General manager Troy Weaver and the Detroit Pistons can’t be too happy about what went down during the 2023 NBA Draft Lottery.
Detroit boasted the NBA’s worst record this past regular season at 17-65. It joined the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs in having the best odds to land the No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft. This end result would have landed Detroit a generational talent in French big man Victor Wembanyama.
Instead, Detroit’s worst nightmare came to realization. It could not have picked any lower than No. 5 overall based on the odds. In the end, that’s exactly where the ping pong ball landed for the Pistons.
Detroit still has a decent young core with Cade Cunningham and Jaden Ivey. Though, we’re darn sure Troy Weaver and Co. are disappointed by Tuesday night’s results.
In talking to the media after the lottery, Weaver made it clear that Detroit is open for business when it comes to the fifth pick in the coming NBA Draft.
“We’re going to turn over every rock and vet it out. If it’s going to help us move forward, we’ll absolutely entertain any of those (options).”Detroit Pistons GM Troy Weaver on draft plans, via Rod Beard of The Detroit News
In addition to Cunningham and Ivey, the Pistons have youngsters such as James Wiseman, Isaiah Stewart and Jalen Duren under contract for next season.
The No. 1 overall pick back in 2021, Cunningham played only 12 games as a sophomore due to injury. Detroit made the decision to sit him early in the campaign, in part due to an increased ability to land the first pick next month. It drew a lot of scrutiny around the league.
Ivey, 21, played pretty well for an otherwise bad Pistons team as a rookie. The 2022 No. 5 overall selection averaged 16.3 points, 3.9 rebounds and 5.2 assists on 42% shooting.
Meanwhile, Wiseman was acquired from the Golden State Warriors at the NBA trade deadline. The former No. 2 pick averaged 12.7 points and 8.1 rebounds in 24 games (22 starts) for Detroit.
Detroit Pistons have options in the 2023 NBA Draft
As disappointing as the lottery results were for Detroit, this team is not without options. The fifth pick can be valuable if the Pistons are indeed looking to move it in a package for a young star to help them expedite their rebuild.
It also must be noted that Weaver and Co. can package that selection with veteran contracts. In particular, forward Bojan Bogdanovic could be of interest to other teams.
Weaver is keeping his options open, too:
“We landed there last year and we were able to add a young talented player to our core in Jaden Ivey,” the Pistons GM said. “Landing here at No. 5 again this year, we’re ready to add another player to our core.”
As all of this plays out, Detroit will also spend the next couple weeks searching for a new head coach. Dwane Casey has moved to a front office role after posting a 121-263 record in five seasons as the Detroit Pistons head coach.