Jackson badly wanted to have his own team, which was never going to happen in Oklahoma City. He finally got his wish when he was shipped to the Pistons (who had lost Brandon Jennings earlier in the season to an injury) at the trade deadline, and his numbers after the trade seemed to be indicative of a franchise point guard.
Jackson averaged 17 points and nine assists for the Pistons with a 51.1 true shooting percentage and a 19.0 player efficiency rating. That’s not to say he was pristine – far from it. His defense struggled, and his turnover percentage jumped from 12 to 17 percent. Three months does not a starting point guard make, and if you factor in Jackson’s numbers when he started in place of Russell Westbrook, that might make you even more hesitant to hand him the reins of your franchise. So, this contract is a bit of a gamble, especially for general manager and coach Stan Van Gundy, who now has two ball-dominant guys in his backcourt.
The price seems steep for the Pistons, especially since there didn’t seem to be much interest in Jackson outside of Motown. He’s a good player, but perhaps not $80 million good, even with the salary cap set to explode. It’s also worth mentioning he turned down a four-year $48 million extension with the Thunder. He really didn’t want to play behind Russell Westbrook.
The Pistons were bidding against themselves here, and while it’s good they locked up their point guard for the future, they likely could have done it at a lower cost.