The Detroit Pistons have just two free agent movements so far, but they have added good value to the team.
This will be quite an exciting team to watch this season.
Under GM Troy Weaver, the Detroit Pistons have made some noise every offseason. The Pistons have dabbled in every which way throughout Weaver's total roster revamp, from the draft to trades and free agency.
As such, many believed the Pistons' offseason pyrotechnics this year would be greater than anything before, especially since they had the most cap space in the NBA. By Summer League's first night, however, things had quieted down for the Pistons.
That should not be too surprising since the Pistons completed most of their marquee moves at the draft and before the start of free agency. In exchange for accepting Kemba Walker's deal from the Knicks, the Pistons deliberately chose Jalen Duren at No. 13 in the draft.
In order for New York to get Jalen Brunson, the Pistons then acquired Nerlens Noel, Alec Burks, and a pair of second-round choices from the Knicks. Despite those transactions using the majority of their cap space, the Pistons then began free agency with a squad heavy on guards and centers and lacking wing depth.
The Pistons chose to sign Kevin Knox rather than try to splash out on a more costly veteran wing like TJ Warren or Otto Porter. That's not necessarily bad, but it doesn't address their lack of wing depth that much either.
This is where we go to Marvin Bagley III, whose contract has been extended following a successful 18-game appearance in Motor City last season. He could e a low-key great re-up for the Pistons.
*Watch NBA Games LIVE with fuboTV (click for free trial)
Detroit Pistons 2022 NBA Free Agency Grades
Extending Marvin Bagley III: B+
The Detroit Pistons decided to re-sign restricted free agent power forward Marvin Bagley III to a three-year, $37 million deal. It's well-deserved for the fourth-year power forward.
Recall that last February, Bagley was part of a four-team transaction that included the Pistons. He was disgruntled as a Sacramento King, but he rediscovered his form as a Detroit Piston. In just over the course of 18 games for Detroit, Bagley averaged 14.6 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.1 assists, and 0.7 steals per game. The 23-year-old, 6'11 big man's main value for the Pistons is his scoring ability. They are also working on improving his defensive skill-set.
Marvin Bagley III in his first four seasons:
Another big move for the Pistons. pic.twitter.com/5GzIniHaS6
— StatMuse (@statmuse) June 30, 2022
It will be interesting to see how Bagley pairs up front with Isaiah Stewart in a full season. It'll also be interesting to see who will be the main backups for them. Will it be Nerlens Noel? How about Kelly Olynyk or Isaiah Livers? Or rookie big man Jalen Duren?
With erstwhile star scorer Jerami Grant now out of Detroit, though, perhaps much of the onus to produce scoring from the 4 spot will indeed fall on the shoulders of Bagley.
Adding Kevin Knox: B
Kevin Knox and the Pistons just reached an agreement on a two-year, $6 million contract.
After the Hawks decided not to extend a qualifying offer to the forward before the league deadline, Knox became an unrestricted free agency. Following his Thursday agreement to sign a two-year contract with the Pistons, he will now give further depth to their frontcourt for the 2022–2023 season.
Knox averaged 3.1 points and 1.5 rebounds in just 7.4 minutes per game in 30 games with the Hawks and the Knicks last season, so he'll want to secure a bigger spot in his new team's rotation for 2022–23.
Looking ahead, the Pistons still have some cash to spend and a somewhat peculiar roster. Despite the likelihood of Isaiah Stewart playing there as well as Saddiq Bey getting more playing time, they seem content with the power forwards they currently have.
Although that may not be the direction fans would like the club to go, it helps lessen the oddity of a roster that has 5 million centers. When a club has an obvious need at the position and has centers that can play the four, like Isaiah Stewart and Kelly Olynyk, it suggests that the organization sees such players as fitting that role.
Additionally, Troy Weaver remains the GM. At this moment, knowing Troy's tendencies, I would not rule out any type of major trades or substantial signings. The Pistons are exciting, but they might not even be done yet.