We've heard the talk that Brandon Jennings was unhappy with the Milwaukee Bucks and wouldn't commit to the team for the long term. Now we can change the conversation, as the guard has been moved to the Detroit Pistons in a sign-and-trade.
UPDATE: Wednesday, July 31, at 2:53 p.m. ET by Ian Hanford
The Pistons made the deal official via NBA.com on Wednesday:
The Detroit Pistons announce today that the team has acquired guard Brandon Jennings from the Milwaukee Bucks in exchange for guard Brandon Knight, forward Khris Middleton and center Viacheslav Kravtsov.
“We are pleased to welcome Brandon (Jennings) to the Pistons family,” said Joe Dumars, Pistons President of Basketball Operations. “We believe Brandon’s talent and skill-set will complement the core group of players we have assembled on our roster in a positive way. We also want to thank Brandon Knight, Khris Middleton and Slava Kravtsov for their contributions to our organization. We appreciate everything they have done for our team both on and off the court and we wish them the best moving forward.”
---End of update---
Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski has the details of the move:
The Pistons will send Brandon Knight to the Bucks as part of the package for Jennings, league sources tell Y! Sports.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 30, 2013
Detroit will also send center Slava Kravtsov and forward Khris Middleton to Bucks as part of sign-and-trade for Jennings, sources tell Y!— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 30, 2013
He also notes the contract Detroit will give Jennings:
The sign-and-trade for Jennings to the Pistons will be a three-year, $24 million deal, sources tell Y! Sports.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 30, 2013
Jennings' departure isn't all that surprising, as there were rumors he was unhappy during the 2012-13 season. Chris Broussard of ESPN reported the following:
ESPN.com, in an analysis story on 10 NBA players who could be traded, cited sources as saying Jennings is frustrated. One source called it "irreconcilable differences" and said Jennings wants to be moved before the Feb. 21 trade deadline.
"That is not true," Jennings said in a text message when asked if his relationship with the Bucks is beyond repair. "Just because I got a new agent doesn't mean anything. That stuff never came out of my mouth. They're just reaching for a story since I changed my agent [to Jeff Schwartz]."
Well, maybe it was true after all.
Jennings, 23, averaged 17.5 points, 6.5 assists, 3.1 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game last season.
When the Bucks acquired Monta Ellis from the Golden State Warriors in March of 2012, many wondered if the Ellis-Jennings backcourt would drive both away from Milwaukee. It appears it has, as neither will be a Buck next year.
Jennings, of course, made headlines before he ever stepped foot on an NBA court, bypassing college to instead play a year in Europe. He was the 10th player selected in the 2009 NBA draft.
How will Jennings fare with his new team?
He hit the ground running in the NBA. He has never averaged below 15 points or four assists per game during a season, and it seemed like he was primed for a long, successful career in Milwaukee.
But things change, and this move is hardly shocking. The Bucks have dramatically changed the roster in the past year; it will be interesting to see if it's dramatically improved.
In return for Jennings, the Bucks will be getting the 21-year-old Kentucky product Knight, who was the eighth overall pick in the 2011 pick. He averaged 13.3 points, 4.0 assists and 3.3 rebounds last year, but gained infamy for being on the wrong end of a nasty alley-oop slam from DeAndre Jordan.