Stan Van Gundy wanted to give Danny Granger a chance, to see if he could get healthy and be even a shadow of the former All-Star and Most Improved Player from his time with the Pacers, a guy who could help a rebuilding Pistons’ team.
But Granger has spent most of camp at his home in Arizona trying to recover from the multiple knee surgeries that have sidetracked his career. While it’s not yet official, Stan Van Gundy made it clear on Sunday that Granger would be the team’s final cut, as reported by Aaron McMann at Mlive.com.
The deadline to trim rosters down to 15 for the start of the NBA regular season is Monday and the Pistons, after the decision to waive guard Ryan Boatright and assign him to their D-League affiliate in Grand Rapids, currently stand at 16. Danny Granger is likely to be the last one cut, a decision that could come soon after Van Gundy said Sunday he remains at home in Arizona rehabbing his knee. About the possibility of trading him? “It’s doubtful,” he said. “We’re probably sort of at the end of the road with him. We took it as far as we could, hoping to get a look at him, but he hasn’t been ready to come back. So we’ll go with the 15 guys that are here.”
This is not a surprise in the least. Granger was traded from Phoenix to Detroit this summer as part of the Marcus Morris deal that was a salary dump by the Suns to make their run at LaMarcus Aldridge. Granger has a fully guaranteed $2.2 million contract he opted into, and the Pistons will pay.
It’s sad to see this happen, but at age 32 this is likely the last shot for Granger. Maybe if he takes a full season off, gets his knee right, and tries to make a comeback a team will take a look. Maybe he beats the odds. But this is a guy who has played in just 76 games over the last three seasons and not had a PER above 10.9 in any of them (and that’s the kind of number you expect in 12-minute a night guy at the end of the bench at best). He’s going to have to show he deserves a roster spot more than a young, developing player, and that’s not likely anymore.