It appears Cade Cunningham is coming to Detroit … if the Detroit Pistons keep the No. 1 pick.
The Pistons are still fielding trade offers for the No. 1 pick, but if they hold on to it, they will select the Oklahoma State standout, sources told the Free Press’ Omari Sankofa.
“The team isn’t ruling out trading the pick yet, but only for multiple, significant assets. Would have to be a big offer,” Sankofa tweeted Thursday.
Sankofa confirmed Cunningham is atop of the Pistons’ draft board.
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Cunningham was long projected to be the top pick in 2021, maybe as early as his commitment as a five-star prospect to Oklahoma State. The Texas native did nothing to lose that spot, averaging 20.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.5 assists a game while shooting 43.8% from the field and 40% from 3-point range on a Cowboys team that didn’t offer much spacing.
The Pistons met Wednesday with Cunningham in New York and settled on him as the first pick if they keep it, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported.
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Fans have clamored for the team to take Cunningham, chanting his name during a Tigers game at Comerica Park during his visit to the city and imploring the Pistons all season to lose games — “fade for Cade” — for a better shot at the top pick. Detroit won the draft lottery after finishing with a 20-52 record, last in the Eastern Conference, with a 14% chance at the No. 1 pick.
General manager Troy Weaver has not revealed any plan for the No. 1 pick. He has shied away from committing to Cunningham, saying there are several players worthy of that distinction.
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While Cunningham is widely considered the top prospect, Detroit is said to be enamored with USC’s Evan Mobley and the G League’s Jalen Green.
A smooth 7-foot big man, Mobley averaged 16.4 points on 57.8% shooting from the field and 8.7 rebounds in 33 games as a freshman. He won Pac-12 Player of the Year, Pac-12 Freshman of the Year and Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year while leading the Trojans to the NCAA tournament.
Green, an explosive 6-5 wing, averaged a team-high 17.9 points on 36.5% shooting from 3 and 46.1% shooting overall for the Ignite in its inaugural season.
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