NBA Rumors: Strike One Deandre Ayton Suitor Off The List


Who is ready to pony up the max for Phoenix Suns' restricted free agent Deandre Ayton? Several teams have been rumored to be in the mix, with the Detroit Pistons taking the lead role in recent days. 

But after the successful draft the Pistons had Thursday night, landing Jaden Ivey at No. 5, and Jalen Duren in a deal with the New York Knicks, Detroit may have just shifted gears.

The deal earlier this week in which the Pistons sent pricey forward Jerami Grant to the Portland Trail Blazers freed up an extra $20M in cap space, which most observers felt made them the prime candidate to land Ayton. But not so now, according to Pistons beat writer James L. Edwards III of The Athletic.

While all signs have pointed to Detroit making a serious run at Phoenix’s Deandre Ayton over the last few days, that appears less likely after the Pistons walked away with two of the players highest on the organization’s big board. Per sources, Detroit is eager to continue to build back toward playoff contention with the aforementioned young core, and the Pistons are expected to use the majority of their remaining cap space to add multiple veteran pieces rather than just one big swing this offseason, per sources.

Where that leaves Ayton's status is now unclear. Earlier in the week, Insider Adrian Wojnarowski said of the Suns, "I think they're very motivated to find a sign-and-trade. Get some assets back for him. They do not value Deandre Ayton at a max contract."

Today, Suns GM James Jones contradicted that, telling“D.A. remains a huge part of what we do. This team is a really good team and we want to keep it together.”

That remains to be seen.

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