Grizzlies blockbuster trade idea sends Jaren Jackson Jr. back to power forward

Memphis Grizzlies v Detroit Pistons
Memphis Grizzlies v Detroit Pistons / Nic Antaya/GettyImages

Though some may feel that Jaren Jackson Jr. proved enough during the 2023-24 campaign to be trusted as the franchise's primary center moving forward, GM Zach Kleiman suggested during his exit interview that the Memphis Grizzlies will be looking to add another big this offseason to better bolster their pivot position and, thus, slide the All-Star back down to the four.

While there are many different courses of action the ball club could embark on to address this desire, Andy Bailey of Bleacher Report seems to believe that the best option for them may be to strike a trade with the Chicago Bulls to land veteran five Nikola Vucevic and went as far as to construct a hypothetical trade package to get such a deal done.

Recent trade idea sends All-Star center Nikola Vucevic to Grizzlies

Vucevic, B/R trade

During their most recent successful campaigns, the Grizzlies proved to be most effective while having Jackson slotting in at the four and a more traditional, big-bodied presence man the five which, up until this past season, was Steven Adams.

Bailey suggests that adding a bruiser like the 6-foot-10, 260-pound Vucevic could help make up for the beloved Kiwi's departure while also sending the 24-year-old back to his more natural position at power forward.

"Jaren Jackson Jr. got a chance to spread his wings a bit as both a 5 and as a more heavily featured scoring option this season, but not having Steven Adams around to take on the more bruising aspects of the position affected the team defense.

The Memphis Grizzlies were outside the top 10 in points allowed per 100 possessions and in the bottom 10 for defensive rebounding percentage. And Jackson grabbed just 5.5 boards per game.

Nikola Vučević isn't the brute Adams is as a defender and rebounder, but he would spare Jackson some punishment inside, could take on heftier defensive assignments and allow JJJ to return to his more natural defensive position of rover."

Andy Bailey

Throughout his 13-year NBA career, Vucevic has made a name for himself as being a highly dependable two-way player who can bang down low with the best of them both on the boards and in the post.

A two-time All-Star, the 33-year-old is coming off of yet another impressive season where he went on to post stellar averages of 18.0 points, 10.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and just shy of a block while shooting 48.4 percent from the field.

While he may not be the second-chance opportunity rebounder that Adams proved to be for the Grizzlies, the addition of Vucevic would provide the club with a much-needed upgrade in the size department while also giving them a true interior enforcer on the offensive side of the ball, which, considering they finished dead-last in points in the paint scoring this season, is something Taylor Jenkins' rotation could certainly use for.

All of this for the cost of Luke Kennard's polarizing team option, the final year of the always-injured Derrick Rose's contract, and a protected future first could be viewed as a borderline steal if executed by Memphis and should be strongly considered by the front office this offseason.