Memphis Grizzlies mentioned as trade destination for NBA superstar
Bill Simmons, the enigmatic founder of The Ringer and outspoken sports analyst, name dropped the Memphis Grizzlies as a destination for a woebegone NBA superstar in a recent episode of his eponymous podcast.
Simmons sent shockwaves through the NBA after declaring “there’s some buzz” that Los Angeles Lakers superstar Anthony Davis may be available in a trade during the Nov. 7 episode of The Bill Simmons Podcast.
Simmons and Kevin O’Connor, who covers the NBA for The Ringer, discussed possible trade scenarios for Los Angeles Lakers superstar Anthony Davis. One destination that was mentioned, whether in jest or in sincerity was way out of left field and one that involved the Memphis Grizzlies.
Simmons posited “a ballsy trade” trade (at around the 1:28:00 mark of the episode) that involved the Memphis Grizzlies putting Jaren Jackson Jr. and picks on the table in exchange for Anthony Davis.
The salaries don’t match up, so other pieces would have to be involved, but there’s no way the Grizzlies would want to put all their eggs in an Anthony Davis basket, right?
The Grizzlies and Lakers would have to have multiple players involved to make the salaries work, but something like Anthony Davis, Patrick Beverley and Austin Reaves for Jaren Jackson Jr., Dillon Brooks, Danny Green, and two first-round picks would work, according to ESPN’s NBA trade machine.
It’s something to consider, especially if you think Brooks is gone in free agency. And, the Grizzlies could use more depth. Reaves would be a great spark off the bench and Beverley brings some defensive tenacity that would otherwise be lost in trading Dillon Brooks. The Lakers would probably want Tyus Jones in the deal, but he’s unavailable to trade until January.
What the Grizzlies have to decipher is: are Jackson and Davis really all that different? Both have had their share of injuries and setbacks, but are gifted scorers and shot blockers. Through his first nine games of the 2022-23 NBA season, Anthony Davis is putting up strong numbers alongside LeBron James: 23.2 ppg, 10.3 rpg, and 2.0 bpg in just under 35 minutes per game.
But, is it really worth shuffling the deck to get a few more points per game from someone who is six years older than Jackson?
Ultimately, it would be unwise for the Grizzlies to move on from Jaren Jackson Jr., especially after the big step forward he took last year. The Grizzlies are doing really well this season (winning seven of their first 11 games) despite not having Jackson, Green or Ziaire Williams play a single regular-season minute.