Boban Marjanovic didn't want to leave the Spurs during free agency, but coach Gregg Popovich knew the Serbian had an offer from the Pistons he shouldn't squander.

He’s such a good kid, at some point I had to work to get him to understand that $21 million was different than $3 million,” Popovich said, via the San Antonio Express-News. “I said, ‘Get your ass out of here. Go. You’ve got to do it.’ But he felt bad.”

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Marjanovic, the tallest player in the NBA at 7 feet, 3 1/2 inches, took Popovich's advice and signed a three-year, $21 million contract with the Pistons, far more than the $3 million he could have taken by staying with the Spurs.

The Spurs brought Marjanovic over from Europe with a two-year, $1.2 million contract. However, the contract made Marjanovic a restricted free agent after one season.

Since Marjanovic did so well with the Spurs, teams were quick to see Marjanovic's potential. With Popovich's help, Marjanovic followed the money to a lucrative deal with Detroit.

"We knew he was gone,” Popovich said. “It happens to every team. You lose a guy because you have to pay people and you can’t pay them all.”

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Even though Marjanovic didn't play in the Pistons' preseason game against the Spurs on Monday, he indicated he is happy where he is now.

“My first wish was to stay (in San Antonio),” Marjanovic said. “But this is good now. I think I made a good decision.”