EDWARDS: In trading for Joe Harris, the Pistons front office is watching the bigger picture

EDWARDS: In trading for Joe Harris, the Pistons front office is watching the bigger picture

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Entering the frenzy that marks free agency week with nearly $30 million in cap space, Pistons fans the world over have been sleeping with thoughts of how Detroit can spend its dough.

cam johnson Jeremy Grant? Harrison Barnes? Trade for a disgruntled star?

I fell asleep thinking of one of these names, Results. It’s normal.

Well, just hours before free agency started unofficially, the Pistons hit. But not in the way I dreamed or prayed for. on Friday afternoon, The Nets traded for shooting Joe Harris and his expiring $20 million contract, plus two future second-round draft picks, to the Pistons, league sources say. the athlete. Detroit, per league rules, would have to send in $110, cash or a future Top 55 protected second-round pick. Team sources say no Detroit players will be sent to Brooklyn.

Aside from Harris, a 43.7-percent 3-point shooter who provides a service the Pistons need more of, adding the 31-year-old forward to that $30 million Detroit space had to be used when opening Officially free agency. Barring any other deals, the Pistons are looking at close to $10 million in cap space to play the rest of the way.

For most of you, I’m sure the addition of Harris, who only played 14 games two seasons ago due to a nasty ankle injury and eased into last season due to recovery, is the ultimate buzz kill, especially because it opens up more money for the Nets to retain Johnson, who has been clamoring for so many. Pistons fan. Johnson is expected to sign a deal this summer that pays him anywhere from $90 million to $100 million in total. Johnson, 27, is talented. It is the 3D model suite. However, Detroit clearly wasn’t interested in making that kind of commitment to an often-injured player who, to be fair, is just a role player and regularly creeps up to 60 games played per season.

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Some of you will be angry. Some of you may interrupt. Concept.

However, if you can calm down for a second and really care about looking beyond the surface, this is a move by an organization that is more focused on the bigger picture than winning the press conference. The Pistons of the past decade could have overpaid and committed many years to Johnson, who is, again, ultimately just a role player. The pistons of the past decade are why the current system must be more careful now.

Detroit has ambitions to turn the corner next season. This is no secret. The Pistons would like to seek a Play-In Championship, and yes, Johnson could have helped make that happen. However, with that said, Detroit realizes it’s not in a position to give that kind of money to a roleplayer. It doesn’t even have stars yet. The Pistons are hoping Kid Cunningham can become a superstar. They hope Jaden Ivey will be a star. They hope it’s Galen Doreen or Ossar Thompson as well. They hope as you wish. They believe as you believe, but this has not happened yet. If the Pistons are going to surprise some people next season, it will always be because one or two of the aforementioned names started their propensity to superstardom. Not because Johnson was here.

When choosing Harris over Johnson, Grant or Barnes, Detroit gets the shooting it needs. Gets more wing depth. You also get about $20 million in cap space for the next free agency period when the player pool is deeper and more interesting. The Pistons maintain the flexibility to be a player when a superstar becomes available. Detroit could easily get, at least, $60 million in cap space next season. Money talks, no matter who you are.

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Then there’s the other caveat in terms of why the Pistons chose Harris over Johnson: Monty Williams. The new Detroit coach used to be Johnson’s old coach in Phoenix. If anyone is privy to the information on Johnson’s health going forward, and if a long-term money commitment is feasible, Williams will know. Yes, Harris has had his own injury problem lately, but he was still productive last season with only a year left on his deal. Johnson only got over 65 games in a season once during his four years.

Trading for Harris does not win the press conference in Detroit. Nobody says that. Harris is a fine player who delivers exactly what the Pistons need. Needless to say it is more than that. Harris is, ostensibly, not Johnson. However, the gap may not be that great when you think about it, to get Johnson, Detroit would have to stick to a bigger deal and cross their fingers that injury luck is finally in favor of the Pistons. The Pistons can still get where they want to go with Harris on the roster. Again, it all depends on Cunningham, Ivy, Doreen, and others.

The Detroit front office made this move with the bigger picture in mind. This is what a rebuild team should do. Otherwise, you end up like the Pistons of the 2000s.

(Top photo by Joe Harris: Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

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