Feb 8, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT
With Marc Gasol back in the line-up and great fit on the perimeter in Courtney Lee, the Memphis Grizzlies look like a threat in the West again. They can defend with the best in the league, the question has always been if they can generate enough offense come the postseason.
They are looking around at the trade deadline for someone who can help them do that.
Which means you can forget about them shipping out Zach Randolph — who can opt out and be a free agent this summer — rather the Grizzlies are looking to be buyers not sellers at the deadline, reports Sam Amick at USA Today.
The Grizzlies aren’t necessarily among the more active teams, but they are known to be perusing their rivals’ rosters in search of an upgrade at the small forward spot. Veteran Tayshaun Prince is having the worst of his 12 seasons as a starter, averaging just 6.0 points (38% shooting overall, 29.5% from three-point range), 3.0 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 26.7 minutes a game….
Forward and possible free agent-to-be Zach Randolph has yet to say whether he plans to opt out this summer but has made it widely known that he wants to return. In turn, it appears the Grizzlies have no plans of trading him.
The Suns were reportedly interested in Randolph, who has a $16.9 million option for next season, but the Grizzlies are wisely going to stick with the guys they have. They made the conference finals last season and could be improved this year (although in a deeper, tougher West).
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Lee has given the Grizzlies a boost at the wing with his shooting (and he can defend in their system) and if Memphis can upgrade that spot they become a much more dangerous team in the West.
It’s very possible Memphis does nothing at the deadline, but watch them. This team is already a tough out in the playoffs and a little more shooting and shot creation on the wing makes them a threat to any team in the conference.