Greg Monroe has reportedly all-but secured a move to the New York Knicks this summer which will end his stay with the Detroit Pistons.
Monroe signs Pistons qualifying offer: Detroit big man could stick around.
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Lakers free agency 2015 options: Monroe will be a target this summer.
After talks of moving elsewhere and a long-term deal with the Pistons both broke down, Monroe signed a qualifying offer last summer to stay in Detroit for a year only to become a free agent this summer.
While it looks likely that he will leave at the end of the season, the Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers have been linked with an interest but it appears that the latter are set to miss out.
Given that neither party is allowed to agree to a deal yet, the situation could still change with interest around the league, but according to a new report the Knicks are on the verge of signing the Pistons big man.
“Maybe the worst kept secret in the NBA is that Phil Jackson plans to pursue Detroit Pistons forward Greg Monroe in free agency this summer. In fact, one league executive called it “about as close to a done deal as you can get,” the New York Daily News reports.
Any such deal already being in place would be illegal under NBA regulations, and so there will be no written agreement between Monroe and the Knicks until he enters the free agency market this summer.
The likely situation is that representatives have discussed the situation, and they will then continue negotiations after July 1 to put in place an official contract.
Monroe has career-best averages of 16.1 points and 10.5 rebounds for the Pistons this season, and should he move to the Knicks it would create an interesting situation in the NBA Draft 2015.
The Knicks are expected to land a top Draft pick and go with a big man in the shape of either Karl-Anthony Towns or Jahlil Okafor, but the signing of Monroe would undoubtedly have an effect on their strategy as he will give them a better chance of competing immediately.
Team president Phil Jackson will need to find the balance between acquiring young talent and having proven individuals on the roster, and this may well be the first difficult decision to be made.