This Pistons-Spurs Trade features Keldon Johnson

NBA Analytics Network

An NBA writer proposes that the Detroit Pistons acquire small forward Keldon Johnson from the San Antonio Spurs this summer.

James L. Edwards III proposed that the Pistons send the Spurs the fifth overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft for Johnson and a 2024 first-round pick. San Antonio has the number 1 overall pick in the 2023 draft and will select Victor Wembanyama. Their roster plans go from there.

The all-around skills and scoring prowess Johnson would bring to the Pistons would be a much-needed boost. He would fit in well alongside Cade Cunningham and Jaden Ivey while adding a more dynamic element to their overall squad.

“My logic here was pretty simple: Johnson fills a void for the Pistons as a solid offensive wing that can be effective without the ball,” wrote Edwards III. “His defense could be better, and I think it could be in a more winning situation. He’s only 24 when the next season starts and in my opinion has a valuable contract (4 years/$74 million). His annual salary is decreasing in the first three years of the deal, which starts next season The Pistons also get a first going forward as I don’t believe Johnson alone is worth the No. 5 pick in this draft.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Keldon Johnson, San Antonio Spurs & Detroit Pistons Updates

Johnson averaged 22.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.9 assists for the Spurs this season, while shooting 45.2% from the field, 32.9% from outside the arc and 74.9% from free range. throw line. The 23-year-old Olympian appeared in 63 games and led San Antonio in points per game.

Johnson signed a four-year, $74 million rookie scale extension with San Antonio in July 2022. Next season he will earn $20 million. The Spurs drafted Johnson with the 29th overall pick in the 2019 draft from Kentucky. The Virginia native has career averages of 16.5 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.1 assists.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Keldon Johnson, San Antonio Spurs & Detroit Pistons Updates

The idea for the Spurs would be to get a high-level draft pick to add a wing that better fits Wembanyama’s timeline as the team rebuilds. There will be plenty available on the 5th choice board.

“Why would the Spurs do this, you ask? Well, San Antonio could use the No. 5 pick to get another wing or forward who, like future Spur Wembanyama, will have a rookie deal for seasons to come,” Edwards III wrote. “It will also provide even more cap space for San Antonio this summer. I just don’t see Johnson with the Spurs by the time they are real contenders again, so I could see a deal like this benefiting both parties. Cam Whitmore or Amen Thompson would be nice next to Wembanyama, right?

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