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Pistons waive Cartier Martin, Jordan Bachynski & Adonis Thomas; roster nearly set

Photo: Alyssa Blayney

With the regular season right around the corner, the Detroit Pistons announced Friday morning that they have waived Cartier Martin, Jordan Bachynski and Adonis Thomas.

Today’s transactions means the Pistons’ roster has now been whittled down to 16 players heading into tonight’s preseason finale against the Atlanta Hawks. The NBA mandates that teams carry no more than 15 players at the start of the regular season.

Danny Granger, acquired this past summer in a trade with the Phoenix Suns, has been absent from training camp while rehabilitating a foot injury and is expected to be a prime candidate for the final player released before next Tuesday’s regular season opener. However, with a $2.2 million guaranteed salary for 2015-16, the Pistons are likely exploring trade avenues for Granger before officially parting ways.

Today’s news all but ensures the retention of small forward Reggie Bullock. The 6-foot-7, 205-pound wing has done all that has been asked of him this preseason, leaving his coaches impressed along the way.

“You couldn’t have a much better preseason than what he’s had. No question about it,” head coach Stan Van Gundy said last week after Bullock’s 17-point performance against the Bulls.

Martin, alongside center Aaron Gray, was one of the first signings of the Stan Van Gundy era in the summer of 2014. Brought on board for his size and shooting range, he’d shot no lower than 38 percent from the arc since 2010, Martin struggled with injuries throughout most of his first year in Detroit, appearing in just 23 games and shooting a career-low .182 percent from three.

After opting in to the second year of his deal, Martin’s hopes of making the roster all but vanished after the Pistons’ steep upgrade in small forward talent (the additions of Marcus Morris & Stanley Johnson, primarily). Martin also struggled with a sprained wrist throughout training camp. The Pistons will be on the hook for his $1.3 million salary for the upcoming season.

Thomas earned a training camp invite on the heels of strong play last season with the Grand Rapids Drive, the Pistons’ D-League affiliate. Thomas averaged 18.0 points and 4.6 rebounds in Grand Rapids but among a 20-man preseason roster that included 17 guaranteed contracts, his chances of sticking around for the regular season were limited from the start. Thomas made just one preseason appearance, scoring two points in 10 minutes.

Bachynski, meanwhile, was brought on board primarily to serve as another oversized body to throw around at Andre Drummond throughout training camp. Standing at 7-foot-2, the Alberta native picked up the slack in practice after new acquisition Aron Baynes suffered a minor ankle injury early on. In two preseason appearances, Bachynski scored six points in six minutes.

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