The Charlotte Hornets have had an interest in Detroit Pistons big man Andre Drummond since last year.
I reported on January 23, 2019, that the Hornets had explored trade scenarios for Drummond in which the Hornets could ship Malik Monk and Nicolas Batum.
That level of thinking has been corroborated by Forbes NBA writer Chris Sheridan in his recent report on Sunday. “Rarely has a player of Drummond’s pedigree been available at the midpoint of a season,” wrote Sheridan.
“But Pistons owner Tom Gores greenlighted a move back in January when the team was on the West Coast, and Detroit let the entire NBA know that they were open for business.”
This season, Andre Drummond is averaging 17.3 points, 15.7 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 2 steals and 1.7 blocks per game.
The Hornets and head coach James Borrego could use the stat-stuffing big man who has a young core of Devonte Graham, Terry Rozier, Miles Bridges, PJ Washington and Cody Zeller.
As of today, the Detroit Pistons and the Charlotte Hornets pretty much have identical records.
Detroit is currently sitting at 18-33 and in 11th place in the NBA’s Eastern Conference and the Hornets are 16-33 and in 12th place out East.
Back in November, my Heavy.com colleague Sean Deveney shared the Hornets were looking to add Drummond to their roster and that he is on the top of Mitch Kupchak’s list of NBA free agents this summer.
Drummond has a $28.7 million player option for next season but has made clear his intention to exercise it and become a free agent.
In a relatively weak class of free agents, he’ll be the big name. Pistons owner Tom Gores has called keeping Drummond in Detroit a top priority, but Drummond has been clear that he intends to test free agency, even if he re-signs with the Pistons thereafter. The Hornets will have cap space this summer, with Bismack Biyombo, Marvin Williams and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist — players making $45 million this season — coming off the books. They could have an offer ready for Drummond at the start of free agency in 2020.
The Los Angeles Clippers and the Dallas Mavericks are also believed to have interest in Drummond. Drummond has said all of the right things while his name has come up in trade rumors. “I was never brought up to be a quitter,” Drummond told ESPN’s Eric Woodyard last week.
“If I start somewhere, I try to finish there, try to complete the mission, which is to win a championship here. It will never be me that wants to go anywhere. … I love being here.”