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Do the Pistons have a plan for Greg Monroe this summer? They better

Me at the Detroit Free Press:

The Pistons not making a move at the trade deadline probably was OK.

Unless it was an utter disaster.

Sure, it would have been nice if the Pistons unloaded Josh Smith or got value for the expiring contracts of Rodney Stuckey or Charlie Villanueva. But missing those opportunities won’t cost the team in the long run. This summer, Smith’s contract will be shorter and more tradable, and Stuckey and Villanueva will come off the books and offer enough salary cap room to add an impact player.

But not trading Greg Monroe? If that was a mistake, it’s irreversible.

Hopefully, it wasn’t a mistake.

For the record, I wanted the Pistons to keep Monroe. I believe he can play with Andre Drummond (though with Smith at small forward), and I like Monroe’s efficiency-based skill set. He obviously needs work defensively, and he’s not a great athlete. But at 23, he likely hasn’t peaked.

However, as I’ve said since the extension deadline passed in October, the Pistons should keep Monroe past the trade deadline only if they’re willing to give him a max contract this summer.

Now, I wonder how certain the Pistons are about Monroe. Did they decide they’d pay him max money if necessary? Or does Gores just want the team to make that choice when he sees fit, regardless of how big a bind the timing puts the team in? This was the last chance to trade Monroe in a non-sign-and-trade, so deferring the decision would only mean fewer options.

Complicating matters, the Pistons might have a new general manager when Monroe hits free agency. After Gores stepped in to fire Cheeks, Joe Dumars might not carry the same power within the organization anymore. Could he even trade Monroe if he wanted to?

Hopefully, someone in the front office who will remain there this summer — even if it’s Gores himself — drove the decision to keep Monroe and did so for all the right reasons. This would be simpler if the Pistons had a more stable general manager, someone executing a multiyear plan. If they don’t, though, the responsibility falls to Gores to ensure that the long term is accounted for.

If the Pistons made a conscious choice to keep Monroe because they’re willing to give him a max contract, we’re fine here. But if they’re just delaying their assessment of Monroe’s value, they’re asking for trouble this summer.


  • Feb 21, 20142:59 pm
    by pablum


    …Well, it’s 2:50PM Friday — Time for the old man’s first puffy. I’ve got a huge Cheech and Chong one already rolled up right off that crazy record they did in the 70′s with that album size Zig-Zag. Beware injured Hawks! (cough…cough…COUGH!!!) — (where’s my godless defibrillator?!). Just want say a couple of things before I die, here. (yep,I know the pro-scribes can’t wait for that one…).
    I don’t know about you, but I have complete faith in an owner who could have avoided the whole Gordon/draft-pick fiasco had he simply allowed our Lord Dumars to amnesty Gordon, instead of, as has been reported, deciding not to amnesty Gordon on the basis of a “moral” decision that he does not believe in “paying people NOT to work.” Yep. this is the story making the rounds. Gores took the Tea-Party Line that Gordon was a welfare queen whom under no circumstance would he coddle by amnesty. Even though this may now completely fuck us. Gores is man of high principle (when he’s not fucking his brother’s wife of course) who should surely be trusted to make smart, long-term, thoughtful decisions about Monroe’s future and place with this team, including, of course, firing our Lord and Savior Joe D. (well maybe mine and few others) and making his own damn decision on who should be the next GM of this team! All hail Gores! (And now we know why Mike Stone tweeted that Gores is an idiot…)

    • Feb 21, 20145:00 pm
      by zdh



      • Feb 21, 20146:01 pm
        by pablum


        here my Piston brother: http://detroitsportsrag.net/tom-gores-has-no-effing-clue/#more-2990
        PS. David Mayo wrote in Mlive today, that Joe will likely “retire” (be retired?) at end of season…

  • Feb 21, 20143:03 pm
    by sushi


    Trading Smith may be going to get easier after this season, but still pretty difficult because of his huge contract. If the Pistons can’t trade Smith away, what is going to happen? Giving Monroe a max deal doesn’t sound good if they can’t get rid of Smith. Trading Monroe and use money for FAs?

    • Feb 21, 20144:31 pm
      by Huddy


      That’s the bigger problem.  I can understand being confident with Monroe going forward but if reports are true and the team turned down offers on Smtih I highly question the intelligence of not moving either one when there were offers With how they have preformed as a unit.

  • Feb 21, 20143:24 pm
    by Andy


    Monroe is average. I don’t know why the writer is so set on keeping him. He gets outplayed almost nightly. We should have traded him while his value was high. He’s not worth a max deal, he’s not even worth 10mil a year.
    His soft defense does not match what the Detroit Pistons are suppose to be about. He’s been here for years and continues to disappear in big moments. As long as we have him as one of the building blocks, we will continue to live in 30-win land.

  • Feb 21, 20143:24 pm
    by Ryank


    I’d let him walk rather than give him over $10 million per season.  Use the money for a defender that’s cheaper.  Spend the money on guys who can defend and hit outside shots…let Dre work ‘em over inside…get the Moose out of his way.

  • Feb 21, 20143:28 pm
    by Andy


    Agreed Ryank. Sign him to 1 year and trade him at the draft.

    • Feb 21, 20144:08 pm
      by joey


      monroe would never sign a 1 yr deal and even if he did, the pistons couldnt trade him at the draft, theyd have to wait until december or so before being allowed to trade him…

  • Feb 21, 20143:40 pm
    by sebastian


    Okay, I thought Joe should had been at least fired along with Mo’, but he wasn’t so I said to myself … if a single trade is not made by 3:00 PM EST (2/20/14), then Joe is surely going to be fired or more delicately stated: His contract will not be renewed.
    I still don’t think that Joe’s contract will not be renewed and I believe that he was not fired along with Mo’, because of the tribute to the ’88-’89 Pistons that I’ve read is scheduled on March 28, when the Palace will be packed to see the Heat.
    Gores did not want to have fired Joe and then ask that he attend the tribute on March 28.

    • Feb 21, 20144:57 pm
      by JYD for Life


      You’re right sebastian…but it’s bigger than that.  
      All of the good teams have had success with celebrating their past and having their legends involved in some capacity.  Houston this summer (clyde, Hakeem, Dikembe and Yao helped recruit Dwight), the Lakers (West and Magic in the past – not sure what they’re doing now, but Kobe will be around after he retires), Utah (Malone & Sloan) and the list goes on.   
      We have so few of those guys with legendary status around that it would be difficult to just fire Joe, especially with his contract nearing an end.   You can’t burn that bridge, regardless of the current status of the team.  
      They’ll reach an agreement for Joe to “retire” or “look for new challenges in life” or something. 
      Also wanted to throw this in – RE:  Bill Simmons’ recent comments - 
      “Would you rather have a guy with a law degree or Joe Dumars negotiating contracts?” 
      That’s entirely off-base because until 2010, there was a guy by the name of Alan Ostfield who was the Pistons resident cap expert and contract administrator.  He was a highly educated executive who worked as Joe’s right hand guy when it came to negotiations and cap configuring.  
      I’m not sure who that person is today.  I mean really, do people think that someone with an advanced statistics degree from Harvard has superior negotiating skills is probably misguided.  

  • Feb 21, 20143:43 pm
    by oats


    I don’t entirely agree with the premise for the article. There is a third option other than be willing to max Monroe now and trading him now. There might just not have been a good trade available. Teams seemed to be pretty conservative at the deadline this year, so maybe no one was willing to execute a fair value trade for Monroe. If so, waiting until the summer when there are more teams with the flexibility to add Monroe and thus more competition for him could be beneficial. The GM at that time will also be perceived as having more job security by virtue of being the GM in the summer, so Detroit will also seem slightly less desperate to unload someone. Monroe might just have a higher trade value this summer than he does now, and if a good trade didn’t come around I have no problem with the team hoping a better one comes along later.

    • Feb 21, 20144:13 pm
      by Dan Feldman


      He’s not under contract next summer, though. It’s not as if the Pistons can just choose to trade him then, like they could have yesterday.

      • Feb 21, 20144:22 pm
        by Huddy


        I believe he means negotiating a sign and trade or trading him after signing a new contract when teams who are impressed with his skills should still be impressed with his skills.  That option actually falls under being willing to offer him max money, but would be a different direction to go than what was laid out.

      • Feb 21, 20146:49 pm
        by oats


        @ Dan. If there wasn’t a good deal available they might have decided they could get more in a sign and trade for him than what was being offered now. That could still be the plan for all we know, and it still makes more sense than trading Monroe for way too little. It also doesn’t necessarily require the team to be willing to match a max offer for Monroe, just that they posture as though they will do it.

        • Feb 21, 20148:03 pm
          by Dan Feldman


          Again, I don’t trust the Pistons to out-posture Falk. He’s really good at this.

          There’s always a chance a sign-and-trade works. It’s definitely possible.

          But banking on it is asking for trouble.

          • Feb 22, 201412:43 am
            by oats

            Does it require out posturing Falk? It’s more of out posturing the other team. I mean, if they are arranging a sign and trade that gets his client max money, can’t they just work with him? Between how desperate Detroit appears right now and how hesitant teams appear to be to move assets, I’m not certain they had a better option than hoping to do better when they try again in the summer.

          • Feb 22, 20149:35 am
            by Dan Feldman

            If Falk is on his game, he won’t be waiting around for a max offer from the Pistons that never comes. The Pistons can get leverage only if other teams sign other free agents first, leaving Monroe nowhere to sign an offer sheet.

            If the Pistons are truly willing to offer max money, Falk can wait it out and then accept that contract from Detroit.

            If the Pistons aren’t willing to offer max money and Falk knows this, he can probably persuade another team to offer a max offer sheet. Perhaps, the Pistons could wedge their way in and make a sign-and-trade work, but why would the other team go for it?

            As far as what offers the Pistons could have gotten this week, I suppose it’s possible they were all dismal. But if the Pistons don’t view Monroe as worthy of the max, their threshold for an acceptable offer should be lower than, say, what mine would have been.

  • Feb 21, 20144:27 pm
    by Andy


    Basically, we’re screwed.

  • Feb 21, 20145:08 pm
    by Parsons


    Hey if we release CV we could free up that roster spot for Ben Gordon. He was just waived today. I’m sorry but I would laugh if this happened.

  • Feb 21, 20145:19 pm
    by Bob


    Keeping Monroe will be seen as a good move in the future.

  • Feb 21, 201410:08 pm
    by James


    If the market for Al Jefferson was relatively weak last year as a free agent offensively gifted big man with limited defensive ability, what in the hell would Monroe get after getting his ass handed to him by BIG AL? Monroe is sorely OVER VALUED around here, similarly to one MR TAYSHAUN PRINCE of recent lore. If they keep him, with or without Smith, look forward to a future of futility with a fairly young Pacers frontcourt, Miami for the next 3-5 yrs if they stay together, Washington’s frontcourt, now Cleveland with Hawes and Tristan Thompson(he killed our frontcourt all year), The Bulls have a better frontcourt, Brooklyn when Lopez returns, OH, THE BOBCATS, as you can see, its dim either way.

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