The Memphis Grizzlies reportedly look to trade their No. 4 overall 2018 draft pick in exchange for less development and more immediacy.
Memphis served as a bottom-feeder team in the 2017-18 season, as they barely scrapped by the — to put it nicely — “developing” Phoenix Suns as the worst team in the league. The Grizzlies finished the year with a record of 22-60 and are looking forward to next season, as they attempt to regain a postseason spot in the Western Conference.
Despite their flop of a season, the last time Memphis made an appearance in the playoffs was a mere one year ago. In the 2016-17 season, the Grizzlies sparked into the postseason and faced-off against the San Antonio Spurs in the first round. Unfortunately, — yet presumptuously — Memphis was annihilated by the accomplished Spurs franchise, 2-4.
The Grizzlies gazed into this season with aspirations of a second-round re-debut — yet, were aware that the possibility of the eighth spot was even a stretch, as their star player, Mike Conley, still nursed the recovery of a bone intrusion in his heel from January of the 2016-17 season.
With Conley back, and as healthy as they’ll ever be, the Grizzlies analyze this draft with a desired top-five pick.
NBA’s top prospects (Deandre Ayton and Luka Doncic) will likely go before Memphis even has a chance to grab a right-here-right-now star. For the Grizzlies, a team who is not looking to rebuild but rather build, the smarter decision would be to trade your No. 4 pick for an experienced, useful and immediate star in the league.
Conley and Marc Gasol are avid, determined powerhouses just waiting for a consistent teammate to step up to the plate and complete their cornerstone trio.
It would not hurt Memphis to acquire another guard, as their most dominant players land in the positions of either center or point guard. Trading their No. 4 pick for a significant and confident beyond-the-arc shooter that is either in the draft or — more preferably — outside the draft (free-agency is crawling with guards) would aid tremendously to their go-getter roster in the 2018-19 season.
Although the future of their pick is unclear, one thing should be made very clear: the Grizzlies — despite popular belief — should not be overlooked next year, as they are recent postseason contenders and wield a powerful position in the NBA Draft.