All Greg Monroe needs to make a Pau Gasol-like leap is better talent surrounding him

I have zero interest in discussing another underwhelming (possible) coaching hire by the Detroit Pistons (OK, fine … here’s my only sentence of analysis I will offer … there is no difference between Maurice Cheeks and Lawrence Frank. One played the game, one didn’t. Everything else is exactly the same. Carry on with the spin-fest that this isn’t a disaster if you must.).

So in an effort to write only about things involving the team that interest me, this week’s column for the Detroit Free Press looked at what it will take for Greg Monroe to produce at the level of a big man he’s often been compared to, Pau Gasol:

In 2001, the Memphis Grizzlies were trying to figure out how to fully take advantage of the diverse skill set their young big man offered the franchise. It took more than 100 losses, a coaching change and that young big in question learning how to operate as the focal point of the offense, but at 23 years-old, Pau Gasol led the Grizzlies to a 50-win season and a playoff appearance in 2004.

Detroit Pistons big man Greg Monroe will be 23 next season.

That’s just a taste. Over the next few weeks, I’ll write similar lengthy comparisons (hopefully realistic ones) for each of the Pistons’ promising young players (no, not Rodney Stuckey, before his two fans left in the world ask if I’ll be including him).

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