On the day of the trade deadline, The Houston Rockets, Detroit Pistons and Philadelphia 76ers completed a three-team deal that sent Donatas Motiejunas and Marcus Thornton to the Pistons in exchange for Joel Anthony and a protected 2016 first round pick. The deal then sent Joel Anthony and a future second-round pick to the 76ers in exchange for the rights of Chukwudiebere Maduabum, who is currently playing overseas.
Four days after the trade happened, the trade was voided due to a failed physical by Motiejunas. However, the Rockets cleared the Lithuanian forward after he was shipped back to Houston and has been playing. Motiejunas is now claiming the Pistons used his back injury as an excuse to void the trade.
“The National Basketball Players Association is strongly considering filing a grievance with the NBA after the Detroit Pistons voided a trade over concerns about Houston Rockets forward Donatas Motiejunas’ back, league sources told Yahoo Sports.”
The National Basketball Players Association is now considering filing with the NBA. The fourth year forward has felt that he was “screwed over” by the Detroit Pistons, telling basketnews.lt (translated to English by Reddit):
“The team doctor simply says whether you pass or don’t, although they may not do any checks,” Motiejunas told the website. “Those 48 hours actually just let the team decide whether they want you or not. The Pistons announced I did not pass the medical, although I surely did pass it and played even before it. I just got screwed. The injury was a pretense to call of the trade. They changed their minds.”
Stan Van Gundy, head coach and team president of the Pistons, felt that the trade “was too much risk” because of his back issue.
In the end, if Detroit really had a concern of his back issues, then they really should not have pulled off this deal, let alone give up a first round pick for him. This might not be a huge concern right now but this is something that could potentially be mentioned again when the season is over.