A team on the periphery of a spot in the Eastern Conference playoffs and one with a postseason mandate from ownership would seem like a probable partner in trade talks. But when I call around the NBA, I don’t hear the Pistons mentioned prominently in discussions as today’s 3 p.m. trade deadline nears. One high-ranking league executive, who requested anonymity because he isn’t authorized to speak for the Pistons, said the Pistons have gone quiet since coach Maurice Cheeks was fired. Of course that person can speak only for his team. Inside the locker room, the trade deadline doesn’t appear to be much of a topic among players, including one who was surprised to learn the deadline was so close. Owner Tom Gores told reporters a week before firing Cheeks this month: “We’re not focused on the deadline or anything like that. We’re just focused on getting the guys better and preparing them.” This is not to say something can’t happen on the trade front. I was told this week by someone familiar with the situation that the team is open to a deal that would improve the team. President of basketball operations Joe Dumars, who is nearing the end of his contract, has made plenty of trades in his tenure.