Pistons Confirm Fontecchio Underwent Surgery On Toe

Pistons forward Simone Fontecchio, who will be a restricted free agent this summer, recently underwent surgery to address the left big toe injury that ended his season early, the club announced today in a press release (Twitter link). According to the team, Fontecchio is expected to make a full recovery this offseason and will be ready for training camp in the fall.

Fontecchio himself revealed on Instagram a few days ago that he’d undergone surgery that will sideline him for Italy’s Olympic qualifying tournament this summer, but he didn’t offer any specific details about the procedure or his recovery timeline.

The 28-year-old played professionally in Europe from 2012-22 before signing with the Jazz two summers ago. He spent a season-and-a-half in Utah, then was traded to Detroit at this year’s trade deadline. In 66 total games (43 starts) for the Jazz and Pistons in 2023/24, the Italian wing averaged 10.5 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 1.5 assists in 24.9 minutes per game, with a strong shooting line of .460/.401/.818.

Fontecchio signed a relatively modest two-year, $6.25MM contract when he first made the move to the NBA in 2022, but he increased the value of his qualifying offer to $5.2MM by meeting the starter criteria this past season and appears to have positioned himself for a salary worth well above that on his next contract.

James L. Edwards of The Athletic predicted last month that Fontecchio’s next deal could be worth between $14-17MM annually due to his three-and-D skill set, citing contracts signed by Luke Kennard (four years, $56MM) and Bogdan Bogdanovic (four years, $68MM) as points of comparison.

While a rival suitor could put pressure on the Pistons by signing Fontecchio to a lucrative offer sheet, Detroit has a ton of cap flexibility and would be able to match any offer. Fontecchio said in an Instagram post last week that he’s looking forward to a future with the Pistons.

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