The Detroit Pistons and Atlanta Hawks have already held trade discussions focused around All-Star center Andre Drummond, according to ESPN. However, the Hawks aren’t the only interested party: Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors and Dallas Mavericks are all said to also be intrigued by the 26-year-old’s situation.
A reputable report yesterday claimed the Hawks had already begun discussing the possibility of a trade to provide their franchise player – Trae Young – more help, after the 21-year-old voiced his discontent earlier this season about their collective struggles.
Young is averaging 28.5 points, 8.3 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game while leading the Eastern Conference frontcourt voting after the first round of results were revealed earlier this week.
However, the Hawks are currently 7-28 and hold the league’s worst record. Besides a motivated Jabari Parker and John Collins – who served a 25-game suspension earlier this season – his on-court help is limited to say the least.
Food for thought
This season, Drummond is averaging 17.6 points and a league-best 15.8 rebounds per game for the Pistons – who drafted him back in 2012.
With that being said, the 26-year-old has a $29m option on the 2020-21 season and is likely to decline that to become a free agent in a relatively weak class this summer. Given his ability, there’s no reason why another of the 30 teams leaguewide wouldn’t offer him a max contract.
The only way he’d probably opt in, is if he’s among better surroundings – where he’d be better suited to winning. As good as Trae already is, questions will remain as to whether they’ll become an exponentially better team in the East with Drummond’s arrival.
After all, the Pistons were spearheaded by Blake Griffin last season. He fought through niggling injuries to power them into the postseason, where they were beaten in a four-game series by the Milwaukee Bucks – largely without their All-Star on court.
Suggestions also hint that the Pistons are resigned to Drummond leaving at some stage and want to move him before his value diminishes, creating some salary-cap flexibility in future.