The Pistons want to find out.
Marc Stein of ESPN:
In the next three years, Marjanovic will earn:
His cap number in Detroit will be $7 million each season if the Spurs don’t match, and they probably won’t, because they’ve found a replacement center: Dewyane Dedmon.
Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:
Dedmon is a scrappy big man who protects the rim, rebounds, fouls too much and possesses limited offensive skills. The Spurs could use someone like that with two more finesse bigs — LaMarcus Aldridge and Pau Gasol — starting. It sounds like Dedmon will get the room exception, and that’s good value.
But he’s not nearly as intriguing as Marjanovic, who absolutely dominated in limited playing time as a rookie. Marjanovic averaged 21.0 points on 60.3% shooting, 13.7 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per 36 minutes. The 7-foot-3 center with humungous hands even showed some touch as an outside shooter and passer.
Yet, Marjanovic played just 508 minutes. San Antonio shielded him from quality opponents and tough matchups, of which they’ll be plenty for someone so slow. The risk with Marjanovic is teams running him through pick-and-roll after pick-and-roll until he’s completely exposed.
Marjanovic, who turns 28 next month, is also a year older than Dedmon. Both have more upside than their ages would suggest — Marjanovic due to his late arrival in the NBA, Dedmon due to his late start playing basketball — but age still matters.
How the Pistons create cap room for Marjanovic is a little unclear, though exact salaries for Jon Leuer and Ish Smith are unknown. Joel Anthony will probably be waived. If Detroit feels Marjanovic is ready to contribute, Aron Baynes could be moved.
The Spurs might wish they gave Marjanovic longer than a one-year contract want he signed from Europe last summer, but at least Dedmon is a good fallback option.
The Pistons make the bigger move, likely adding one of the NBA’s fascinating players.