Many believe the biggest reason Detroit Pistons’ restricted free agent power forward Greg Monroe remains a free agent is because of money. Monroe has denied reports that he turned down a five-year, $60 million deal. Monroe reportedly never pursued offer sheets, knowing the Pistons would likely match the offer and retain him, even though the potential to land a huge contract was there.
Michael Lee of The Washington Post explains Monroe isn’t being motivated by money at the moment – he is being motivated by his desire to leave Detroit.
As the only power forward in the Eastern Conference to average at least 15 points and nine rebounds last season, Monroe certainly could have commanded more on the open market; his current salary cap hold with the Pistons is $10.2 million. But his motivation has been moving on, not the money. The money lost to Monroe in the interim is the cost of his freedom, and his desire to leave Detroit makes the price tag palatable.
His frustrations with the Pistons are understandable since he is about to have his fifth coach in five years with incoming coach Stan Van Gundy (who will also serve as team president) and Detroit is no closer to being a playoff team than it was when he arrived.
Last season, 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. In his career, he’s averaged 14.0 points, 9.0 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.2 steals per game while shooting 50.8% from the floor and 67.8% from the charity stripe.
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