NBA Trade Rumors: Teams Eye Pistons' Bojan Bogdanović; Lakers, Suns Linked

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVNovember 14, 2022

Detroit Pistons' Bojan Bogdanovic (44) during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the New York Knicks Friday, Nov. 11, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
AP Photo/Frank Franklin II

Detroit Pistons forward Bojan Bogdanović is reportedly expected to be a popular trade target for teams in need of shooting.

Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports reported on the Please Don't Aggregate This podcast (h/t Jacob Rude of Silver Screen & Roll) that the Los Angeles Lakers and Phoenix Suns are expected to have interest:

"He's a player that I think a lot of winning teams, a team looking to get to the second round that's never gotten there or a team that wants to push their way to really be a title threat (would want)... Phoenix was at the top of everyone's list in terms of suitors that have capital to pay in addition to talent and the salaries that made sense... The Lakers were obviously involved. I got a list of other teams that I think have called and contacted, but nothing too crazy at this point in terms of actual conversations that are still ongoing. I do know Detroit is getting calls on him just like any team (when) we're getting close to the Dec. 15 area where a lot of players who signed (in free agency last summer) are going to be eligible (to be traded)."

Bogdanović, 33, has played well for the 3-11 Pistons after being acquired in an offseason trade, averaging 20.3 points and 3.4 rebounds while shooting 50.5 percent from the field and 43.0 percent from three. The team even signed him to a two-year, $39.1 million extension in late October.

But the Pistons are rebuilding around an intriguing young core of Cade Cunningham, Jaden Ivey, Saddiq Bey, Isaiah Stewart, Jalen Duren and Killian Hayes, among others. That makes dealing Bogdanović for draft capital or younger players a logical option, especially if contending teams come calling.

Both the Lakers and Suns would make a lot of sense as suitors.

The Lakers desperately need shooting, though finding a way to match his $19.3 million salary could be tricky unless it gets folded into the seemingly inevitable Russell Westbrook trade the team will need to make.

Bogdanović isn't the perfect fit for the Lakers—he's more of a stretch 4, a position both LeBron James and Anthony Davis are best suited to playing, and he won't help plug the defense's holes—but his shooting would work wonders for the team's spacing.

He's a better fit for a Suns team that is without wantaway forward Jae Crowder and the injured Cameron Johnson. Pairing Crowder with another contract and potentially a draft pick would be an easy move from a trade perspective.

While the 3-10 Lakers are looking to salvage a season that is teetering dangerously close to being lost, the 8-4 Suns would be upgrading a championship-contending roster.

Both teams will feel a level of desperation to improve: the Lakers to end their free fall, the Suns to maximize the remaining window they have with Chris Paul. The situation is far less dire in Phoenix, however.