If there's a silver lining in this puffy nimbus cloud of suck-season, it's rookie Greg Monroe. Monroe is growing up before our very eyes and developing himself quite a case to be a starter or to at least see starter type minutes.
As we all know, Monroe picked up his third straight double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds on Monday night against the Bulls. Dan Feldman at PistonPowered had a few quality paragraphs on the Moose that I thought were worth noting:
His double-double should encourage doubters, if any remain. Monroe became the first Pistons rookie since at least 1986-87 (as far back as Basketball-Reference’s streak finder goes) to record three straight point-rebound double-doubles.
Monroe still needs work to catch Jason Maxiell’s five straight point-rebound double-doubles last March, but the young center has a a shot at that mark.
"Monroe’s double-double lone bright spot in Pistons loss" stories are becoming a little tired, but at least there’s something positive to write. When his streak ends, then what?
Monroe still has a way to go before he reaches the expectations that come with a top ten pick, but I'd say he's well on his way. Right now, through 35 games, 20-year-old Monroe's stats line up evenly with 22-year-old Jonas Jerebko's average numbers from last year, and Monroe's seeing about eight less minutes.
When Monroe has seen 30-plus minutes this year, he's averaging 12.6 points on 24-45 shooting (53%), 1.8 steals and 11.6 rebounds per game, and has collected (all) three of his double-doubles. Of course, he's only seen those kind of minutes five times.*
*He played 29:43 in one of those five games, but I took the liberty to round up.
So, the next time the Pistons decide to get really rowdy and drop a meager 27 points in the second half of a game, maybe Monroe can continue to provide us some much needed solace.