NBA Trade Rumors: Greg Monroe To Nets, Brook Lopez To Bucks
NBA trade rumors have been rampant that Milwaukee Bucks power forward/center Greg Monroe will be dealt this summer. So far, Monroe is still in Milwaukee, but the latest talk is that he may soon be headed east.
According to iSports Times, the Bucks are discussing a trade with the Brooklyn Nets that would send Monroe to Brooklyn in exchange for Nets center Brook Lopez. As mentioned, Monroe has been on the trading block for some time, and this is also not the first time Lopez has been mentioned in the off-season rumor mill.
Milwaukee is interested in trading Monroe because they would like to get out from under the $35 million he is owed over the next two years. The team would like to play smaller and faster, a style made popular in recent years by the Golden State Warriors. Monroe is a poor fit for that type of offense, so they are hoping to move him and hand the starting center job to the younger and more athletic Miles Plumlee.
There would appear to be two primary reasons that the Nets might want to unload Brook Lopez. Like Monroe, Lopez’s contract is bloated (there are two years and $43.7 million remaining on the three-year deal he signed in 2015). Also, SB Nation details that Lopez has missed more than two full seasons (primarily due to foot injuries) during his eight years in the NBA, so Brooklyn is growing weary of paying top-dollar for a center who misses that many games.
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It has been established that both teams have legitimate reasons to trade their high-priced big men, but what is harder to see is why they would do this deal with each other. Brook Lopez is a slow, post-up center who is arguably a worse fit in Milwaukee’s planned up-tempo offense than Monroe is. Lopez is a very good offensive player, but he needs the team to slow down and feed him in the post for his offensive game to be effective — which is not something the Bucks are likely to do.
Greg Monroe is a little more athletic and versatile, but in most ways is very similar to Lopez. As their roster is currently constructed Brooklyn is very thin at the center position, so if this trade were to happen, they would plug Monroe into Lopez’s former role as the starting center. The team would get a bit younger and save some cap space by making this trade, but the overall advantages to dealing Lopez for Monroe would seem to be negligible for the Nets.
Further comparison of these two big men shows that Brook Lopez is the more polished offensive player and shot-blocker, while Monroe is a better rebounder and passer. Defensively, these two are pretty comparable on the whole. In summary, this potential trade makes little sense for the Nets, and even less for the Bucks. Both teams would like to ship out their respective centers, but doing so for a similar player with a similar contract doesn’t seem like the prudent move in this scenario.
Brook Lopez entered the NBA as the No. 10 pick in the 2008 NBA Draft. He has career averages of 18.3 points and 7.4 rebounds per game over eight seasons. Lopez has made one NBA All-Star appearance, which came in 2013.
— Zesty NBA Nets (@zesty_nets) August 25, 2016
Greg Monroe is one of a long line of quality big men to come out of Georgetown University. Over the course of six NBA seasons with Detroit and Milwaukee, Monroe has posted per-game averages of 14.5 points and 9.1 rebounds.
The latest NBA trade rumors are pointing toward a possible deal involving Brook Lopez moving from the Nets to the Bucks for Greg Monroe. However, any advantage these teams would gain by pulling the trigger on this proposal would appear to be minimal, at best.
[Photo by Duane Burleson/AP Images]