As soon as former Miami Heat and Orlando Magic head coach Stan Van Gundy was named head coach and president of the Detroit Pistons, he has been pestered about the future of big man Greg Monroe. Monroe is currently a restricted free agent.
Many believed Van Gundy would opt to part ways with Monroe because he surrounded center Dwight Howard with three-point shooters in Orlando and would potentially like to do the same with center Andre Drummond in Detroit. Even if Van Gundy plans to play both Drummond and Monroe together, forward Josh Smith has proved to be a poor fit at small forward and is better suited as a power forward.
Since he got the job, Van Gundy has continued to praise Monroe.
Still, the Pistons have at least thought about dealing Monroe in a sign-and-trade and according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com, the Trail Blazers and Pistons discussed a deal that would send Monroe to Portland but the Blazers have backed off since signing Los Angeles Lakers’ free agent center Chris Kaman.
Sources said the Pistons also seriously discussed various sign-and-trade scenarios this month that would have landed restricted free agent Greg Monroe in Portland, but the Blazers ultimately pulled themselves out of the race for Monroe by signing free-agent big man Chris Kaman to join Robin Lopez in the Blazers’ center rotation.
The Pistons are reportedly working on a deal that would send Smith to the Sacramento Kings, which would likely pave the way for them to retain 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.