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Instead of completely changing the team’s identity, Monroe should allow the Pistons to remain a half-court team. That only speeds up the rebuilding process – especially given how NBA-ready Monroe appears. With the possible exceptions of Kevin Love and Elton Brand, Monroe is the most fundamentally-sound big man out of college since Tim Duncan.
In all honesty, the pick probably doesn’t matter much. As much we were spoiled by Jonas Jerebko and Mehmet Okur, most second-rounders never make an impact. But it’s the logic – or lack thereof – behind the White pick that bothers me.
White might be the best athlete in the draft. He’s fast and can jump. He doesn’t draw a lot of fouls or pass extremely well. He’s built for the fastbreak.
So, how does he fit?
You obviously don’t cater your system to a second-round pick. But White obviously doesn’t fit with Detroit’s system.
The Pistons started the night addressing a major need and ended the night swinging for the fences with one of the best young talents in the draft.
Taking Monroe at No. 7 wasn’t the Pistons’ original hope; they wanted DeMarcus Cousins. But Monroe was the second-best big man on the board, and he brings a lot to the table. He’s the draft’s best-passing big man, he competes on the boards, and he has some sophistication to his offensive repertoire. On the other hand, he doesn’t have the elite athleticism or length the Pistons really desire.
With their second-round pick, the Pistons went the opposite direction. White isn’t as skilled or fundamentally sound as Monroe, but he is one of this draft’s best athletes and has the versatility to play both backcourt positions. If not for his off year, he would’ve been a potential lottery pick based on his physical tools, so getting him at No. 36 was a steal.
While Pistons president Joe Dumars certainly didn’t solve all the team’s problems in the draft, he did take another important rebuilding step.
Greg Monroe fell into the center-less Pistons’ lap at No. 7, and they pounced. Monroe is a terrific passer with burgeoning offensive skills and should instantly upgrade a Detroit lineup that was forced to give an aging Ben Wallace extended minutes last season. In time, Monroe could develop into a front-of-the-line starting center. Second-rounder Terrico White is a superb athlete who can play limited minutes at both guard positions. If he makes the team, White could provide added protection should the Pistons part ways with Richard Hamilton.
Dave Del Grande of CBSSports.com: A (Monroe), B (White)
A pass-first big man means even more shots for Ben Gordon. That can’t be a step in the right direction.
Nice fill-in talent if the Pistons choose to unload Tayshaun Prince and head in a new direction.
Greg Monroe is exactly the type of presence the Pistons have been lacking, capable of facilitating fluidity in a halfcourt offense. They were fortunate that the Warriors went with Ekpe Udoh, who while better defensively, isn’t as proficient a post threat. Monroe may be most ready to contribute of any of this draft’s elite bigs, giving Detroit an opportunity to bounce back quickly. Second-rounder Terrico White has the tools to play at this level if he gains consistency. Good stuff out of Joe Dumars, Scott Perry and the crew.
I’m not going to destroy the Pistons because they fell a pick short, because those lottery balls left them at seventh in what may have been a four-man draft (when the Timberwolves and Warriors are in the top five, the sixth pick in a four-man draft is a good thing to have). Monroe is a clear step down from DeMarcus Cousins, at least on paper, and the Pistons are still trying to convince Sacramento to send Cousins to Michigan. Monroe can play, though, and White’s upside is huge. Not what they wanted, but a good night out considering the pick placement.
The Pistons picked up a new starting center, Georgetown’s Greg Monroe, in the first round, and solid 20-year-old combo guard Terrico White in the second round. White might be an insurance policy for Will Bynum, who will be a restricted free agent this summer. Some question whether White can play point guard in the NBA. Lord knows that if he can’t, Monroe — the most skilled passer at center in years — can.
Greg Monroe is a good pick at No. 7, a passing big man with a good offensive game coming to a team that needed some scoring along the front line. Nothing fancy here but solid picks that help.
Depending on how serious the Kings actually were about doing business, the grade for the Greg Monroe pick fluctuates. I don’t see any situation where holding onto Prince makes sense if it meant ruining a chance for Cousins. It is something that we will never actually know and Monroe delivers something that the team doesn’t already have. He won’t be an All-Star, but if he can develop defensively to supplement what he brings in his offensive versatility will be a good first step for the Pistons.
Even though Terrico White is a redundancy with Ben Gordon and Rodney (Stuckey) on the roster, he is a great talent at 36. We also know that Dumars has a definite fetish for this type of player, which shows a little bit of (narcissism) considering the kind of player he was. White is a great athlete and has a general strong all-around game. The only thing separating White between the beginning of the second round and the top-15 is his jumper, which needs to improve for him to be anything more than instant offense off the bench.
Cheer for your team, Detroit. The Pistons land two excellent picks, one filling the team’s biggest need. Monroe should start from Day 1 in a desperately weak frontcourt. White might be the draft’s top athlete, and while he doesn’t fit a need for Detroit, at No. 36, he’s a tremendous value pick. He has the potential to be better than Rodney Stuckey, but could also play with Stuckey if and when the team lets Richard Hamilton go.
Monroe was perhaps the fifth-best prospect in the class, so the Pistons did well to land him here. His deft passing and high skill level give him a chance to be a legit star in the right system, something the Pistons desperately need. White is a solid athlete, though he duplicates much of what Rodney Stuckey already gives them.
Crunching the numbers
- A+: 1
- A: 1
- A-: 3
- B+: 4
- B: 1
A new feature on PistonPowered: polls. From time to time, I will post Pistons-related poll. The most-recent poll will also appear in the sidebar. So, here’s our first one:
If you vote for “other,” please note in the comments whom you think deserves it. Actually, even if you voted for someone on the list, please explain your choice in the comments.