The Pistons also got the ball rolling on trade deadline day, making the first deals of any team as they sent out Reed and Johnson.
Adding Nelson, who's reunited with Stan Van Gundy after serving as his starting point guard during Van Gundy's time with the Orlando Magic, looks mostly like an insurance move for Detroit.
The Bulls acquired Nelson from the New Orleans Pelicans in the Nikola Mirotic trade strictly as salary ballast, and he nearly certainly would have been waived had Chicago not found a taker before the deadline. Earlier today Detroit dealt Willie Reed to the Bulls in exchange for Jameer Nelson.
Later in the after, the Bulls waived the 27-year-old Reed, who was averaging 4.6 points and 2.9 rebounds in 10.2 minutes per game in 42 games this season.
Chicago is granted the right to swap second-round picks with the Pistons in the 2022 NBA Draft. In 43 games with the Pelicans, Nelson averaged 5.1 points and 3.6 assists with a.520 true shooting percentage.
Reed is now serving a six-game suspension without pay for a domestic violence incident that involved his wife. The Pistons have been short at guard since Reggie Jackson was sidelined with an ankle injury on December 26th. Reed had played three games for the Pistons after being acquired as part of the Blake Griffin deal, but was sitting out a six-game suspension for domestic violence. Given that schedule, there is a real chance that the Pistons ride a nine-game winning streak into the All-Star game.
In return they only had to give up Johnson, who didn't even play in a game for the Pistons after coming over in the Griffin trade, and a future second-round pick that clearly doesn't concern them at this point.
Minutes later, the Pistons added small forward James Ennis from the Memphis Grizzlies for Johnson, the same person told the Free Press.
The Pistons had lost eight straight when they traded for Griffin.
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