Feb 17, 2014, 9:16 PM EDT
The Memphis Grizzlies have a very stout defense but need more scoring punch, particularly outside shooting, if they are going to advance deep in the playoffs again (Courtney Lee has been a big boost here).
The Minnesota Timberwolves need more consistent defense if they have hopes of making a playoff push (it’s not likely this season but next season it is a must) — and that defense has to be on the perimeter as the front line of Kevin Love and Nikola Pekovic are locked in and not exactly rim protectors.
That has the Grizzlies and Timberwolves talking about a basically offense for defense trade, something reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.
Memphis wants to include forward Tayshaun Prince into the package and the deal could be expanded to include guard Tony Allen, league sources told Yahoo Sports. Components of a proposed deal are still fluid.
Memphis has been furiously trying to unload Prince and the remaining $7.2 million (2013-’14) and $7.7 million (2014-’15) on his contract, league sources said.
I see how this trade works for Memphis — they unload the Prince contract and pick up an athletic swingman who can shoot in Budinger, plus Barea could make a nice backup point guard behind Mike Conley. Basically this makes the Memphis bench tougher to deal with.
But they would miss Tony Allen — “The Grindfather” is loved by the fan base and embodies the grit and grind style of the Grizzlies. The fans likely are ticked about this deal, but money is money.
Allen’s grinding style is exactly what Minnesota needs. Prince is also still a solid defender thanks to his length. The Timberwolves could roll out Prince, Allen and Ricky Rubio and be much better defensively on the perimeter than they are now.
Which is to say, there’s some logic to this trade. But we’ll see if the details can be worked out and if Minnesota really wants to take on that oversized Prince contract.
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