The Pistons made several personnel moves today, slimming their preseason roster of 17 back down to 15 for the regular season opener on October 31.
Two long-shots to make the team, Jonny Flynn and Terrence Williams, were the players cut by the team. Considering it would’ve taken significant contributions by both to make ownership reconsider how the roster looks, neither got much playing time to prove themselves.
In three preseason games (33 total minutes), Flynn shot just 25% from the floor and had five points, eight assists, and eight turnovers. Williams played in only two games (50 total minutes), tallying 8 rebounds, 7 assists, five blocks, six turnovers and five points on just 2-of-11 shooting. With such a lack of production, it’s not entirely surprising. Flynn was outplayed by incumbent back-up guard Will Bynum, and never really seemed to provide a steady hand on offense. Williams was a much more intriguing prospect – being able to play multiple positions, one would think his chances were slightly better than Flynn’s.
With just two preseason contests remaining, it seems like the Pistons are set with their roster and will not make any more moves. The current lineup is set and all that seems to be up for debate is a few spots in the starting lineup. Jason Maxiell and Greg Monroe are the likely power forward/center combination, but with several solid performances in the preseason, including a 19 point-10 rebound game against the Milwaukee Bucks, rookie Andre Drummond has pushed his way into the conversation. Free agent signing Slava Kravtsov, despite limited playing time, has also been mentioned. Regardless of his choice, head coach Lawrence Frank has more options in his lineup than in recent seasons.
In terms of players staying with the team, the Pistons exercised team options for 2013-14 on Monroe and Brandon Knight, two franchise cornerstone players. “Moose” had an option for his fourth season worth $4 million, and he’ll be eligible for a long-term contract extension this offseason, something that Tom Gores and company will gladly give him. Knight’s option was for his third season and is worth $2.8 million.
With the contracts of Bynum, Austin Daye, Corey Maggette, and Maxiell expiring after this season, it should be an interesting offseason. If the Pistons have a poor season and draft high in the lottery, will that affect how they spend the cap space they’re sure to have?