Restricted free agent forward/center Greg Monroe has agreed to accept the Detroit Pistons qualifying offer, and will play for Detroit next season, per a report from USA Today. Monroe was unable to come to terms on a long term extension with the Pistons, and chose not to sign a lucrative offer sheet from another team this summer that Detroit would have had the option to match.
Accepting the Pistons qualifying offer will pay Monroe $5.47 million next season and will allow Monroe to be an unrestricted free agent in 2015, where he will be one of the top free agents on the market — if he produces and remains healthy. Also, the Piston can not trade Monroe without his consent once he puts ink to paper on the contract.
Monroe — now 24 — has been productive and durable in his four years with the Pistons to date. Monroe has only missed 3 games and has averaged 14 points and 9 rebounds per game since being drafted 7th overall by Detroit in 2010. Last season, the 6-11 skilled big man averaged 15.2 points, 9.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists.
While Monroe is a skilled offensive player, his defense and lack of foot speed leaves something to be desired. He isn’t much of a shot blocker nor mobile enough to stay with quicker the power forwards of today’s NBA game.
If Monroe can remain healthy and productive, he’ll almost certainly command a near-max salary contract next summer when the salary cap may be a tad bit higher. Monroe is gambling on himself this season, but the move may prove to be rewarding if everything goes according to plan.
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