Detroit Pistons’ power forward Greg Monroe is set to become a restricted free agent.
Although Pistons’ president and head coach Stan Van Gundy continues to praise Monroe and is in contact with him and his agent, many believe Monroe may be moving on.
Vincent Goodwill of The Detroit News reports that retaining Monroe is the Pistons’ top priority, but believes there are at least 10 teams could offer Monroe legitimate deals and specifically mentions the Atlanta Hawks, New Orleans Pelicans and Washington Wizards as suitors.
Teams can always use a 24-year old, high-character, unselfish big man who can score around the basket. With the cap increasing by $5 million, there’s no guarantee Monroe, who has yet to make an All-Star team, won’t receive a max offer.
A max contract for a player with zero to six years of service began at approximately four years and $62 million last season ($13.7 million in year 1, with substantial annual raises) before factoring in the cap increase.
The Atlanta Hawks, New Orleans Pelicans and Washington Wizards reportedly have interest in Monroe, and other teams could be lying in wait.
“He’s a very high priority for us,” Van Gundy said. “We have ideas on who might offer him what. Our strategy is if Greg gets a max offer, what are we gonna do? There’s only three things we can do. He can sign a qualifying offer, sign him (to a long term deal) or do a sign-and-trade.”
The Los Angeles Lakers and San Antonio Spurs are also expected to pursue Monroe.
Monroe put up 15.2 points, 9.3 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.1 steals per game while shooting 49.7% from the field and 65.7% from the free throw line last season.