4 popular free agent targets Grizzlies should avoid at all cost

Memphis Grizzlies v Brooklyn Nets
Memphis Grizzlies v Brooklyn Nets / Elsa/GettyImages
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As the early offseason begins for non-playoff teams, the Memphis Grizzlies find themselves in a position to take a deep breath and focus on retooling the team to supplement the core that aided them in a previous trip to the postseason during the 2022-2023 campaign.

As essential members such as Ja Morant, Desmond Bane, and Jaren Jackson Jr. remain under contract, there exists an impending need to supplement the team with a secondary unit to complement a championship-level starting five.

While there is a strong presence in Memphis from a collection of young talents who continue to grow game to game, there is also an extensive list of free agents available this summer should Memphis choose to opt in on the shopping.

However, as tempting as many of the free agents may be, Memphis would be wise to steer clear of several who could end up hindering the team more than helping.

Players the Memphis Grizzlies are better off avoiding in free agency

Amid the long list of free agents available in the offseason, several intriguing names may seem tempting from a distance, but come with potentially disastrous repercussions if things don't go according to plan.

With this Grizzlies backcourt looking well fortified for the coming season barring any health setbacks, a large amount of frontcourt players will be standouts for recruitment. Either way, from guards to bigs, there are a few names, in particular, that should be avoided by the franchise this summer.

Nicolas Claxton

Among the younger talents available in this summer's free agent class, Nic Claxton exists as a strong candidate across the league for teams to inquire about as the fifth-year player could potentially leave the Brooklyn Nets.

Claxton is coming off an individually strong season with the Nets, and, with his current two-year contract set to expire, there is an expectation that Brooklyn will attempt to retain him with a presumably more lucrative deal.

Although there are merits to Claxton's play style and a visible improvement in his defensive prowess, it will likely be hard to pry him away from the native team that can offer him a more extensive contract to remain in Brooklyn.

Beyond this, it's feasible that there will be other Eastern Conference teams looking to lock in a young center and could potentially offer Claxton a more sizeable and extended contract.

The Grizzlies will need to make a final decision on how they choose to approach solidifying a bench unit that can match a championship-tier starting unit, though Claxton could feasibly start alongside Jaren Jackson Jr.

Additionally, there will need to be a decision made as to how much salary Memphis would be potentially willing to dedicate to Claxton: -- while he isn't a max-contract level player quite yet, there is a high expectation for him to command roughly $20 million a year annually.

As an approach defensively, the prospect of running a frontcourt with both Jaren Jackson Jr. and Nic Claxton would optimistically have immense potential to provide phenomenal defensive utility while also creating a major offensive threat, particularly on fastbreaks.

Teams such as the Minnesota Timberwolves have shown throughout this season that there can be a remarkable result when using the strategy of a jumbo frontcourt, but it remains easier said than done.

Beyond this, taking Claxton's recent season with a grain of salt due to the rather disastrous season the Brooklyn Nets had as a whole, and the matter of transplanting a still young player to a brand new team and how much time to properly adapt they will require raises valid concerns as to his fit for a team looking to solidify its frontcourt rotation.

Whether or not Claxton could act as a keystone piece for a team with championship goals remains to be seen even after previous playoff runs in Brooklyn.