Donatas Motiejunas Rips Pistons After Bol Bol Report: They're 'Destroying' Futures

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 13, 2022

San Antonio Spurs forward Donatas Motiejunas (28) in the first half of Game 5 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series Tuesday, April 23, 2019, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
AP Photo/David Zalubowski

Former NBA center Donatas Motiejunas took aim at the Detroit Pistons organization Thursday for its treatment of young players.

Mike Singer of the Denver Post reported Thursday the Pistons backed out of a trade with the Denver Nuggets for 22-year-old center Bol Bol because of an "issue" with his physical.

In 2016, Detroit had a deal in place to acquire Motiejunas, who now plays for AS Monaco in Europe, as part of a three-team trade but it later backed out of the agreement because of his physical results.

"I was failed on physicals and told by Detroit doctors I will not play basketball again ... 6 years later I am still here and have many years to go," Motiejunas wrote on Twitter. "They destroying young players names and futures in NBA by doing this."

Further details about what led the Bol deal to fall through weren't immediately released, but Singer reported the Nuggets were "taken aback by the news." They were set to receive Rodney McGruder in the trade.

Motiejunas previously expressed frustration with how the Pistons handled his situation in March 2016.

The Lithuanian post player told Basket News (via Aaron McMann of MLive) he's confident the physical wasn't the reason the trade was ultimately called off:

"The medical examination is a funny thing. The team doctor simply says whether you pass or don't, although they may not even do any checks. Those 48 hours actually just let the team decide whether they want you or not. The Pistons announced I did not pass the medical, although I surely did pass it and played even before it. I just got 'screwed.' The injury was a pretense to call off the trade. They changed their minds."

Meanwhile, Bol's proposed trade to Detroit created intrigue because it paved the way for the 7'2'' center to get the most playing time he's had in his career. He's played a minuscule role for Denver since being selected in the second round of the 2019 draft.

He's averaged 2.4 points and 1.4 rebounds in 5.8 minutes across 14 games this season.

Instead of becoming part of the Pistons' frontcourt rotation, he'll return to the Nuggets and play a bit role behind Nikola Jokic, JaMychal Green and Zeke Nnaji at the 5.

It wouldn't be a surprise if the Nuggets put him back on the block in search of wing depth ahead of the Feb. 10 NBA trade deadline, though.