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NBA Trade Rumors: Nerlens Noel Deal Discussed Between Mavericks, Pistons

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVDecember 8, 2022

PHOENIX, AZ - NOVEMBER 25: Nerlens Noel #3 of the Detroit Pistons looks on prior to the game against the Phoenix Suns on November 25, 2022 at Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Kate Frese/NBAE via Getty Images)
Kate Frese/NBAE via Getty Images

The Detroit Pistons and Dallas Mavericks have reportedly had trade talks involving center Nerlens Noel, according to Ian Begley of SNY.

Noel has "drawn interest from several contending teams," per Begley.

Detroit acquired Noel in an offseason trade from the New York Knicks, but he has struggled to find playing time with his new team. He's appeared in just six games this season, scoring 11 total points and grabbing 19 rebounds.

The 28-year-old hasn't played in any of the Pistons' last six games despite the squad falling to 7-20 on the season.

The Pistons have instead been relying on young centers Isaiah Stewart and Jalen Duren, making Noel expendable.

Despite his limited action in 2022-23, the veteran could still be an impact player in the right location.

Noel averaged 4.6 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game during the past two years with the Knicks, especially helping on the defensive end. In 2020-21, his 5.2 win shares ranked second on the team behind Julius Randle as the squad earned the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference.

His 3.8 defensive box plus/minus was the best in the NBA that year, per Basketball Reference.

Noel's rim-protection could make him a valuable part of a rotation for any contender, especially one looking to upgrade defensively.

Dallas is fourth in points allowed per game due to the team's slow pace, but the squad is just 11th in defensive rating. No one on the team averages more than one block per game, while veteran shot-blocker JaVale McGee has seemingly fallen out of the rotation.

Adding Noel alongside Dwight Powell could provide depth to the frontcourt as the Mavericks look to build on last year's run to the Western Conference Finals.