The Detroit Pistons had an agreement to trade Rip Hamilton all lined up with the Cleveland Cavaliers ahead of the NBA trade deadline, only for Hamilton to veto the deal and elect to stay with the Piston. Hamilton was reportedly drawing interest from the Cavs, Boston Celtics and Chicago Bulls before the trade deadline, but a deal never came to pass. Hamilton could have been able to secure a prominent role with at least one of the interested teams, but was also unwilling to take a buyout in the event things didn’t work out.
According to a report by Yahoo!‘s Adrian Wojnarowski, Hamilton not only declined the trade offers, but also berated head coach John Kuester. That same report says the feud between the players and Kuester has been overblown, and that it’s only Hamilton attempting to boycott the coach.
As stunned coaches and teammates watched, Hamilton bellowed at Kuester that he had been a failure in his two seasons in Detroit, blown the opportunity the franchise afforded him and was nothing more than a career assistant coach, sources said. Despite Hamilton yelling within inches of him, Kuester didn’t respond.
Wojnarowski added that several of the team’s younger players complained about Hamilton’s actions, and confrontation with Kuester, but were afraid to stand up to the veteran. Hamilton has gotten into it with Kuester at least twice this season, and reportedly tried to organize a boycott of Friday’s shootaround in protest of the coach.
Stay tuned to our StoryStream for the latest as the Pistons deal with the turmoil surrounding Kuester and the feud between the head coach and Hamilton.