Memphis Grizzlies likely calling these 5 teams about draft trade-up

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Memphis Grizzlies

Tyus Jones, Memphis Grizzlies (Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports)

Could the Memphis Grizzlies trade for one of Charlotte’s first-rounders?

A rumor that seems to be permeating around the league is that the Hornets are willing to offer up their No. 13 or No. 15 overall picks if a team is willing to take on the ever-injured Gordon Hayward and his albatross of a contract.

Hayward is 32 and is projected to be owed $30.07 million next season and $31.5 million during the 2023-24 season. He’ll be an unrestricted free agent after that, which may not be a huge loss if you can draft his eventual replacement or a big man to start alongside Jaren Jackson Jr. in the very near future.

It’s unclear what we should expect out of Hayward at this stage in his career. In the past 5 seasons, he’s played: 1 game, 72 games, 52 games, 44 games, and 49 games.

If the Grizzlies don’t have to give up much to make this rumored trade, I’d do it. But, the team should be careful not to give up to much for essentially a part-time player that you have no idea how much he’ll be able to play for the Grizzlies.

Would New Orleans be willing to trade away their No. 8 overall pick?

Like the Blazers, the Pelicans are intrigued by adding veteran talent to their young, over-achieving team.

The Pelicans were great trade partners last year, helping us execute a deal that allowed us to draft Ziaire Williams out of Stanford. Could these two teams make another draft deal?

It’s unclear what sort of veteran they might want. A Tyus Jones sign-and-trade might be complicated, especially if Jones has no desire to go there.

Rumors have linked the Phoenix Suns and Cam Johnson to the Pelicans in exchange for that No. 8 pick. I’m not sure the Grizzlies have a better offer than that.

Especially once Zion Williamson returns, New Orleans will have a really solid starting unit and they can focus on building their depth on the bench. Might they covet a Brandon Clarke, De’Anthony Melton, or Xavier Tillman Sr.?

The Grizzlies would have to include one or both of this year’s first-rounders, plus a future first and a bench player, to get this deal done. Seems like a long shot.

Bonus Pick:

Keep an eye on the Cleveland Cavaliers at No. 14, according to Mike Scotto of Hoops Hype. He reports Memphis, Minnesota, and Milwaukee are all interested in trading up to acquire this pick from the Cavs.

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