Pistons rumors: Jerami Grant, Marvin Bagley, Jalen Brunson, Mitchell Robinson, Chet Holmgren

Pistons rumors: Jerami Grant, Marvin Bagley, Jalen Brunson, Mitchell Robinson, Chet Holmgren

Pistons

Pistons rumors: Jerami Grant, Marvin Bagley, Jalen Brunson, Mitchell Robinson, Chet Holmgren

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HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto and The Athletic’s James Edwards III discuss the futures of Jerami Grant and Marvin Bagley, preview Detroit’s draft and free agency plan, and more on the latest edition of the HoopsHype podcast.

For more interviews with players, coaches, and media members, be sure to like and subscribe to the HoopsHype podcast on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and anywhere else you listen to podcasts. Listen to the podcast above or check out some snippets of the conversation in a transcribed version below.

1:15 Jerami Grant’s future

Scotto: The other night, Detroit played Portland, and Josh Hart and Jusuf Nurkic both posted photos of themselves talking with Jerami Grant on Twitter. I got a kick out of that. It was like an eyes emoji kind of thing. Portland, given their situation where they’re trying to retool and not necessarily rebuild around Damian Lillard looking ahead towards next season, was in the mix to try to trade for Grant at the deadline.

Edwards: The Nurkic and Hart thing was hilarious. I know Hart and Jerami are from the same area… It definitely looks like eyes emoji. I reported it, and you did as well, that the Blazers were one of the teams persistent in trying to get Grant. I don’t think at the time they had the assets Troy Weaver was looking for to trade Grant. He’s somebody they like and a good player. Troy had all the leverage. He doesn’t have to trade Grant.

Portland’s going to find itself in an interesting situation where they could have a high draft pick coming up… Maybe if it’s high enough, it’s an offer the Pistons can’t refuse. If Jerami gets traded anywhere this offseason, it’s going to be Portland. It feels like Portland is still the front-runner.

In terms of Jerami’s future in Detroit, I think it’s interesting. They like him, and he likes it here. I think where they pick in the draft is going to have some type of impact on what they decide to do. If they end up picking in the Top 4 or Top 5 and one of those forwards are there for them, I think it’s possible you could see Grant moved if the Pistons end up with Paolo Banchero, Jabari Smith, Keegan Murray, or Chet Holmgren.

On the other hand, if they pick five, sixth, or seventh, and it’s Ben Mathurin at shooting guard, it’d be a Cade Cunningham, Mathurin, Saddiq Bey, Grant, and Isaiah Stewart lineup.

Scotto: A lot of times when a trade is going down in the NBA, it comes down to need and whether there’s a little bit of desperation there. When I look at Portland’s situation, they got Josh Hart. Jusuf Nurkic is going to be a free agent, but there are enough people around the league that believe Nurkic and the Blazers will work out a deal, and he’ll stay there looking ahead towards next season and beyond. If you’re going along with that line of thinking, you’ve got Hart, Nurkic, Lillard. A lot of people around the league also believe Anfernee Simons will remain with the Blazers, and that’s why they made a lot of salary cap-saving moves to ultimately have more room to re-sign him and make another move going forward. Jerami Grant would plug a hole there at the four for them. Given where they’re at trying to compete with Lillard and his timeline, Grant is in the prime of his career at 28.

For Detroit, while Cunningham is a bright young prospect, and they’ve got some pieces there, including a high lottery pick, it seems like the timelines don’t necessarily match there. Some people around the league have always wondered if there was going to be an expiration date. Plus, Grant is seeking a max extension if he can get it. That’s a lot of money, and I don’t know if you’re the Pistons right now if it behooves them to do that.

Edwards: I think a lottery pick would be the kind of sweetener that would do it (get Detroit to trade Grant). Portland is obviously heading towards that trajectory. It wasn’t all the way clear at that point at the deadline. Troy was in no rush to get something done at the deadline. My gut tells me that Portland really makes a legitimate push and goes and gets Jerami.

Scotto: Portland will likely have a high lottery pick. I don’t know if they go that high (in a trade offer for Grant). Maybe a future first-round pick with protections I could see from Portland’s side. When I’m looking at the landscape of teams that, as of today, have interest in Jerami that would have the desperation and assets to get it done, I’d think Portland has a really good shot.

The Lakers had interest, but I don’t think that appealed to Jerami in terms of where his fit would be on that team and the assets the Lakers had. For a while, they were dangling Talen Horton-Tucker, Kendrick Nunn, and a first-round pick. I don’t know if having another pick at their disposal going ahead will move the needle for that.

When you look at the rest of the NBA, Washington had been linked to him as well, but they got Kristaps Porzingis.

12:12 Marvin Bagley’s free agency future

Edwards: I think there’s a wrinkle in the qualifying offer. If Marvin doesn’t meet the starter criteria, which is 41 games started or 2,000 minutes played, I think that qualifying offer is cut in half, to my understanding. It would be like $7.1 million. I think right now there’s no way he can reach that criteria, so I think they’re looking at a tender offer of around $7 million. I think that makes it a little more palpable.

He’s averaged 14 (points) and seven (rebounds). That’s nothing to brush under the rug. Obviously, there are questions about his defense, and he was in a weird situation in Sacramento. Since he’s been in Detroit, they’re using him in the post. They’re allowing him to face up. Offensively, he’s very gifted. I still think there’s something with his shot that can come along with time. He’s only 23. I don’t think $7 million per year for a guy like that is a bad number.

What Detroit has to consider is they have a lot of cap space this summer. They can choose to have a lot of cap space next summer. Blake Griffin’s contract comes off the books this summer. Do you want to commit three years, $21 million, or so to Marvin? I think it’s possible. I think Detroit wants to have Marvin here long-term. I’ve talked to him. Every time he talks about Detroit, he talks about his future here. He’s a good locker room and a nice guy. He fits the culture. I think Detroit’s plan is to bring him back. In what role? I think right now, it seems most likely, because of his limitations defensively, he’s going to be looked at as one of the main two pieces off the bench moving forward.

17:08 Killian Hayes’ long-term future

Edwards: He just played his 82nd game (overall). He’s had a lot of injuries… He’s shown some good things of how advanced of a passer he is, and he’s one of the team’s better on-ball defenders… There’s the old adage you can teach a guy to shoot. We’ve seen Jason Kidd and Lonzo Ball and other examples. For Killian and Cade Cunningham to co-exist, Killian has to be able to space the floor… I don’t think Detroit is ready to punt yet. I think because he’s 20, I don’t think they have an issue with him coming off the bench to try to figure it out.

21:05 Pistons free agency targets

Scotto: I’ve heard some people in that front office that have an eye for Jalen Brunson. I’ve also heard there are people in the front office that could see Mitchell Robinson, who’s an unrestricted Knicks free agent, as a guy that they’d also look at. Deandre Ayton’s name has been floated out there too. My observation on this is guys like Brunson and Robinson are targets for Detroit because they’ll command less money (than Ayton).

With Ayton, you’d have to give him a full max to try to get him there and out of Phoenix going into his (restricted) free agency. I think that would be tough. Whereas, with Brunson, Dallas knows there’s going to be a market for him. One of the reasons they got Spencer Dinwiddie was a hedge to cover themselves depending on what the market bears for Brunson. The Knicks have Robinson entering free agency and also have an eye for Brunson with the relationship with Leon Rose. They do need a point guard looking ahead. Immanuel Quickley is there, but it seems like he’s viewed as a microwave scorer off the bench, and Tom Thibodeau likes him off the bench in that role.

Edwards: I agree. I like Ayton. I don’t think they’re going to go that deep into the well for him. Same for Miles Bridges. He’s a guy that’s been attached to them because he’s from Flint, Michigan. I like Miles, but if you end up with a forward in the draft and you already have Saddiq Bey, I don’t see committing that type of money.

Brunson, I think, would be the perfect fit alongside Cunningham as a secondary ball-handler. He can be the lead ball-handler too, shoots the ball well, he’s good defensively, and takes the pressure off of Cade.

Whether he wants a bigger role, I think New York could maybe give him that in terms of being more of the guy and being in the spotlight.

26:15 Pistons draft targets

Edwards: I think Chet (Holmgren) would go No. 1. Defensively, with the potential there, the sky’s the limit. He has offensive tools that could really develop into something. After that, it gets interesting. They like Jabari Smith. They like Paolo Banchero. To my knowledge, they really like Keegan Murray from Iowa. I think they really like Ben Mathurin from Arizona. My gut tells me at No. 2 it could be Jabari… If I had to rank it, I’d go Chet, Jabari, Murray, Banchero, Mathurin, (Jaden) Ivey based on talking to people around the league and checking temperatures every now and then.

You can follow Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) and James Edwards (@JLEdwardsIII) on Twitter. 

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