The Detroit Pistons have agreed to acquire Brandon Jennings from the Milwaukee Bucks in exchange for Brandon Knight, Slava Kravtsov and Khris Middleton.
The Pistons are in the process of signing the talented 23-year-old point guard to a three-year deal in excess of $25 million according to ESPN.com. Jennings is coming off a season in Milwaukee where he averaged 17.5 points and 6.5 assists per contest. He also led the Bucks to the playoffs this past season and attracted a lot of press when predicting the Bucks would beat the Miami Heat in six games.
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This signing coupled with the acquisition of Josh Smith shows that the Pistons are interested in winning immediately and are willing to break the bank to do so.
The lack of suitors vying for Jennings services this off-season made it a particularly difficult one for the young guard. It was rumored that Jennings was demanding $12 million per season from the Bucks, which wasn’t realistic for them or any other team for that matter. The Pistons getting him for around $8 million a season is a nice deal for both sides. The Pistons finally add a proven scorer to their back-court and get a guy that can dish the rock, and Jennings is finally surrounded with a young and talented roster oozing with upside.
Jennings, as a shoot-first guard, is often criticized for his inability to get to the rim and falling in love with his outside shot. Coming to Detroit and playing with a talented front-court may ease his need to take so many contested outside jumpers. Jennings should be able to assume a true point guard role in Cheeks’ system and not have to carry as large of a scoring load like he did in Milwaukee, where he forced an abundance of bad shots.
Jennings comes to Detroit with a lot of the same issues and questions Josh Smith came with: Can he shoot at a higher efficiency? Is he a winner? What does he bring to the locker room?
What the Pistons are receiving is a player with a lot to prove and a contract to live up to. Detroit cutting ties so soon with Brandon Knight shows the amount of stock they are putting in Jennings. This move only proves that Joe Dumars and the Pistons front office believe that the teams future is better suited with Jennings running the point instead of Knight.
More on this to come…