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Grizzlies owner: “We’re not looking to trade Rudy Gay”

Jun 8, 2012, 1:51 PM EDT

Grizzlies Basketball AP

There have been more Rudy Gay trade rumors floating around than Charlie Sheen rumors.

Gay is in the middle of a max deal that will pay him $16.5 million next season and while he is a good player he is not worth that much. The Grizzlies are already paying Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol big bucks and they are going to have to pony up for O.J. Mayo if they want to keep him. So, moving Gay becomes a hot rumor and finding trades for him a favorite past time of Grizzlies fans.

But don’t bother, Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley told the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

“We’re not looking to trade Rudy Gay,” Heisley said. “We’re not shopping him around. Period. Do we sit around and say ‘What if we traded Rudy, who could we get?’ No. Right now, Rudy is part of the future of this team….

“Our plan was always to protect the core. I’ve the core for four years,” Heisley said. “If we ever decide to do something it won’t be because of salary. We’re going to build a team around this core group. We understand Rudy’s salary. We understood it when we gave it to him. We’re not looking to cut salary. We’re looking to try and win a championship.”

Now, if I were shopping Rudy Gay, this is exactly what I’d say to the press. But I tend to believe Heisley when he says he is not looking to break up the core.

That does not mean Gay is safe — if someone comes to Memphis with a deal too good to pass then he will be traded. But if you play the semantics game that is not shopping him.

The challenge for Memphis is they are a good young team in the West, but the Thunder are younger and better. Then there is the up-and-coming Clippers who may already be better, and Memphis doesn’t have a lot of cap room to just add players. Let’s just say the road to that title is not an easy one from Memphis.

  1. lmoneyfresh - Jun 8, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    I wouldn’t mind seeing the Bulls try to swing a trade for Gay. Biggest piece would likely be Deng. It would be a loss on the defensive side of the ball, but the bulls need more offensive help on the wings than anything and Gay could do that.

  2. 00maltliquor - Jun 8, 2012 at 4:15 PM

    As they shouldn’t. They should not get rid of any of their core group, namely Gay, Randolph and Gasol. And I don’t think Memphis is worrying about “ponying up” for Mayo (although they should, but just not toooo much…), they’ve been activly trying to trade him the last two years for practically nothing in return. They’ve got a real nice group that can be very good and go far into the playoffs with hard work and teamwork and putting in years with that group together a la the Spurs, but you can’t win it all or advance deep into the playoffs every year and some GM’s need to understand that.

    There are some monsterous teams in the west, but patience is a virtue. They got the pieces, just need a deeper bench and maybe one year they luck into a really really good gaurd in the draft to propel them to the next level. This year the Clippers were just a deeper team. Hell, it went all 7, no need to prematurely blow it up.

    Every year great players on great teams get injured (Derrick Rose), lose chemistry and straight up implode (Trailblazers), get older and just can’t keep up (LAKERS), make hasty trades with one of their teams main core players and get worse (Celtics trading Kendrick Perkins last year), but if you keep patient and build up the core group, with the same coach for years one year they can capitalize on all those variables.

  3. going4iton4th - Jun 8, 2012 at 5:22 PM

    I understand the logic of trading Rudy Gay—the team made it farther in the 2011 playoffs with no Rudy Gay than in the 2012 playoffs. If you look at his 2012 regular season stats versus playoffs he averages pretty much the same across the board in scoring, rebounds, etc. Gay’s a good player but the question is he great? It’s up to him to answer that next year. If I were Chris Wallace or Heisley and some team bowled me over with a trade request you do it (it would have to be a game changing player in exchange) but who would do that? The team just needs a few tweaks and elevated play from Rudy and they could be in the Title mix!

    • ravenscaps48 - Jun 8, 2012 at 7:55 PM

      I went to school when Rudy was there…. He was a Senior and I was a 8th Grader, but nontheless, I kinda got tired of him putting up 50+ against other MD Catholic Schools… Hahaha. Archbishop Spalding All Day!!!

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