with Lue this summer.
- Pacers coach Frank Vogel is used to the level of criticism he received after the Game 5 loss to Toronto, which included calls for his firing on social media, writes Gregg Doyel of The Indianapolis Star. “I don’t take it personally,” Vogel said after the Indiana blew out the Raptors in Game 6. “I hear everything. I don’t take anything personal. The passion the fans have? It isn’t as strong as mine.”