Rumors and speculation are swirling around the Detroit Pistons, who are expected to trade for a high-level point guard before the February 8 trade deadline. Should the Pistons target Kemba Walker of the Charlotte Hornets?
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Pistons have remained as “one of the most aggressive teams” on the trade market. They are currently looking for a roster upgrade in order to strengthen their chance of dominating the Eastern Conference this season. Aside from searching for another offensive weapon, Rod Beard of the Detroit News speculated that the Pistons are also shopping for a “high-level PG.”
One of the superstar point guards currently being linked to the Pistons is Kemba Walker of the Charlotte Hornets. With the team still out of the playoff picture, the Hornets are expected to be sellers before the February 8 trade deadline, and Tim Bontemps of the Washington Post sees Walker as a likely trade candidate.
According to Bryan Kalbrosky of HoopsHype, the Pistons could trade Stanley Johnson or Luke Kennard and Reggie Jackson to the Hornets for Kemba Walker. As Kalbrosky notes, Detroit would find an immediate use for Walker, and he could be the “high-level PG” they are looking for. Walker is currently one of the best pick-and-roll ball-handlers in the league, making him a perfect match with Pistons center Andre Drummond.
He could form a formidable backcourt duo with Avery Bradley, whom he considered as the “best on-ball defender” in the league. Also, the trade will allow Kemba Walker to reunite with Pistons associate head coach Bob Beyer and Anthony Tolliver.
The acquisition of Walker will undeniably strengthen the Pistons’ chance of reaching a higher level this season. In 40 games, Walker is averaging 21.7 points, 5.8 assists, and 1.2 steals on 42.5 percent shooting from the field and 34.5 percent from beyond the arc. Unfortunately, the deal is only likely to happen after Reggie Jackson fully recovers from a sprained ankle, which is expected to sideline him for long period of time.
Aside from the Pistons, the New York Knicks are also rumored to be interested in trading for Kemba Walker. However, the Hornets have not made an official statement whether they are willing to move the All-Star point guard. Expect more rumors to circulate around the league as the NBA trade deadline draws near.