|Of Detroit's top players (Greg Monroe, Andre Drummond, Brandon Jennings, and Josh Smith), Monroe (above) is the longest-tenured and most likely to be dealt|
It is pretty fair to say the Detroit Pistons have had about as eventful a week as a NBA team can have. It started with back-to-back losses against the Florida teams (Heat and Magic). Then, the Pistons blew out the Nets and Nuggets at home. Surprisingly, on a winning roll, Detroit then fired Maurice Cheeks, its head coach, finishing up with a win over the Spurs on Monday in Detroit.
One week, two coaches, two losses, and three wins. Boy, do I feel bad for Pistons fans.
Now, though, Detroit has to decide whether or not to move its starting center Greg Monroe at this February's trade deadline. Reports are saying that it is unlikely, yet possible, that the former 1st-round pick is traded in a little over a week as he is a restricted free agent this summer and certainly could help a frontcourt-challenged franchise.
It appears the Pistons would only trade Monroe, only 23 years of age, in a blockbuster deal that would return significant assets in form of talent or draft picks to Detroit.
The 2013-14 season has been a disappointing one for the Pistons, who picked up Josh Smith and Brandon Jennings in the offseason only to see both having subpar campaigns.
With the huge, and unsavory, contracts those two are signed to, it is unlikely any other team would be willing to pick them up in a trade. Andre Drummond, meanwhile, is still on his very cap-friendly rookie deal, which is one Detroit does not want to give up for anyone short of Kevin Durant or LeBron James.
That leaves Monroe as the odd man out.
However, with the Pistons playing better basketball as of late, general manager Joe Dumars might decide to keep the team's nucleus intact and hope that Monroe re-signs this summer when he hits restricted free agency. If he does, and can find a worthwhile head coach to corral this squad into a winning one, then he might have a legitimate contender to work with. The risk, though, is that Monroe signs elsewhere, leaving Detroit without a true center.
Those options are what Dumars has to weigh when he determines whether to part with the Georgetown product or not. It's certainly not an easy choice to make, but that's why front office executives make the big bucks, deservedly or not.