Just under a year ago, the Detroit Pistons made a big splash in free agency, agreeing to a four-year, $54 million deal with former Atlanta Hawks’ forward Josh Smith. On Thursday, a report surfaced that Pistons’ restricted free agent big man Greg Monroe wouldn’t the Pistons to trade Josh Smith.
Monroe lost his place as the face of the franchise to center Andre Drummond and may now lose his money and spot with the team to Smith.
According to Vince Ellis of The Detroit Free Press, Monroe didn’t mind Drummond stealing the spotlight away from him because of his talent, but was upset about the deal they gave Smith and their reluctance to give Smith a big money deal.
After being positioned as the face of the franchise for his first two seasons, Monroe was quickly usurped by the drafting of Andre Drummond in the 2012.
Monroe’s a smart guy and he understands Drummond is special. He even suggested Drummond to the front office before the 2012 draft.
But he still expected to be rewarded with a max contract for his hard work and professionalism when his time for an extension arrived last summer.
Then they signed Smith — basically telling Monroe to chill for a bit. You can understand Monroe feeling betrayed. Smith plays the same position and took the money he feels he had been promised.
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.Smith put up 16.4 points, 6.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1.4 blocks and 1.4 steals per game while shooting 41.9% from the field, 26.4% from three and 53.2% from the charity stripe.