According to multiple sources, the Detroit Pistons have waived small forward Josh Smith, who signed a 4-year, $54 million deal with the team last offseason. It is a stunning move for Detroit, which will stomach the remaining $40.5 million of Smith's contract, receiving nothing in return for his talents.
The Detroit Pistons have just announced the release of Josh Smith. Stunning— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) December 22, 2014
Source: Josh Smith to be waived by #Pistons— Vincent Ellis (@Vincent_Ellis56) December 22, 2014
DAWG RT @BimaThug Pistons will pay Josh Smith $13.5M this year & $5.4M in each of the following FIVE seasons *not* to play for them.— Bartholomew (@PrideOfLR) December 22, 2014
The unholy marriage between Smith and the Pistons can be looked at as nothing other than an abject failure. Smith's shooting percentages in Detroit during his season-and-change with the team were the worst of his career; last season, he attempted a career-high 265 three-point shots, making just 26 percent of them. Head coach Stan Van Gundy reined in Smith's shot selection for the first 28 games of the 2014-15 season, but with the Pistons sitting at 5-23, Van Gundy, who also serves as the team's GM, was forced to make a major move in order to shake-up the chemistry of the rotation. Smith's release certainly qualifies.
It's safe to say that Detroit is an absolute mess right now. It's well-possible that Smith's dismissal isn't the only big move Detroit will be making in the coming weeks, either. Trade rumors are still surrounding power forward Greg Monroe, and point guard Brandon Jennings continues to be an awkward fit for the team.
Meanwhile, expect Smith to find a home with another team in the league before too long. Regardless of how terribly his tenure in Detroit ended, Smith is still a talented player who can rebound and score close to the basket. If Smith can find himself a home with a coach who knows how to lock him in place down-low, then the franchise willing to take him on will be getting a bargain. However, that does appear to sound like a big "if" right now.
Had heard from a Pistons front office member that Detroit daily pursued Josh Smith trades with all 29 other NBA teams. Zero were interested.— Jake Fischer (@JakeLFischer) December 22, 2014
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