1:35pm: Pistons head coach Stan Van Gundy told reporters this afternoon that surgery isn’t likely for Jackson, but the point guard could be out for six to eight weeks (Twitter links via Rod Beard of The Detroit News). While Detroit will explore its options at the point, Van Gundy said he’s comfortable starting Smith, so any move the team makes would likely be a minor one to add short-term depth.
10:13am: The Pistons fear that Reggie Jackson may miss “extended time” to start the regular season, according to ESPN.com’s Marc Stein, who reports (via Twitter) that the team will explore the point guard market for possible alternatives.
Jackson was limited during training camp and was held out of practice on Tuesday this week, as he deals with a left knee issue. As Stein adds in a second tweet, Jackson told local reporters yesterday that he has been battling left knee tendinitis for years.
While it’s not yet clear how much time Jackson will miss, it makes sense that the team would keep an eye out for possible fill-ins. Internally, Detroit would turn to Ish Smith next, with Lorenzo Brown or Trey Freeman as options further down on the depth chart, as the team’s depth chart at RosterResource.com shows.
Stein’s report doesn’t make it 100% clear whether the Pistons would target a player on the free agent market or explore potential trades, but if they look to sign a player, their options are somewhat limited. Norris Cole has committed to play in China, while Toney Douglas signed with the Cavaliers this week, leaving Mario Chalmers, Kirk Hinrich, Kendall Marshall, Andre Miller, and Steve Blake among the only veteran options in free agency.
Of course, with teams set to cut their rosters down from 20 players to 15 for the regular season, more veterans could become available in the coming weeks. However, if the Pistons were to wait until the start of the season to add a point guard, that player wouldn’t have an opportunity to learn the system and mesh with his new teammates at all during the preseason.