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Joe Dumars: Pistons don’t plan to make a trade that adds salary before summer

David Mayo of MLive:

The NBA trade deadline is still weeks away but for all the fans plotting along with Dumars in how to improve the Pistons by Feb. 21, the president of basketball operations made clear that any deal must take one overarching theme into account: It must preserve the team’s financial freedom going into next summer’s free-agency period.

"We like the flexibility that we have going forward," Dumars said. "Our plan is not to give up that flexibility going forward. So anything that we may or may not do, we don’t intend to give up that flexibility that we do have going into the summer."

I don’t understand why the Pistons would take trades that add salary obligations off the table – especially when they’ve indicated they’re more likely to add salary via trade than free agency. Just speculating, but it’s sounding more and more like the Pistons have a very specific deal in mind for the offseason.

39 Comments

  • Jan 3, 20132:15 pm
    by Rich

    Reply

    Feb 21, 2008 – that’s the last time Joe Dumars made a trade that wasn’t a straight salary dump.
    And that trade was Primo Brezec for Juan Dixon.

  • Jan 3, 20132:18 pm
    by Birdman84

    Reply

    Oh good. So Dumars won’t trade the expiring contracts to maintain flexibility, then he’ll wind up overpaying in free agency since the cap space should be used.

  • Jan 3, 20132:29 pm
    by Reaction

    Reply

    I would add salary if it means us gaining future 1st rounders from other decently crappy teams… but that’s just my take since I want the team to go toward a younger build.

  • Jan 3, 20132:50 pm
    by tarsier

    Reply

    Who would he have in mind? I highly doubt he’ll rope in CP3 or D12.

  • Jan 3, 20132:53 pm
    by Jodi Jezz

    Reply

    I guarantee we’re trying to get Rudy Gay!..

    • Jan 3, 20133:14 pm
      by I HATE FRANK

      Reply

      or josh smith

    • Jan 3, 20133:19 pm
      by Reaction

      Reply

      and I guarantee no big name player will sign in Detroit with the conditions/roster we have… He still doesn’t realize that. Players want championships almost as much as money.

      • Jan 3, 20133:34 pm
        by Crispus

        Reply

        Players of a certain character want greatness (championships) but I’d assert that many many skilled players are happy to just take a big check. 

      • Jan 3, 20133:36 pm
        by Crispus

        Reply

        I would use James Harden as a recent example. There’s no way he knew Houston would be this good, he just knew he’d get more money and more playing time if he didn’t resign with OKC.

        • Jan 3, 20133:38 pm
          by Reaction

          Reply

          He was traded… He didn’t even know of the trade until it happened. That was why it was such a big deal and such a huge shock to Durant, Westbrook, etc. 

        • Jan 3, 20134:27 pm
          by Crispus

          Reply

          I know, but he could have signed a relatively meager extension with OKC – the 2nd best team in the league and championship contender – if he really wanted to. However, Harden knew he would be limiting his earning potential and playing time by doing so, so he signed nothing and let the trade winds blow.

        • Jan 3, 20137:23 pm
          by Chris H

          Reply

          It’s worth noting that sometimes greatness isn’t just Championships.  Sometimes it’s just opportunity to play the game that the player plays best, which he wasn’t getting in OKC.  Look at the trade that got billups to detroit.  If you read up on Billups he was enjoying his time in MN, btu he was the backup guard, and he wasn’t going to start.  KG was an all-star and the team had 50 wins.  Billups wasn’t on a bad team, and he wasn’t getting traded to a team it was sure was going to win a championship in the 2003 season (though they were probably predicted to get 50 wins again).  Billups wanted to stay in MN, but salary and playing time lead him to look elsewhere.

          • Jan 3, 20138:27 pm
            by Josh B

            Chauncey wasn’t traded here, he signed as a free agent, btw

      • Jan 3, 20134:21 pm
        by tarsier

        Reply

        Players of a certain caliber only need a modicum of talent around them to be on a contender.

        • Jan 3, 20137:40 pm
          by Venice

          Reply

          In todays game ?where superstars try to team up than compete with each other ?I don’t think so.

          • Jan 4, 20139:48 am
            by tarsier

            Yes, in today’s game. Please note Dwight Magic, the LeBron Cavs, and the Dirk Mavs. All contenders for at least a couple years.

          • Jan 4, 201310:04 am
            by Daye and Knight (Team Redemption)

            @Tariser

            Outside of the Mavs, LeBron is on a video game team (Heat) and so is Howard so maybe back then you didn’t need to have a super star team but today you definitely do until a team proves me otherwise 

    • Jan 3, 20134:20 pm
      by tarsier

      Reply

      Rudy Gay isn’t gonna be a FA, is he? I coulda sworn he signed his max deal three years ago.

      • Jan 3, 20136:30 pm
        by Jodi Jezz

        Reply

        @Tarsier: That’s why I said we could trade for him and swallow his contract…We could trade our pick, Prince, and Singler during the draft…

        • Jan 3, 201310:41 pm
          by tarsier

          Reply

          That’s the opposite of what the post is saying, which is that the Pistons won’t be adding salary via trade but rather waiting to do so via free agency.

        • Jan 3, 201310:42 pm
          by tarsier

          Reply

          I mean Dumars could be lying, but what’s the point? It’s not like other teams will make him better offers because of such an announcement.

    • Jan 4, 201312:25 pm
      by jamesjones_det

      Reply

      I really like RG but I don’t think he’s going to be worth the money he is going to command in the off season.
       
      Max deals should = instant championship contender.  Gay doesn’t do that.

  • Jan 3, 20133:38 pm
    by Crispus

    Reply

    I wish Dumars wasn’t setting constraints already. I know he is anxious to absolve himself for his infamously catastrophic free agent signings, but one should keep their options open. 

  • Jan 3, 20134:48 pm
    by Keith

    Reply

    I don’t have much problem with Joe saying that he wants to preserve flexibility. We aren’t going to have much use for it, but it’s better to have and not need than need and not have. As for not getting any big names, that’s probably true. But check out the landscape of teams with cap space (or that can create cap space by letting their free agents go). Other than perhaps Houston, there simply won’t be any great rosters out there looking to add just one more piece. And honestly, Monroe-Drummond aren’t a bad foundation for a pick and roll wing player to join.
     
    If I was Joe, I’d be selling Jose Calderon on the chance to run with a great PnR partner (Drummond), actually have shooters (Knight), and have a strong interior passer getting him open shots (Monroe). He’ll also be 32 next year, so he could be cheap and only require a 2 year contract. With Calderon’s age, Knight could still be the PG of the future, but play early as the SG of the present. This also keeps flexibility with our drafting strategy. Having two elite shooters on the floor (Calderon-Knight) would also open up the paint more for Monroe to work and Drummond to roll. Ideally we’d find a D and 3 SF, but easier said than done.

  • Jan 3, 20135:31 pm
    by bugsygod

    Reply

    Well they hired a capoligist last year from the NBA front office, ken cantella i believe.  So im sure they look around the nba and know every rosters cap situation going forward and who are going to be “regular” tax payers and teams who with their current rosters will be paying the future double tax payments.  Those are usually the elite teams in the league who may be paying multiple guys max or close to max money.  Those are the teams who will be shedding salary to avoid the big tax.  I am ok waiting until the summer to spend, BUT if a good young player can be had who can  be a core piece going forward i think Dumars would make that deal and add the salary. 
    Oj mayo, tyreke evans, monta ellis are three shooting guards who will be free agents this summer, evans is restricted.  So i would say we as fans need to look at those teams for trades, along with memphis w/ rudy gay, denver has some young wings, houston w/ wings, granger in indy, etc.   

  • Jan 3, 20136:20 pm
    by Jinzzy

    Reply

    Joe should just package Maxiell and Jonas for Derrick Williams ,because no one wants to come to Detroit plus we would have to overpay for average players to bring them here

    • Jan 3, 20137:28 pm
      by Chris H

      Reply

      Explain to me why anyone would make that deal?  Well take that back David Khan does make some odd trades, but still why?

      • Jan 4, 20131:29 pm
        by jamesjones_det

        Reply

        I’m sure that trade works in NBA 2k13, cus you know, that’s just like real life.
         

  • Jan 3, 20136:43 pm
    by Otis

    Reply

    This is completely insane and confirms my fear that the front office has no plan whatsoever. If you think they have something “specific” planned, I’d love to hear what it is. A specific free agent target who would never sign here?? I was very troubled when I read this earlier today.

    Joe’s just flat out said they are 100% committed to having financial flexibility this summer, as if “financial flexibility” itself is the goal. The goddamn team isn’t for sale, so how can that make sense?? Financial flexibility is a means to an end, but apparently that’s what we’re settling for. Doesn’t matter who becomes available?? This is nuts. I hate this.

    Langlois just made a stink in the mailbag about all the trade flexibility Joe has, and like the article said he already confirmed that free agency isn’t likely going to be the way to add talent, so WTF? Handcuff yourself with a mandate to go into the summer with X number of dollars in cap space, and for what?? GOD this is really bothersome.  

  • Jan 3, 20137:23 pm
    by frankie d

    Reply

    my fear is that joe still is living in the nba from a decade ago.
    instead of using his cap space smartly – acting as a facilitator for teams that need a 3rd party to do a trade – i think he’s probably looking to sign a free agent.  
    that is usually a very bad move, if you’re looking to sign one of the top guys.  they will be badly overpaid and usually a team like detroit will only get the second tier guys.  
    hopefully, he’s learned from his mistakes and will avoid the expensive big names, maybe sign an underappreciated mid-level type player and keep lots of space open so that he can pick up other good, cheap, productive young players that other teams have to move in order to do a trade. 

    • Jan 3, 20137:43 pm
      by bugsygod

      Reply

      Um, i think thats what the article just said.
       

  • Jan 4, 20137:16 am
    by DG

    Reply

    The Pistons don’t have the talent to land top players in trades.  The only value they have is expiring contracts, but expiring contracts won’t by themselves land you a good player.  You need to add additional assets.

    In free agency they can at least offer a top level contract to a player.  Their best hope to land an impact player is to offer a max contract and get the player to see the upward direction they are headed.

    My guess is that they have a Josh Smith level talent in mind.  Combining Drummond and Smith with Monroe on the front line would have a dramatic effect on the defense and improve offensive production at the SF position.

    Joe’s not saying he won’t go after a top level talent.  He’s just admitting trades is not where his assets lie.  It makes the Gordon trade all the more important.  Before that trade he didn’t have trade-able players or free agent money.

    • Jan 4, 20139:35 am
      by Revken

      Reply

      Josh Smith is a PF not an SF.  He doesn’t have a great jump shot, so moving him to SF doesn’t play to his strengths and just jams up the middle even more with Drummond and Monroe.  We’d also have to give him a max deal, which would get us in trouble when we have to re-sign Drummond in a few years (assuming we’ve already given Monroe a max deal by that time).  What we need to supplement D & M are a solid passing PG and shooters with range.  We might be available to pick up a decent vet PG (Calderon, Jack, Harris), and we might get a decent wing in the draft (Goodwin, McLemore), or English and Middleton might develop adequately.  There’s no need to break the bank on bringing in high-priced guys like we did with Gordon and CV. 

      • Jan 4, 20139:51 am
        by tarsier

        Reply

        A smart coach who has Smoove, Monroe, and Drummond would only occasionally play the three together. If they each play 36 mpg (which is quite a lot), Smith only needs to be at SF 12 mpg (and there will be times when playing big is advantageous). Not to say that signing Smith is necessarily a great move, but it could certainly work.

        • Jan 4, 20131:33 pm
          by jamesjones_det

          Reply

          Smith is not going to go to any team that plays him less then 35 mins a game.  So who sits? Monroe? Dummond?  Even if you only play the 3 together for a qtr it’s not going to work out minutes wise.
           
          To add to that who comes off the bench?  And who leaves in 2 years because they aren’t happy because someone else is starting? 
           
          Jose Smith is a nice player but if you believe that Monroe and Drummond are the future it makes no sense to bring Smith here.

        • Jan 4, 20132:07 pm
          by Revken

          Reply

          So when it’s time to sign Drummond to a max deal, we’ll already have Monroe and Smith on max deals.  That means 3/4 of our salary will be devoted to 3 guys who basically play 2 positions.  Not a good use of cap space.  Look at Miami, which has 3 guys making that kind of money.  They can at least all be on the court at the same time for most of the game.  IF we are to commit major bucks to another player, he needs to be a wing or PG.  And NOT Rudy Gay – he’s a good player, but he’s not worth his salary. 

  • Jan 4, 20137:58 am
    by I HATE FRANK

    Reply

    Ben Gordon and Charlie V were not really bad signings….

    The problem was Stuckey never developed into that PG or combo guard the Pistons needed, This years Stuckey who is passing the ball better than he has during his whole career might have meshed well with Gordon.

    And Charlie injury was a huge set back for him, and then previous to that once again, being on a team that had no real ball movement…and the Pistons coaching situation and player chemistry was a mess.

    at the end of the day, sometimes its just happens that way…

  • Jan 4, 20139:22 am
    by jamesjones_det

    Reply

    Great!  Maybe we can sign Charlie V and Ben Gorden again…

  • Jan 6, 201311:41 am
    by Roundball1

    Reply

    I think it’s dumb of so many comments stating that no players wants to come to the Detroit Pistons.  The Pistons franchise is still one of the better franchises in the NBA.  Sure, right now we are trying to become a winner again, and so was Boston until they got the Big 3.  I would think no body wants to go to Charlotte, Washington, Toronto, places like that with no winning pedigree.  The Detroit Pistons has a winning pedigree.  After all, how many NBA teams in the league has won at least 3 NBA championship titles and been to the conference finals as much as the Pistons have in the last 15 years?  Think about.  Those banners hanging in the rafters at the Palace instills pride in fans, players and the organization as a whole.  Sure, players would love to come here if the price is right because they know we have a winning history and soon the ship will be righted once again.  And don’t come back talking about the weather.  When it comes to making the kind of money these players are making, they don’t give a damn about the weather…it’s all about the culture and the history of the franchise.  So, stop this stupid talk about no one wants to come here.  The Pistons are still a class act.  Period!

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