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Greg Monroe’s calmness might come from nature, but his love of crawfish probably stems from nurture

Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press wrote a couple good stories on Greg Monroe over the weekend. Among the highlights:

Monroe’s uncle explains why the rookie always looks calm, maybe too calm, on the court:

"I think it’s just a trait that we’re born with in our family," Dixon Jr. said. "We stay calm in all cases because we expect the best.

"Sometimes if you get overhyped or overexcited about a situation and different things, you are unable to make that play, and I think we realize that. Maybe it’s just genetic to keep calm."

How Monroe overcame getting a lot his shots blocked:

"Greg’s not the highest vertical leaper in the gym, but he does have broad shoulders and he’s 6-11," Hetzel said. "He had to figure out how to get his shot up, how to use his body, to use his shoulders, the quickness of getting the ball out of hand and on to the backboard before the athletes that are at the NBA level can block it."

So they worked on Monroe getting the shot to the backboard as quickly as possible, and they used pads for Monroe to hit before going up for a shot.

Whenever a family member visits Monroe, his mom sends New Orleans-style food for her son. What should she send next?

"Right now I would like some boiled crawfish …about 6 or 7 pounds," Monroe said with laugh. "Spicy, tasty, boiled crawfish right now.

"By myself, easy. That’s not even a full serving."

There’s plenty more in the articles, so read both.


  • Feb 21, 20112:04 pm
    by Laser


    this is a perfect example of why i could never properly blog about this team, even though i’ve got so damn much to say. i’m in such a state of depression and anger about what’s going on with this franchise that it blows my mind that it’s possible for anyoner to care about this team ONE IOTA and muster any interest in a puff piece about greg monroe’s love of home cooking. writing it, reading it, even having it anywhere near the radar. drives me crazy. this will be the last time i complain about any content on this site, and i respect and appreciate what you guys do, but i’m at my wit’s end here.
    this is such a crucial time for the franchise, the next three days. whether the team is sold or not, a decision to do nothing is objectively the wrong one. maybe karen davidson is such a fool that she’s dead set on making no moves until the team is sold, but how could she have ZERO basketball minds around her to advise her on maximizing the team’s value going forward? how stupid could she be?? it is an objective mistake to stay the course.
    and i honestly think joe’s got something to do with this. he wants to move rip and only rip, and if he can’t move rip, he wants to shrug it off and say, “hey, i want to move rip but i can’t. there’s nothing else i can do!” or something. because he assembled this team single-handedly and so recently, there aren’t many moves he can make without admitting he’s done a TERRIBLE job. he’s too proud to trade charlie or gordon; WAY too proud to trade stuckey; when it comes to tracy and tayshaun, trading them is waving the white flag on the season, and he’s too proud to do that, even if it means an objectively brighter outlook for the future. imagine that: burying your head in the sand so as not to admit what EVERYONE ELSE KNOWS, and the result is to help ensure you never improve your fortunes. plus i just plain think joe likes having these guys around, and he’s so damn comfortable here. not doing the team any favors.
    this is all about excuses. every problem with this team was apparently unforeseeable and the result of bad luck. rip makes a juicy scapegoat. all these losses come down to missed opportunity. right. you want to talk missed opportunities? they were talking yesterday about the last time one team had four all-stars. it was the pistons, of course, and tayshaun felt like a notable snub. this was 2006. four all-stars. and what do we have to show for 4.5 all-stars? in three days, officially “ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.” the wallaces already left in free agency, we traded chauncey for wasted cap space (and he went on to two consecutive all-star appearances, yet we couldn’t even muster a pick), rip’s overpaid and disgruntled and out of the rotation and a major albatross, and tayshaun will go the way of the wallaces if we don’t do something. and joe acts like if the ball bounced a little differently in, what, twenty games or something, the team would be looking good.
    sorry for the tirade. i hope i’ve given people something worthwhile to talk about. i mean, crawfish is cool, but… sigh. god this hurts.

    • Feb 21, 20113:20 pm
      by Patrick Hayes


      I just want to point out that I don’t consider in-depth features on a rookie who is considered a cornerstone of the future of the franchise ‘puff pieces.’ People in Detroit know relatively little about Monroe, and Ellis did a nice job with those stories.

      • Feb 21, 20114:49 pm
        by Laser


        okay, it’s a special interest piece. maybe not that “puffy.” but i’m going crazy here!
        my take is that monroe is both (A) here to stay, and (B) not promising enough to hang your hat on. there’s no limit to the puff i’d read on a guy like blake griffin who could turn a franchise around. i feel like every time i hear about our “promising young core of players” (monroe, daye, jj, stuckey) i want to throw up. not promising enough by half. and everything anyone has to say about them looks like nothing but a hollow attempt at distraction from this team’s serious and fixable problems.
        again, sorry for my negativity. it’s looking fantastically likely that you won’t have to look ay my ugly face anymore once thursday comes and goes.

  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Patrick Hayes, PistonPowered Feed. PistonPowered Feed said: Greg Monroe’s calmness might come from nature, but his love of crawfish probably stems from nurture: Vince Ellis… http://bit.ly/dO5aq5 [...]

  • Feb 21, 20113:05 pm
    by detroitpcb


    contrary to Laser, i actually learned something from this piece. I didn’t know that Steve Hetzel had worked with Monroe on getting his shot up faster and at different angles from early in the season when everything Monroe put up got blocked. I thought Monroe had figured that out on his own.

    This clearly demonstrates how coachable this kid is. He picked up that information quickly and was able immediately execute what he had learned.

    So give the coaching staff some props for what they have done with this kid. Also give them some props for reinserting Austin Daye into the rotation and giving him meaningful minutes.

    And give them credit (after a year and a half) for figuring out that Rodney Stuckey is not a point guard and moving him to the two slot.

  • Feb 21, 20113:11 pm
    by detroitpcb


    nobody around Davidson is a basketball person. They are all business, marketing, accountants, and lawyers. What is going on right now is strictly business and has almost nothing to do with what is taking place on the court.

    i truly believe Joe’s hands are tied. I don’t think he can take on any salary at this point.

    Unfortunately, that means we get nothing for Tay, T-Mac, or Wilcox and probably means we are unable to trade Rip, Ben Gordon, Max, or CV.

    Anybody wanting to trade Stuckey is just plain stupid.

    • Feb 21, 20114:59 pm
      by Laser


      a good business person would advise her to manage her business in a way to maximize its value. if i was a businessman and someone came to me with an interest in selling her soup business, i’d talk to at least a few people who knew something about soup before doling out idiotic advice.
      as for joe, it is not about taking on salary. it requires no salary whatsoever to trade tayshaun to dallas for caron butler’s expiring contract and a draft pick. or to trade mcgrady for a damn pick or rookie (which would be an insanely wise and insignificant investment in very many cases). it requires no salary to ship off ben gordon for an expiring deal in order to clear cap space and go after a top free agent like zach randolph… or just to give yourselves the flexibility to do so in the future while having minimal impact on your team’s current production.
      you’re dead f*cking wrong on stuckey. he’s not that good. is he your new austin daye or something? you don’t want to DUMP stuckey for some expiring deal, but i’d trade him in a split second if the right deal came along. a promising young big man, a juicy draft pick. anyone who thinks stuckey is just plain untouchable is just plain stupid. and i’ll take that to the grave with me.
      what i hate is jokers who come in and make excuses for this mess. there are a great many ways to improve this team’s future without changing their salary commitments, or in some cases, even dumping salary like in the case of ben gordon. taking on salary is not the only way, and to shrug it off because ownership is in flux is insane.

  • Feb 21, 20117:10 pm
    by detroitpcb


    Laser, you just don’t find scoring guards willing to go to the hole and take the punishment to get to the line like Stuckey does. Now that the refs are giving him the whistle he is a valuable piece. He can take anybody in the league to the basket with his size, strength, and guickness. Besides, nobody is going to give you Andrew Bynum for him. I know Stuckey’s basketball IQ leaves something to be desired. But at the two that problem is minimized. And both Monroe and Daye are high basketball IQ guys so if we can add a point guard, Stuckey will be a fine player for the next 4-5 years.

    I agree with you totally about Karen Davidson but that does not change how things are.
    Laser, when your franchise is in the middle of complicated sale negociations I have to believe that Joe is totally out of the loop right now – that the last thing Karen Davidson wants to hear is “will she approve a trade” right before these talks either conclude or fall apart. It sucks. You are right that this is a crucial period for this franchise. You are right that deals could be made that do not take on salary. You are right that deals should be made.

    I just don’t think Joe has the ability to act right now and that is not making excuses for him.

    • Feb 22, 20111:28 am
      by Laser


      my entire point is that “standing pat” is OBJECTIVELY a bad choice for this team. it’s not hard to rubber stamp a trade. it would take a complete and total asshole to leave this team together right now, pending sale or not. apparently there’s a quibble about the price of the team, and it’s about to become significantly less valuable once the deadline passes if no trades are executed. so if karen davidson wants to maximize the value of the team she’s selling, she must capitalize on some of these assets before they walk away in free agency.
      my issue with stuckey is this: joe has said he wants to bring back stuckey and t-mac. he’s said he wants to keep gordon and charlie, along with daye, jj and monroe. ben wallace isn’t going anywhere, and neither is bynum (who wouldn’t get you much in trade anyways). so, in joe’s perfect world, that’s his roster. does that roster look at all familiar to you? it should, because it’s THE SAME DAMN ROSTER WE HAVE NOW THAT’S BEEN LOSING 2/3 OF ITS GAMES FOR GOING ON TWO SEASONS! this isn’t a damn dream world. you can’t just keep all the guys you want to keep and HOPE you suddenly develop chemistry that’s eluded you for two entire seasons.
      you like stuckey? me too. he’s fine. but he’s the rare pistons who has trade value and plays the same position as a guy like rip, who we can’t trade. we pay rip, we better play him. so we move another shooting guard. it’s that simple. stuckey would be an awesome guy to bring off the bench as a third guard, but we can’t afford that luxury. the team stinks. no pain, no gain. you’re not going to get any better by being staunchly committed to trading ONLY the players who CANNOT BE TRADED. get me??
      so jonas replaces tayshaun in the rotation and max replaces wilcox (because you’re not likely to add anyone better than max in free agency unless you trade someone you would prefer to keep in a perfect world). and you think this is a winning formula for the pistons? it VIRTUALLY GUARANTEES a repeat of this season, and that might be a best case scenario. why do i have to spell this out?

  • Feb 21, 201111:38 pm
    by BIG MARV


    I agree with you laser time to make some moves you have 3 days to do it if nothing happens including the sale of this team the Pistons are in trouble. Its time for Mrs davidson to take the handcuffs off of Joe D asap so he can make some moves.

    • Feb 22, 20111:35 am
      by Laser


      handcuffs or not, something must be done. it’s in everyone’s best interest and would be a TOTAL NIGHTMARE for all parties involved (buyer, seller, players, fans, etc.) to just let tayshaun expire, hold onto all these shooting guards, and i don’t even know which scenario i’d prefer for t-mac: having him walk away (negating the entire point of ever signing the guy in the first place) or taking a chance on him with a multi-year contract (if he was even willing to finish his career rotting in a perpetually stalled rebuilding project). the one guarantee is that t-mac is one of the most productive players for the price and would get us a nice return. a pick, a young prospect on a rookie deal. i just don’t see how you even chance this. makes a fella think joe dumars quit making “basketball decisions” long ago.

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