So, which Pistons might be available via trade?
Forward Stanley Johnson is one name that has come up in the Pistons’ conversations with other teams, per ESPN sources.
Opposing teams have come away with the impression that Johnson is available for the right return.
Teams have also asked Detroit about rookie Luke Kennard, per league sources, though the Pistons don’t appear to be interested in moving their 2017 first-round pick.
It will be interesting to see if Detroit finds an offer it likes for Johnson, the 8th overall pick in the 2015 Draft.
Johnson, who missed five games recently with a hip injury, is averaging 7.3 points (35 percent shooting) and 3.7 rebounds in 27.5 minutes per game this season. Scouts view the 6-foot-7 Johnson as a promising defender who hasn’t shown as much potential on offense.
Wojnarowski reported that the Pistons are one of several teams pursuing wing players at the moment; the club pushed for a deal for the Orlando Magic‘s Evan Fournier, per Wojnarowski. It is unclear if Johnson was a part of any discussions with the Magic.
It’s not a surprise, of course, that teams have asked the Pistons about Kennard in these early trade talks. Several teams were interested in Kennard leading into the 2017 Draft.
Kennard thus far is averaging 6.5 points in 17 minutes per game and knocking down 44 percent of his three-point attempts.
As with any trade discussion at this point in the calendar, it’s worth noting that there’s a wide gap between teams having conversations about a player and executing a trade. Executives have conversations about dozens — if not hundreds — of players at this time of year and only a fraction end up being dealt.
But it seems as if the Pistons (22-18) are at least exploring its options after losing five of its last six.
Something else to keep an eye on in Detroit?
Opposing execs have been impressed by guard Dwight Buycks (13 points on 52 percent shooting over the last five games). July is a long way away but several execs see Buycks as a player who will be sought after in the open market by teams that don’t have significant cap space.