Greg Monroe, the Milwaukee Bucks‘ talented center, has been the subject of NBA trade rumors all summer. So far, none of the teams who have tried to acquire Monroe have been successful, but two teams have emerged as the leading contenders to land the Bucks’ big man.
According to the Morning Ledger, the New York Knicks and San Antonio Spurs are competing for Greg Monroe’s services. The Knicks have had an outstanding off-season so far, remaking their lineup by adding NBA All-Stars Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah to the fold. It is clear that New York is still looking to upgrade the roster, and Greg Monroe would be a welcome addition to the Knicks’ front line.
Monroe is an excellent low-post player, something that is hard to find these days with so many big men playing on the perimeter. Monroe would likely come off the bench for New York, but would play significant minutes for the Knicks as their featured inside threat and second unit anchor.
The Spurs have a large hole to fill after the retirement of future Hall of Famer Tim Duncan. Boris Diaw was dealt to the Utah Jazz earlier this month, and David West opted out of his contract and signed with Golden State, so there is little depth on the front line, even after the team signed Pau Gasol as a free agent. Greg Monroe would fit in very well in San Antonio, and the club could use a productive player with Monroe’s skill set to help rebuild their frontcourt.
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The Milwaukee Bucks signed Greg Monroe to a three-year, $50 million contract a year ago, but Monroe’s style of play did not mesh well with the Bucks, as reported by isportsweb. The team was unable to push the tempo with the slow-footed Monroe in the lineup. Even though Monroe had a good year statistically, Milwaukee feels they would be better served trading Monroe if a solid offer is made for the six-foot-eleven, 265-pound center.
Greg Monroe comes from a long line of star centers from Georgetown University, a stellar list that includes Patrick Ewing, Dikembe Mutombo, and Alonzo Mourning. The Detroit Pistons chose Monroe with the 7th overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, and he has generally met the lofty expectations that come along with being a high first-round NBA draft pick.
In 2014-15, Monroe averaged a double-double during his last season in Detroit, tallying 15.9 points and 10.2 rebounds in 69 games. After signing with Milwaukee last year, Monroe remained productive, posting per-game averages of 15.3 points and 8.8 rebounds as the Bucks’ starting center. Despite the impressive numbers, it appears that Monroe may be wearing a different team’s jersey next season. His old-school post game simply doesn’t fit the “pace and space” approach many teams are utilizing in today’s NBA.
Greg Monroe is a talented, durable, and productive player, but his traditional center skills are not currently in vogue in the NBA. The Knicks and the Spurs appear to be two teams who could utilize Monroe’s low-post prowess, and NBA trade rumors indicate that the two teams are bidding for a shot to acquire the Bucks’ frontcourt star.
Which of these teams do you think will be able to offer enough to close a deal for Greg Monroe? Or, do you think he’ll end up somewhere else next season?
[Photo by Aaron Gash/AP Images]