Moses Kingsley

Central Notes: Pistons, Pacers, Bucks, Workouts

After a disappointing 2016/17 season, the Pistons will be looking this offseason for ways to improve the team’s outlook for next year. However, as Vince Ellis of The Detroit Free Press details, Andre Drummond doesn’t believe a roster overhaul is necessary.

“I don’t think we need to do any changes,” the Pistons center told reporters earlier this week. “We had a lot of bumps in the road last season with different things going on, and it took everybody out of sync. … With this summer coming up, we have to do a better job staying connected — the more stuff we do together, the better our camaraderie will be.”

Even if the Pistons were interested in making major changes to their roster, they would be tricky to pull off. Detroit has nearly $95MM in guaranteed salary on its books for 2017/18 without counting Aron Baynes‘ $6.5MM player option or Kentavious Caldwell-Pope‘s $9.2MM cap hold, so the team won’t have cap room to work with.

Here’s more from around the Central division:

Arkansas F/C Moses Kingsley Withdraws From Draft

Arkansas junior big man Moses Kingsley has pulled out of this year’s draft, the school announced. That’s in spite of a surge from 123rd to 76th in Chad Ford’s ESPN Insider prospect rankings between the time he declared a month ago and today. Still, the news isn’t entirely surprising, since his name wasn’t on the list of invitees to this week’s NBA combine that the league released last week. The 6’9″ 21-year-old remains outside the top 100 in Jonathan Givony’s DraftExpress ratings.

It’s unclear whether Kingsley worked out for any NBA teams, as he was allowed to do while in the draft pool. He had until May 25th to pull out and retain his college eligibility, but it appears he’s decided to put an early end to his predraft process.

A highly touted prospect coming out of high school, Kingsley will look to build on this season’s breakout performance. He put up 15.9 points and 9.3 rebounds in 29.5 minutes per game after playing just 11.1 minutes per contest his freshman and sophomore years, in spite of having been 47th in the 2013 Recruiting Services Consensus Index, two spots ahead of Zach LaVine.

Arkansas F/C Moses Kingsley To Test Draft Waters

Arkansas junior forward/center Moses Kingsley will enter the draft but won’t hire an agent, the school announced. The 6’9″ 21-year-old will likely have to impress in predraft workouts and, if invited, the NBA combine, if he’s to end up getting drafted in June, since he’s just 123rd in Chad Ford’s rankings. Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress doesn’t give players an overall ranking beyond the top 100, but he does list Kingsley as the 27th-best junior. Kingsley can retain his college eligibility if he withdraws by May 25th and doesn’t hire an agent.

He entered college in 2013 at No. 47 in the Recruiting Services Consensus Index, two spots below Christian Wood, who re-signed with the Sixers last week, and two spots above Zach LaVine, whose stock surged before he became the 13th pick in the 2014 draft. Kingsley didn’t have any such fast rise, averaging just 11.1 minutes per game his first two years in college before becoming a starter this season.

His performance proved worth the wait, as he finished second in the SEC with 2.4 blocks per game and third with 9.3 rebounds per outing. Ford calls him an excellent defender, and Kingsley also averaged 15.9 points, eclipsing 20 points eight times. His offensive skill has been a question mark, according to Ford, so the big man will seemingly have to prove to NBA types that his production can translate to the next level.

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