First things first, tonight’s game against the Hawks in Atlanta has been cancelled due to poor travel conditions. Keith Langlois tweeted out Feb. 28th as a potential make-up date, so keep an eye on that.
According to a post from Hoops Rumors, via Marc Stein , the Pistons are turning away GMs who call about Greg Monroe. Monroe’s status as a Restricted Free Agent this summer has fueled speculation that he might be dealt in order to move Josh Smith to PF, his natural position. Monroe’s value is much higher than Smith’s in a trade, and he may have netted a 1st round pick and a perimeter threat to play SF. Even if Monroe remains in Detroit through the deadline, the Pistons (hopefully under the direction of a new GM) can still move Monroe in a sign-and-trade. However, for now it appears that Joe Dumars is standing pat with the frontcourt trio that is most certainly not working.
Up to this point in the season, I have given Mo Cheeks a bit of a pass. Part of his struggle has pertained to attempting to force the squarest of pegs into the roundest of holes. To a certain extent, he’s doomed to failure by the players at his disposal. That being said, my mindset changed last night with one tweet. According to Noah Trister (@noahtrister), the Pistons would be 24-21 this season if games ended after three quarters. That record would put the Pistons 1/2 games ahead of the Hawks and Raptors for the third best record in the Eastern Conference. That stat seems to imply that Cheeks is doing a poor job of managing the rotation and situations. Are the Pistons falling apart in the 4th because players are too tired? Is he getting out-coached by his peers who put out a more effective lineup? These are questions that need answers, and soon, if the Pistons still plan on making a playoff run.