Greg Monroe, the new Rodney Stuckey?

Discussion in 'Pistons and NBA' started by KGREG, Feb 5, 2013.

  1. Walter

    Walter All-Star Forum Donor

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    We are an interesting bunch. For years we complained we don't have a post player and how all our bigs are in love with the mid-to-long range jumper. Now we have a guy who doesn't want to shoot and would rather play in the post, and we all want to ship him away.
  2. basketbills

    basketbills All-Star Forum Donor

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    It's all about him playing pf and meshing with Andre. Things changed.
  3. Laimbrane

    Laimbrane All-Star Forum Donor

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    In some ways Greg has regressed this season, because he reached the limit of what he could learn to do given his athletic limitations and the role he was expected to play, and teams have adjusted to where that is. Now that he's plateaued somewhat as an inside player, the book is out and teams are doubling inside, getting a body on him, making him hit tough shots. If he's got single coverage down low, or if he gets the ball at the elbow with a guy on him and nobody else down low as back-up, there's a good chance he's going to score. Teams aren't allowing that anymore, though. They're giving him space up high and collapsing quickly because they know he's not a threat from the elbow and he doesn't have the handles or court awareness down low (yet?) to either skirt or take advantage of opposing double teams.

    He's working harder offensively for less payoff, and now is where he either stagnates as a player or he reaches in other directions and improves other facets of his game. Up until now I'm sure all of his practice work and offensive gym time has been spent on dozens of post moves and other things that a center is expected to do, and his game work reflected that. Adding Drummond, though, is forcing him to adapt his game to be more well-rounded, and it's going to take some time. He has good form on that jumper - if he can even get to the point where he can hit it as consistently as Maxiell does, it will force opponents to come out to where he can drive past them, get them off-balance, force out-of-position double teams, etc. But right now they're not respecting the shot because they don't have to, and his numbers are down across the board as a result.

    The difference between Rodney and Greg is that there's nowhere Stuckey can go up - he can improve his three-point shooting, I suppose, but that's not his game. He has to develop a mid-range game with some iso moves, but he clearly doesn't want to; he's an attack dog and he's about as good as he's going to get at it. He lacks the basketball IQ and court vision to become more of a floor general and has developed his identity around being a mini-Wade. If the coaches are asking him to expand his game, he's not. The coaches are asking Greg to expand his game and he is; that's enough reason to give him the chance to improve.

    So it's not like there's nothing that Monroe can get better at, and it's not like the things he has to improve are all that difficult - shoot 200 shots from the elbow every day for the next three years. Plus he's still only 22. And if you're going to trade him, it better be for someone that you can reasonably expect to be better - 17/10 players are not easy to find.
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  4. Ernie the Slow Adult

    Ernie the Slow Adult All-Star Forum Donor

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    Or 2. With Monroe's low salary they'd need to move multiple players unless they were getting another youngster.

    This is good. We need more people who will focus on Monroe's character.
    I don't really think of him as a post player.
  5. TaS

    TaS All-Star Forum Donor

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    I'm open minded about seeing Monroe and Drummond be a successful duo for the long run, but I'm also open to the fact that we can get a lot for Monroe if we shop him... possibly a better player and/or better fit. i.e. he shouldn't be a sacred cow. Drummond should be and he's the only one IMO until he proves otherwise.

    Cousins has his issues, and not just in attitude. His overall FG% efficiency is below Monroe's, despite his ability to shoot the ball outside the paint and his more athletic ability in the paint. If Joe pulled the trigger on that trade, I'd be worried, but also curious to see how it would go.

    Here's an interesting thing about Monroe. Keep in mind that this is on a per 36 min basis, so any changes are meaningful, not driven by PT.

    Year: ast/ tov/ FG%/ Orating
    2011: 1.7/ 1.3/ .551/ 120
    2012: 2.6/ 2.8/ .521/ 110
    2013: 3.5/ 3.3/ .486/ 103

    I would argue that all of these trends are purely driven by touches/ usage. The more the offense goes through him, the more he passes, dribbles, and attempts shots. His assist rate goes up, his turnover rate goes right up with it pretty much dollar for dollar, and his FG% goes down as he forces more attempts.

    Greg is responsible for about 30% of the team's turnovers and only about 16% of the assists. 30% of the team's turnovers is way too high for a center/ PF.

    He has 53 more FGA's than any other player on the team, despite his .486 eFG.

    So, overall, I'm worried about his efficiency as a focal point of the offense. If we improve our guards, it may make his passing skill set (even if it improves) less valuable.

    But man would I not do a thing until I saw 30+ games with him starting next to Drummond with Calderon running the offense. I have very little idea if this combo works or not, except that there was some evidence that the team rebounds better than anyone else in the league when they are paired.
  6. copper

    copper Bench Warmer

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    I like Moose, but if he was working solely on his post game for the past offseasons like someone aid? We're in trouble because I havent seen evidence that would support a growing post arsenal. Moose has 2 moves
    #1 Drop his shoulder and dribble left and force a shot running across the middle of the lane. #2 which he has used 2 times this year that I can recall, drop step and score on the spin. which is a very nice move.
    Thats it as far as I can tell, and if thats the fruit of his off season training? he is at his peak and we need to move him. He is a piece like many have said here, he is not a player I have confidence in any more. every time he touches the ball I am expecting a turnover, or a forced shot. Maybe he just needs the ball to be in someone elses hands and not be the fascilitator we thought he would be. Heck, Drum has shown better passing this season. and thats not me sayin Drum should be a fascilitator, thats merely a observation.
    If Joe can get a Better pf I would say trade ie Lamarcus A. If he can only get Cousins? thats a risky move with DCs mental issues.
    Best thing to do would be to see he and Drum with Calderon for extended time and reassess after the season.
  7. The Panda

    The Panda All-Star Forum Donor

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    The deal would have to be phenomenal for me to agree with moving Monroe.
  8. Walter

    Walter All-Star Forum Donor

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    Please elaborate.

    He is most effective when he's in the paint. Granted he's not flashy, but he gets the job done down low regularly. His post game is the least of his problems.
  9. Walter

    Walter All-Star Forum Donor

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    FWIW, Monroe has outplayed Cousins pretty much every single time they met on the court. He's 5-1 against Cousins.
  10. TaS

    TaS All-Star Forum Donor

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    It's his losing the ball on drives and post moves that is the worst part about it. I agree that he's getting it done in the post though, due to smart use of the rim to shield shot blockers and just flat out good touch from close range. He's been able to use his right hand to finish with decent success too.
  11. Laimbrane

    Laimbrane All-Star Forum Donor

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    One game, this year:
    0m4s: lefty hook across the lane
    0m16s: spin move, right hook
    1m2s: drive left, spin right, lay-up
    1m14s: jab step, jumper off glass (not technically a post move, but sets up others and one I'd like to see him use more of)
    1m22s: drive left, spin left, fake, lefty lay-up
    1m45s: drive curl right, up and under reverse lay-up
    2m05s: from the elbow, drive left to the hole, get positioning on Amir, lay-up (this is the no-help-defender situation I'm talking about)
    2m24s: in the lane, slide right, spin, fake right, lefty hook

    Now, this is all one game, but I don't see a repeat move in there at all, and excluding that 1:14 jumper, that's 14 points off of simply his isolation-in-the-paint game (and did not include a few free throws which may well have been the result of hacked post moves). In all fairness, Toronto is not a slick defensive team, but it is an example of what he's capable of. Note that he hit a few jumpers in that game as well (0:34, 1:14, 2:15) because of exactly what I'm saying here - Valanciunas backed off him all three times and dared him to shoot, and he dropped three easy buckets on those. Notice the effect that 1:14 had on 1:20 - Valanciunas played him closer, and Monroe was able to drive in on him, get that extra step, and take advantage of his positioning even through the double-team.

    Monroe is a good post-player, but his lack of elite athleticism means that he needs to be heady about it. Part of that post-maturation process is developing himself into a mid-range threat, because it opens things up for him down low. He's clearly not comfortable with that shot, but if/when he ever develops that into a consistent part of his game, look out. I think his value can and will get higher, and I think the best that the Pistons are going to get out of him is someone past their prime and/or a draft pick, both of which have less upside.
    Walter likes this.
  12. Ernie the Slow Adult

    Ernie the Slow Adult All-Star Forum Donor

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    Being effective in the paint is different from playing in the post to me. Monroe doesn't put his back into someone and call for the ball.

    He certainly scores from in close, but so does (did at least) Tony Parker.
  13. Laimbrane

    Laimbrane All-Star Forum Donor

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    You can add that lack of handle to his tendency to miss lay-ups. I like to think that this will come with increased strength, though I admit that it may always be an issue with him. Either way, giving himself more options can only help his game.
  14. Ernie the Slow Adult

    Ernie the Slow Adult All-Star Forum Donor

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    Can Monroe ever be as good as J Noah? He wasn't great out of the gate, but he's been playing at a high level since '08 at least. How long did it take him?
  15. Laimbrane

    Laimbrane All-Star Forum Donor

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    He does... see the linked video two posts up.

    Also, I'd like to point out that he did this:



    I want a guy like that on my team.
  16. copper

    copper Bench Warmer

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    Yes I remember that game..he looked aggressive and really played well. That is what you would call the exception that proves the rule..lol...obviously I was exagerating his only 2 moves..what I was getting at was that his arsenal consists of him driving or forcing to the left and trying to get past his man on the face up. This requires him to be away from tha basket and his man up on him, which a young inexperienced Jonas was. In more rec3ent games against better defenders the defender drops off because as you see in your recap...it doesnt show a jumper from anywhere near foul line extended. I dont like the steady diet of drives because this isnt going to mesh with Drummond in the game...so the only option would be to have Drum stay on the bench as Moose' sub.

    Its also funny you choose the game where he had 35 pts to make your assessment...lol
  17. Ernie the Slow Adult

    Ernie the Slow Adult All-Star Forum Donor

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    I saw he was posting some, but to me his move is to catch it with a little space between he and his defender so he can face him. I just don't think of him carving out space and throwing his hand up for the ball where the D has to come and double is what I meant.

    Monroe is just their best chance to re-shuffle the deck because of his value. He's a cheap, young big man with good stats who isn't an addict of some sort. The Pistons don't even need to bad mouth on his way out the door because they have Drummond.
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  18. Laimbrane

    Laimbrane All-Star Forum Donor

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    I chose that game primarily because I'm lazy and it's one of the first ones that came up on the "Greg Monroe" Youtube search, but it also shows what he's capable of in retort to the post that said he had 2 post moves.

    Is he a premier post player right now? Of course not - Toronto has a pretty subpar interior defense. What I do see, however, is that he's developing. Unlike Stuckey, who hasn't added anything to his game since he's been here, Monroe is trying things that he hasn't done before. His turnovers are up and his shooting percentage is down, in my estimation, because he's doing things that he's not good at yet. I think if he gets physically stronger he'll stop missing those contested lay-ups. The coaches need to work with him on ball control on those drives, but that's doable.

    Will he get good? That's (literally) the million dollar question, and yes, Ernie is right in that his value may never be higher. If the Pistons can get value back for him (such as a 20/10 player), then yes, they should trade him. But who's going to trade away a 20/10 player? Nobody, unless you're willing to take back a guy with attitude problems (not a great idea) or are willing to gamble that one of the guys near the top of this draft is going to be that guy.

    And what about Drummond? We're all putting a lot of stock into him getting better, but his improvement depends on actually developing an entire offensive arsenal, on developing shooting touch and offensive moves. He's more athletically gifted, but he's unarguably much less skilled than Monroe. He can't shoot free throws, doesn't hit jumpers, has no post game at all, and makes bad defensive mistakes. Yes, he has a significant degree of upside, but I would argue that those skills that he needs to develop are much more difficult than the ones the Pistons need Monroe to develop. Until then he's a guy that blocks shots and gets rebounds on one end, and dunks a bunch on the other end, so long as opponents don't foul him. That's great and exciting to watch, but if he's truly going to be the franchise cornerstone, the team either needs more from him or they need to build around his strengths with guys that don't magnify his limitations. I see him as capable of being a Ben Wallace type of player - perhaps less intimidating defensively but more capable offensively (Tyson Chandler is probably a better example). You can use a guy like that on your team, but you still need players that can score. Monroe can score. He doesn't do it flawlessly yet, but it's clear that he's improving, even as the league adjusts to him. Get guys on the wing that can shoot threes (Stuckey standing down in the corner is pretty much useless), put Drummond running the baseline, improve his mid-range shooting to near 60%, and all of the sudden Monroe's arsenal improves from:
    "1) drive, spin, hook; 2) drive, spin, lose ball..."
    to
    "1)drive-spin-hook; 2) step back, shoot; 3) drive, draw double-team, oop-to-Dre; 4) drive, draw double-team, dish to Singler/Knight"

    Are these impossible requests? No, I don't think they are. Are they definite? No - he could plateau, get a $10 million contract, and forever cripple the Pistons' cap number. But you don't panic, not now. You put the team together and give them some time to gel. Rome wasn't built in a day and neither are championship teams - not even the Miami Heat. Give Monroe and Drummond the chance to figure out how to play together. The team will be kicking itself forever if Monroe continues to gel, some other team wins a championship with him, and Shabazz Muhammad leaves for LA after his rookie contract expires.
  19. KGREG

    KGREG All-Star

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    Greg Monroe's back to the basket post game is pretty bad. But in all fairness so is everybody else's in the NBA these days. I don't think he's a scrub, but like I said earlier, i hav grown tired of WAITING for guys to get better as opposed to WATCHING them get better, now if we get studs at the 1,2 and 3, then maybe he's a keeper, I just think that Greg's optimal value lies in us trading him.
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  20. KGREG

    KGREG All-Star

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    I hear you, and you are 100% correct, but in most cases guys' game develop in year 3, which is where we're at. If a player doesn't show and prove in year 3, the league pretty much determines your role.

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