When the Detroit Pistons traded for Monte Morris, they hoped they were getting a veteran who could help their shooting and stabilize their core of young guards.
But Morris has yet to play for the Pistons, something he says will change soon. In a recent social media post, Morris said "See ya'll this month" with the lock emoji, indicating that he will return sometime in January.
It's not like Morris is suddenly going to turn the Detroit Pistons into a contender, or even a mediocre team, but his return will have implications for them in the present and future.
Monte Morris in the Detroit Pistons' rotation
The Pistons' young guards have ranged from great to terrible to everything in between this season, as all of them have struggled at times, whether it's turnovers or inability to hit a shot.
Morris will help with both of those things, as he is a career 39.2 percent 3-point shooter and doesn't turn the ball over. The spacing should be better with him in the lineup and he gives the Pistons more options to use Cade Cunningham off the ball with the bench unit.
His return hopefully means the end of Killian Hayes' time in Detroit. No offense to Killian, but he just hasn't progressed enough to see him as part of the future. I wanted it to happen, but Hayes is still arguably the worst shooter in the NBA. In the last game against the Wizards, he airballed a five-foot floater. Morris will hopefully put an end to having to watch plays like this:
The Detroit Pistons may want to re-sign Monte Morris
Even though this season hasn't turned out the way Morris and the Pistons wanted it to, that doesn't mean he won't be part of the future. Detroit will still need a veteran backup point guard with Monte's skillset in the future, and Morris is a Michigan native who wants to play in Detroit.
There may be mutual interest in a new contract, so getting Morris back in January would potentially give the Pistons half a season to see how he fits with the rest of their roster, specifically Cade Cunningham and Jaden Ivey.
Monte Morris could be trade bait
As an established player with a known set of skills, Morris could be coveted by contending teams at the deadline.
Every team is looking for more shooting and defense and Morris can provide both off the bench. Getting him back before the trade deadline means he'll not only be auditioning for the Pistons but for all of the playoff hopefuls who want to bolster their rosters for a run.
Morris's return is not going to change the trajectory of this season much, but it still matters to the present as well as the future.