The Pistons are staying busy.
They already flipped one of the additional players acquired in the Blake Griffin trade (Willie Reed, to the Bulls with a pick swap for Jameer Nelson). Now, they’re moving the other – Brice Johnson, to the Grizzlies with a second-round pick for James Ennis.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:
Chris Herrington of The Commercial Appeal:
The Pistons are clearly pushing to make the playoffs this season. Ennis is older (27 vs. 23) and more expensive ($3,028,410 vs. $1,331,160) than Johnson, and the pick only adds to Detroit’s cost. But Ennis is better.
Ennis can share minutes at small forward with Stanley Johnson when the match up is too big for Reggie Bullock or Bullock plays shooting guard (which might happen less with the Pistons acquiring Nelson, who reduces the need the for Langston Galloway at point guard). When the opposing power forward isn’t too big, Ennis can also play there behind Griffin and Anthony Tolliver, as Griffin is also Detroit’s de facto backup center.
Both Ennis and Johnson are on expiring contracts. The Pistons could try to re-sign Ennis, but considering their luxury-tax concerns, this is more about this season.
For Memphis, this is about the pick and cost savings. Johnson showed little in two seasons with the Clippers, and – with his third-year option declined – he’s probably on his way out of the league.