The 2013 offseason has been an interesting one for the Detroit Pistons, to say the least. While the organization has made significant changes and has undoubtedly improved their squad, deeming the new additions of Josh Smith and Brandon Jennings as "perfect fits" for Detroit's roster is certainly debatable.
However, if the Pistons somehow managed to pull off a trade with Boston for the one and only Rajon Rondo, all questions regarding their thought-process this summer would completely vanish.
Yes, despite the fact Detroit just acquired a talented (yet inefficient) point guard in Brandon Jennings, rumors are still swirling regarding the franchises interest in the Celtics' all-star passing phenom. In fact, it seems the club is intrigued by the idea of potentially using Jennings as a way to obtain Rondo. Via The Boston Globe:
"Just because the Pistons acquired Brandon Jennings in a sign-and-trade deal with the Bucks doesn't mean they've lost interest in Rajon Rondo. In fact, they could eventually use Jennings as a trade chip and seek to acquire Rondo."
Yeah..... I'm killing these "Rajon-Rondo-to-Motown" rumors once and for all.
Detroit's acquirement of Jennings does not improve the organization's chances of receiving Rondo via trade whatsoever. Quite frankly, the Pistons' arguably weakened their ability to agree to terms on a deal with Boston. There are two reasons as to why this is the case:
1) Since Jennings signed a brand new 3 year, $24 mil contract, the floor general cannot be included in any trades until December 15. In theory, this just means a potential deal would have to be put on hold, but in reality, the fact Detroit has to let over 1 month of NBA action occur before even discussing possible scenarios with Boston significantly hurts their chances.
2) Considering the Celtics' are now rebuilding, it is highly unlikely the storied franchise would give up the best passer in the game for a point guard who's primary objective seems to be inefficiently jacking up shots (Jennings boasts 39.4% shooting on 15.5 field goal attempts per game for his career). Honestly, the Pistons' odds of obtaining Rondo would be greater if they still had 21-year-old Brandon Knight on their roster, as Knight is extremely young and has shown signs of improvement during his first 2 years in the NBA.
Now, if Detroit throws in a draft pick or two, that would serve as a huge incentive for Boston to consider pulling the trigger on a trade (once December 15 rolls around, of course).
Unfortunately for the Pistons' organization, GM Joe Dumars' past mistakes deny the franchise the ability to persuade with picks. Via Jay King of MassLive.com:
"Also not helping the Pistons' reported quest to acquire Rondo: they owe Charlotte a first-round pick of the Bobcats' choice at some point between now and 2016, and can't trade any first-rounders until that debt has been paid."
When the Pistons traded shooting guard Ben Gordon to the Bobcats last year, Dumars unintelligently gave Charlotte the ability to utilize one of their first-round picks from 2013-2016. As a result, the Bobcats now hold the key to the cell Detroit carelessly locked their first-round selections in until further notice. Obviously, this plays a significant role in decreasing the ball club's chances of adding Rondo to the roster as well.
Here is the main point: the Pistons may be interested in Rajon Rondo, but the odds of Detroit actually pulling off a deal are slim to none.