Free-agent center Zaza Pachulia has agreed to a one-year, $2.4 million contract with the Detroit Pistons, according to multiple reports.
The Pistons will also waive backup center Eric Moreland, according to multiple reports.
The Pistons will be the sixth team for Pachulia, who played for the Golden State Warriors the past two seasons.
Last season he averaged 5.4 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 69 games. He appeared in seven playoff games, averaging 2.4 points and 1.7 rebounds as he won a second ring with the Warriors.
Pachulia has been involved in a number of incidents with players. In the 2017 playoffs, he drew the ire of San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich when he injured Kawhi Leonardby sliding underneath the Spurs star on a jump shot. And last season, the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook accused Pachulia of trying to injure him when he landed on his leg in a game in February.
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In that time, the 34-year-old has been a quality interior defender and efficient post scorer who can provide balance to more perimeter-oriented teams.
While most people focused on the four All-Stars in the starting lineup, he was part of the impressive depth that helped the team bring home two straight championships.
He also showed his lack of ego during the first round of the postseason when he went from a starting player to a bench-warmer.
“It’s all about the team,” Pachulia said in April after Game 2 of the first-round playoff series against San Antonio Spurs, per Logan Murdock of the Mercury News. “JaVale is playing great. There are no worries. Playoffs are fun. Obviously, I want to play, but at the same time, we’re in a position to win two [championships] in a row.”
This mindset will be valuable going forward with an undetermined role on his new team.
Even if he doesn’t get major minutes with the Pistons, Pachulia should provide efficient play when on the court and be a useful player during the upcoming season.
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