Things didn’t turn out quite the way Tayshaun Prince wanted. Instead of playing on a contender or preparing for the playoffs, he got stuck on the Detroit Pistons, going nowhere. But next season? The Los Angeles Clippers should be quite interested when the time comes.
Prince, an NBA champion with the Pistons in 2004, didn’t want to end up on the Pistons this season. He started out this season with the Grizzlies but got traded to the Celtics. Expecting a buyout which would have enabled him to sign for the Clippers, the Celtics instead traded him to Detroit, which meant not getting to play for a contender this season.
But Prince, 35, isn’t planning on retiring or giving up. He’s averaging 7.5 points per game this season and his defense is still above average. In short, he has what it takes to help teams win, and after making $80 million through his NBA career including $7.7 million this season, he’s going to sign a veteran’s minimum to be with the next team that wants him.
Doc Rivers is more than happy to add capable veterans that come for cheap, although guessing right now what his decisions in free agency will be is a bit risky. However, it’s hard to believe there will be no takers for Prince come free agency when he’ll cost practically nothing. A roster spot is a valuable thing these days, but Prince is still good enough to be part of a roster that contends for an NBA title.
Whatever happens, Prince has no plans to re-sign with the Pistons despite spending the first decade of his career there. The Pistons don’t look like a team that’s going to go very far next season, and Prince has a different kind of ending his mind to his career.