Grizzlies could realistically acquire 'top' trade target with TPE

Memphis Grizzlies v New Orleans Pelicans
Memphis Grizzlies v New Orleans Pelicans / Chris Graythen/GettyImages

Wednesday, the Memphis Grizzlies were awarded their second disabled player exception of the year following Ja Morant's season-ending shoulder surgery.

With this, the team now possesses two injury-induced exceptions holding values of $6.3 million (Steven Adams) and, now, $12.4 million that, in theory, can be used to add a player to the roster via free agency, waivers, or trade.

However, on top of these, the franchise also has a traded player exception with a value of roughly $7 million as a result of the Dillon Brooks sign-and-trade this past summer.

Now, because the Grizzlies are currently 17-27 and reside well on the outside looking in on a Play-In Tournament slot, let alone a playoff berth, there are some such as Locked on Grizzlies host Joe Mullinax who believe it may be in the team's best interest to let these luxuries go unused, for they'd prefer to see coach Taylor Jenkins focus on developing some of their current project players and adding more heads into the rotation could take away meaningful minutes.

While there is certainly sound logic to this type of desire, recent rumblings suggest that Zach Kleiman and company could still very much be interested in adding a few new talents to the roster prior to the February 8 trade deadline, meaning at least one of these exceptions could come in handy after all.

As far as who the Grizzlies could look to bring aboard, that's a discussion still being debated. However, Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report suggests that New York Knicks combo guard Quentin Grimes should be the team's "top" target on the trade market this season and, conveniently enough, he's a player who could be absorbed into their TPE.

Grizzlies could absorb Knicks guard Quentin Grimes into TPE

Tabbed as being "on the same timeline as Morant, Desmond Bane and Jaren Jackson Jr.," the 23-year-old is a high-upside combo guard who could serve as a major upgrade to Memphis' backcourt rotation as well as their bench scoring unit.

Boasting a smooth shooting stroke, an underrated handle, and highly efficient defensive skills, through three season with the Knicks Grimes finds himself sporting career averages of 8.6 points, 2.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, and just shy of a steal per game while shooting 38.1 percent from distance.

Adding his ability to create offensively and contribute in a positive manner defensively could prove to be of great value to the Grizzlies both for the remainder of this season and for the next several to come once they get back to a championship-driven mentality with their core fully healthy.

Still attached to his rookie-scale contract, Grimes is signed through the end of 2024-25 and is currently making $2.3 million this season, thus meaning his salary could easily slide right into the Brooks TPE.

For a couple of future draft picks, Memphis must strongly consider using their exception on the promising young guard.