The addition of two players standing higher than 7 feet, the Detroit Pistons may be getting a little clogged down in the paint, and recent NBA Rumors suggest Greg Monroe may be the odd man out.
Not that this is a bad thing.
With the projected #2 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft falling to the Pistons in the 9th spot, Detroit secured the raw talent of 19 year old, Andre Drummond, and then just a few weeks later, added Ukrainian big man, Vyacheslav Kravtsov to their line up. Neither 7-footer has been NBA tested yet, but if they prove able to carry their weight, Coach Lawrence Frank would have the freedom to move Monroe to the four spot.
At 6’11, 250, Monroe would have the perfect size to play the power forward position, and although he has only played center in the NBA, he feels the transition would be smooth:
“I’ve been playing power forward and center all my life, so I’m comfortable with playing either.”
For his part, the emerging star has already begun training, realizing the need to be at the top of his game in the NBA and points to his defensive footwork as a possible liability.
“I would have to scout more, learn the guys’ tendencies. It would be different footwork, moving your feet more.”
Monroe averaged under a block a game last season, but the stat alone does not give an accurate representation of his defensive prowess. To hear him focusing on his strengths as though they were weakness shows exactly what type of competitor the 3rd year player is.
Averaging 12 plus points and over 8 rebounds a game last season, Monroe has established himself as a rising star, and a move to the forward position could push him in to the upper echelon of NBA talent. His height and weight are nearly identical to Dwight Howard’s, with an even longer wingspan, and much better ball handling skills. He has 30 pounds on Kevin Garnett with a similar killer instinct and he plays in the paint the way we all thought Elton Brand would when he entered the pros.
Charlie Villanueva, Jonas Jerebko, and Kyle Singler all are listed by the Pistons as power forwards, so even if this switch does occur, Franks will still have to be creative with his rotation.
I wouldn’t be surprised if Monroe plays both positions over the course of the season, and you shouldn’t be surprised if he is dominant at both.
Jeff Everette is a featured columnist for RantSports.com, covering the NFL and NBA. You can follow him on twitter @jeverettesports, or subscribe to Jeff Everette-RantSports.com on both Facebook and Google+ for all of his latest articles, opinions, and rants.
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