Greg Monroe was at his very best Friday night. So were the Detroit Pistons.
Monroe scored 26 points and brought down 14 rebounds in a masterful performance in a 103-87 Pistons NBA victory at the Milwaukee Bucks. It was the type of performance Monroe needs to keep delivering for his team. He was a solid 11-of-19 from the floor.
“Greg had a good game to start,” said Detroit coach Lawrence Frank. “We established Greg right from the beginning. He was very good, and not just only scoring but also his ability to make plays for others. Greg forced Milwaukee to go through a bunch of bigs tonight. It was a heck of a job. Because we are getting stops, we weren’t playing in traffic… I thought we had a very good pace and rhythm tonight.”
Milwaukee Bucks coach Jim Boylan was frustrated in trying to find an answer to Monroe and the Pistons. He didn’t find one.
“Greg Monroe’s got a big, thick body. He’s left-handed, which can give guys a little bit of trouble,” Boylan said. “ Combining him and (Jason) Maxiell, you’ve got two guys putting a lot of pressure on us, and if you look at our starting front line, Larry (Sanders) is not a thick guy, (Ersan Ilyasova) is not a thick guy. In today’s NBA, you don’t find a lot of frontcourts like that.”
Monroe is the anchor of a starting lineup finally getting its due.
“I thought everyone was exceptional tonight. So much of the focus recently has been on the bench,” Frank said. “We need all 15 guys on a roster to contribute. Tonight, I really thought our starters stepped up, set the tone, and really were the reason why the game turned.”