Pistons Notes: DSJ, Knox, Grant, Rookies

Instead of heading to the G League, Dennis Smith Jr. will get a chance to revive his career in Detroit, writes James L. Edwards of The Athletic. Smith and a second-round pick were the price the Knicks paid to acquire long-time Tom Thibodeau favorite Derrick Rose. The move is another step in the rebuilding process for Detroit, which already owns the league’s worst record at 5-18.

It’s the second trade in 24 months for Smith, who had two disappointing seasons in New York after being acquired in the Kristaps Porzingis deal. He fell far out of the rotation after Thibodeau took over and got into just three games this season. He’s far more likely to get playing time with the Pistons, especially with Killian Hayes recovering from a torn labrum in his right hip. Detroit saved nearly $2MM in the deal and will get a few months to evaluate Smith before deciding whether to extend a $7MM+ qualifying offer when his rookie deal expires after this season.

A bigger prize for Detroit is the draft pick, which originally belonged to the Hornets, Edwards states. The Pistons also own the Raptors’ second-round choice, along with their own first-rounder, which currently has the best odds of being No. 1 overall. The team is positioned to add more young talent in a draft class that is considered to be one of the best in years.

There’s more this morning from Detroit:

  • The Pistons were initially asking for Kevin Knox instead of Smith, according to Marc Berman of The New York Post, who speculates that the Knicks could be saving Knox for another trade.
  • Pistons coach Dwane Casey believes free agent addition Jerami Grant should be an All-Star selection (video link from The Detroit News). Grant has stepped up his game since signing with Detroit, averaging 24.0 PPG, double what he scored last year in Denver. “I hope the true basketball fan sees what he’s doing, the all-around game, not just the scorer,” Casey said.
  • Edwards and Sam Vecenie of The Athletic examine the progress of the Pistons’ rookies through the first third of the season. Hayes was still adjusting to the NBA when he suffered the injury, Saddiq Bey has been a valuable shooter but is otherwise limited offensively, and Isaiah Stewart has been impressive with his energy and competitiveness.
newest oldest

15 thoughts on “Pistons Notes: DSJ, Knox, Grant, Rookies

  1. Wade Herbers

    Detroit cementing itself for best odds at next years #1 pick. They add a pick , get to review Smith and help tank for the #1 pick………too bad the TWolves ain’t paying attention prolly.

  2. formerlyz

    I think Dennis Smith could theoretically have a legit shot at figuring some things out with what is around him in Detroit, assuming Dwayne Casey doesnt further mess them up. Bey should be a starter, as I have been saying since before the season. Stewart/Plumlee/Okafor in certain matchups off the bench.

    • davidkaner

      Casey was instrumental in helping Christian Woods develop which translated into a huge FA contract. Are just a Casey hater or don’t really understand basketball?

      • formerlyz

        Dwayne Casey has shown exactly why Toronto fired him. He cant put together a rotation, and it hurts certain important players on their roster, as well as takes away what would have been important development time for young guys…

        Wood is relatively similar to what he has been. It’s just a matter of actual opportunity. He has shown capability in the past. That doesmt have anything to do with Dwayne Casey, other than the fact he got playing time when certain guys were moved or out injured…

        I could elaborate further, with things I’ve previously said, but I dont think it should be necessary

  3. GabeOfThrones

    Jerami Grant was criminally underused in Denver. If he had played more of the minutes that went to Millsap I think they could have beaten the Lakers. He was the best defender on both Lebron and AD, and an efficient offensive player. Denver looks a lot worse this year, and I think that’s a big reason why.

  4. I hope Detriot gives DSJ some real minutes. That should help keep Detriot’s 2nd rounder at the top of the round.

  5. Good trade for Detroit. Can give DSJ another look on a different team. DSJ is ultra athletic but obviously two other teams didn’t value him.

  6. KnickerbockerAl

    Smith is 23. His first yr in NY 2018-19 (21 gms). He avg 28.6 mins. Did not shoot well. Had 14.7 pts a gm. and 5.4 ast. Considering it was his 2nd yr, it shows promise. Then NY came into play. 3 coaches, city turning on him. Inconsistent mins and play. Sulking and injuries, even ghost injuries. Plenty of good athletes have failed NY because of outside influences. Well he’s getting his shot now. So he better be ready. By now his shooting could be much better. But he decided to sit and sulk. Knicks situation was nuts during his time there. It don’t mean he couldn’t improve his skills. Time to grow up and take control. I think Detroit will be good for him. Wish him luck

    • davidkaner

      Detroit is where you want to be if you are looking to get untracked & develop. He’s athletic as hell so give him minutes and see what he does best. Could be another Christian Wood reclamation project.

      • Agreed. Can’t understand how the Rockets were able to sign Wood for $41 million for three years. Wood is only twenty five years old and a tremendous player. The contract is a steal for the Rockets. Every team in the league should have been jumping on that situation. Could Detroit have resigned Wood for that contract? If Wood was an unrestricted FA then Wood wasn’t restricted in any way to sign with whomever he wants to sign with.

        The DSJ DRose trade is a good trade for Detroit.

  7. KnickerbockerAl

    Always liked Grant. He was a good teammate and team player. Butler was similar in that way. He made his impact as D and team player first. Then grew to be a great 2way player. With Pistons Grant has shown he can be a top player on a team. Grant was a great find. He’s having a career yr. Pistons should continue the youth movement. Move Griffin Hm to OKC. This draft is loaded. And they had best draft of any team last yr. Hayes, Bey, Stewart all are solid players. Smith even becomes a backup PG. They will have added another young piece.

Leave a Reply