With a little over a week to go until October 25’s regular season tip-off against the New Orleans Pelicans, the Memphis Grizzlies still find themselves with one major rotational quagmire on their hands.
Since Dillon Brooks’ departure back in early July, the ball club has been searching for any semblance of an answer to their starting wing position.
Through four preseason games played, head coach Taylor Jenkins has done some experimentation at the three spot by continuously shaking up starting lineups, though even he still seems lost when it comes to finding a trusty replacement option.
While the most likely course of action for Memphis is for them to simply promote from within, there are some who feel scouring the trade market for a new wing talent would provide a much greater impact, and arguably the best fit for this team both from a skillset and, frankly, age standpoint is Toronto Raptors stud, O.G. Anunoby.
Rumored to have been available on the market for quite some time now, the 26-year-old has been anointed on several occasions (especially by us at BSB) as “the ideal target” for this title-hopeful team and is believed to be someone worth coughing up a considerable haul for to attain his services.
Unfortunately, due to his highly coveted attributes and intangibles, the Grizzlies may not be the only club his presence would immediately thrust into the legitimate championship contenders conversation, as Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report recently broached the idea of a direct rival swooping in and pursuing the likes of Anunoby.
Recent mock trade sees Mavericks land ideal Grizzlies trade target, OG Anunoby
In a piece entitled “Simple Trades That Would Change 2024 NBA Championship Race,” Swartz constructed a specific transaction that would see the Dallas Mavericks “cash in” on their remaining trade assets in a deal for the wing.
The proposed exchange reads as follows:
Swartz would go on to discuss how Anunoby “would be the perfect piece to elevate the Mavs back into a playoff lock,” citing that he’s “one of the NBA’s premier defenders” and has an offensive game that would mesh well with stars Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving.
This stance, in fact, is precisely why he would also be a near-perfect fit for the Grizzlies, as we noted in previous discussions on the matter:
"“Adding him to this starting lineup would not only give the Grizzlies one of the most menacing defensive trio in the association consisting of him, Marcus Smart, and Jaren Jackson Jr. but it would also add yet another promising young talent to their collection that not only would make them lethal title contenders in 2023-24, but for the many years to come.”"
A seven-year veteran, Anunoby is coming off one of the best seasons of his already impressive career, as he wrapped 2022-23 off with averages of 16.8 points, 5.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists, and 1.9 steals while shooting 47.6 percent from the field and 38.7 percent from distance.
Including his two-way productivity and with his past championship experience (won a title with the Raptors back in 2019), there are a slew of reasons why the wing would be a tremendous addition to this Grizzlies team.
Should they be at all interested in making such a splashy move, GM Zach Kleiman and company should consider jumping into action soon before another club like, say, the Mavericks swoops in.