I’ve posted before about my belief that Greg Monroe should get some minutes, even if it means (and it most certainly does mean) that the team’s performance will slip with Monroe out there some rather than Ben Wallace or Jason Maxiell.
That being said, I wasn’t too surprised he didn’t play against New Jersey. After all, his preseason numbers were really bad (particularly his shooting percentage) and last night’s game was competitive down to the finish. Every team wants to win opening night, so that’s why I assumed there was no Monroe sighting.
But there could also be something more to it. From Vince Ellis’ Detroit Free Press blog:
Pistons first-round pick Greg Monroe got a DNP-coach’s decision, and it wasn’t shocking for those who have been paying attention. From Pistons coach John Kuester’s comments saying Monroe has to improve his motor, you could tell moments like Wednesday night would occur.
A fellow scribe overheard Kuester imploring Monroe to run harder in the team’s last preseason game.
You have to wonder if Monroe will ever meet Kuester’s demands because it’s highly unlikely the skilled but laidback rookie from Georgetown will ever be described as high-energy.
It’s obviously a situation that bears watching.
Yikes. That’s certainly not what any Pistons fan wants to read about their first lottery pick since, ahem, Darko.
But it does raise an important point in my mind: I watched Monroe quite a bit it Georgetown. He was described as a low-motor guy all throughout college. That doesn’t mean he wasn’t skilled — he undoubtedly was. But he doesn’t play with much emotion or fire. Everyone should’ve known that about him.
But did the Pistons? It was widely reported when he was drafted that the Pistons hadn’t worked him out, largely because they didn’t expect him to fall to them. The comments Ellis made does make me wonder if the Pistons knew just how long Monroe has been labeled with the ‘low-motor’ issue. I’m not sure it’s a part of his game that can easily be fixed — it just kind of seems like his personality.
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