Memphis Grizzlies’ Koufos Gone Before Free-Agency Begins?


May 13, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Memphis Grizzlies center Kosta Koufos (41) dribbles the basketball against Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23, right) during the fourth quarter in game five of the second round of the NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. The Warriors defeated the Grizzlies 98-78. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Memphis Grizzlies’ impending free-agent backup center, Kosta Koufos, looks be on the verge of receiving a bigger payday and a change of scenery.

The Memphis Grizzlies’ impending free-agent backup center, Kosta Koufos, is already drawing plenty of interest around the league which is building the assumption that he will not be in a Grizzly uniform by the beginning of training camp. Teams across the association have taken notice of his defensive presence as a reserve and it looks as if Kosta is on his way to a pay rise–and a change of scenery.

According to Aris Barkas of, teams are already expressing their interest in Koufos. Three early frontrunners include the Orlando Magic, Sacramento Kings, and Boston Celtics–in no particular order. The initial report read:

Kostas Koufos is a free agent, despite playing limited minutes behind Marc Gasol he seems ready for a bigger – even a starting – role in a team and that’s why he is name is rumored to be gaining interest from many NBA teams.

According to US sources not only Memphis may try to keep him – a scenario which is tied to the fate of an other free agent, Marc Gasol – but also Orlando, Sacramento and Boston have an interest on him. Of course, we will have to wait until the 1st of July to see how things will play out for him and which offers will be on the table, but it’s certain that there’s a market for a center like Koufos.

The Greek American wants to get more minutes and probably a raise from the 3 m. US dollars he was paid this season from Memphis.

I am not at all surprised to hear of these three potential suitors as they all could–on paper–use additional depth in their respective frontcourts. Surely there will be even more teams that make their interest known as we draw nearer to the month of July when free-agency opens. Also, the Memphis Grizzlies are assumed to wish to retain the backup center on their roster, but it may simply come down to losing a bidding war. If the Grizz are able to resign All-Star center Marc Gasol, they will most likely have no realistic shot at retaining Koufos, too.

Feb 6, 2015; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves center Nikola Pekovic (14) blocks out against Memphis Grizzlies center Kosta Koufos (41) in the third quarter at Target Center. The Wolves won 90-89 over the Grizzlies. Mandatory Credit: Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports

Kosta Koufos was ranked third in the league in the 2014-15 regular season in highest defensive ratings and is a true seven-foot traditional center.

Want to read about Kosta Koufos’ impending free-agency from an Orlando Magic perspective? Look no further than our friends over at Orlando Magic Daily.

Keep checking Beale Street Bears daily for the latest offseason news regarding your Memphis Grizzlies!

Go Grizz!