Tayshaun Prince has been looking for a buyout of his contract ever since joining the Celtics via trade with Memphis earlier this year.
Now in his 13th season, Prince presumably would like the chance to join a playoff contender, instead of toiling away in obscurity on a lottery team whose campaign will be finished on April 16.
But that’s not going to happen.
Stan Van Gundy has plans to play Prince, and play him extensively — a scenario which Van Gundy believes had Prince extremely confused, at least initially.
From Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press:
“That’s an interesting situation because I think that was his expectation, quite frankly,” Van Gundy said Friday. “That’s certainly not why we acquired him. We didn’t acquire him with any kind of promise from us that we were going to buy him out. We brought him in here to play and play a lot. I think yesterday when I talked to him, yeah, his head was spinning a little. Things hadn’t gone in a direction he expected.
“Reggie was really, really excited. I think Tayshaun was — not unhappy, but he was sort of trying to figure out what the hell happened, and I understand that.”
It’s worth noting that with the trades the Pistons made, and especially with the addition of Reggie Jackson, they very well may be able to make a run at one of those final playoff spots in the East.
Detroit is currently just a game-and-a-half back of Charlotte for the eight seed, and two hames back of Miami, who may be without Chris Bosh for the remainder of the season.
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Tayshaun Prince – traded from the Celtics to the Pistons yesterday – might want a buyout from Detroit.
Don’t expect him to get one.
Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press:
Further, in his statement on the trade, Stan Van Gundy said of Prince: “He fills a position of need for us at small forward with his offensive and defensive versatility.”
After Detroit traded Kyle Singler to the Thunder, Prince will fill a void at small forward. The Pistons added a little salary in the Prince deal (which sent Jonas Jerebko and Luigi Datome to Boston), another sign they intend Prince to stick. If they didn’t want to keep him for the rest of the season, why make the trade? Obviously, they plan to keep him for the rest of his expiring contract.
Of course, if the Pistons stumble in their five games the rest of this month and Prince gives up enough money – he’s owed $2,493,721 the rest of the season – maybe they change their mind. As long as Prince is waived before March 1, he can join a playoff roster.
So much for a homecoming. Just hours after the Pistons traded Jonas Jerebko and Gigi Datome to the Celtics to reacquire Tayshaun Prince, who spent 10-plus seasons in Detroit and was a key piece on their 2004 title team, chatter has already started that his return to the Motor City may not be for long.
From CSNNE.com’s A. Sherrod Blakely:
A league source told CSNNE.com that Prince may discuss a potential buyout with the Pistons before March 1 which would allow him to play for a more established, playoff-caliber team like the Los Angeles Clippers who, as reported by CSNNE.com last week, will pursue him if he were to become available following a buyout.
Outside of a feel-good return, there isn’t much sense in Prince staying in Detroit. They may be a fringe playoff team, but they’re not a contender, and his minutes and roster spot would be better spent on the players who might help them going forward.
As for which teams might pursue Prince on the free-agent market should he get there, the Clippers are seen as the heavy favorite. They need wings, and even though Prince is past his prime, he fits the exact mold of players that Doc Rivers loves.
Between Prince and Kendrick Perkins, as well as the already-signed Amar’e Stoudemire, there are going to be some recognizable names on the buyout market. Not necessarily players who can help teams win, but names nonetheless.