Knicks acquiring Alec Burks, Bojan Bogdanović from Pistons

Detroit Pistons forward Bojan Bogdanovic (44) during an NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors in San Francisco, Friday, Jan. 5, 2024. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Detroit Pistons forward Bojan Bogdanovic (44) drives against the Golden State Warriors in San Francisco on Friday, Jan. 5, 2024. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

The New York Knicks are acquiring veterans Bojan Bogdanović and Alec Burks from the Detroit Pistons in exchange for four players and a pair of second-round draft picks, Yahoo Sports' Jake Fischer confirmed.

The Knicks are sending Quentin Grimes, Malachi Flynn, Evan Fournier, Ryan Arcidiacono and two second-round picks to the Pistons. ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski first reported the full details of Thursday's trade.

The 34-year-old Bogdanović is a consistent scoring threat, averaging 20.2 points (on 47/42/78 shooting splits), 3.4 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 32.9 minutes over 28 appearances for the struggling Pistons this season. He has averaged nearly 20 points and shot better than 40% from 3-point distance on six attempts per game over the past seven seasons, splitting time between the Indiana Pacers, Utah Jazz and Pistons.

Burks, 32, played for the Knicks from 2020-22, averaging 12.1 points (40/41/83), 4.8 rebounds and 2.7 assists in 27.5 minutes a night. He posted similar numbers in fewer minutes the last two seasons in Detroit.

Not the sexiest move in team history, but this deal represents another example of incremental improvement for the Knicks, who have whiffed on bigger plans for the past two decades. A more reasoned approach has New York tied for the third-best record in the Eastern Conference (33-18), a game back from second place.

The Knicks sure could use the help. Much of their rotation is on the injured list. Mitchell Robinson's ankle surgery could cost him the remainder of the season. Julius Randle is nursing a dislocated shoulder, which will keep the All-Star out through the break. The recently acquired OG Anunoby has missed five games with an elbow injury, and All-Star point guard Jalen Brunson suffered an ankle injury in a victory Tuesday.

New York is 16-3 and owns the NBA's second-best net rating (+13.6) since trading RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley and a 2024 second-round pick for Anunoby, Flynn and Precious Achiuwa on Dec. 30.

Bogdanović can start in place of forwards Randle or Anunoby, until both are healthy, and then come off the bench as another scoring threat for an offense that rates seventh but requires more consistency. Likewise, Burks adds creation behind Brunson in a backcourt rotation that boasts Donte DiVincenzo and Josh Hart.

Thursday's deal retained the Knicks' cache of first-round picks, as well as cap flexibility, for their continued pursuit of another star. Burks is working on an expiring $10.5 million deal, and just $2 million of Bogdanović's $19 million salary next season is guaranteed, per Spotrac. That offers New York the option to cut bait if the trade does not bear fruit or retain Bogdanović for salary-matching purposes in a future (larger) transaction.

For their part, the Pistons landed Grimes in addition to a pair of second-round picks. The 23-year-old was on the fringe of New York's guard core, but he is a willing defender shooting 37.9% from 3 for his career. In a larger role last season, mostly starting, Grimes averaged 11.3 points a game on 47/39/80 shooting splits. He provides low-usage competency as a role player to Pistons guards Cade Cunningham and Jaden Ivey.