Grizzlies big labeled as possible trade target for top title favorites

Minnesota Timberwolves v Memphis Grizzlies
Minnesota Timberwolves v Memphis Grizzlies / Justin Ford/GettyImages

The Memphis Grizzlies may currently boast the third-worst record in the Western Conference standings at 15-26, but this is by no means an indicator that they have a talent problem on their hands.

Far from the truth, in fact, as coach Taylor Jenkins' roster is chock full of high-impact talents who, when fully healthy, have helped guide the club toward top-seeded playoff runs.

Sadly, several of their core players have been sidelined due to health-related ailments, which now has Memphis on the outside looking in on a Play-In Tournament spot and, in turn, heading toward a potential sell-off of commodities at this year's deadline in an effort to start early preperations for 2024-25.

In the event that the Grizzlies look to ship out some of their players ahead of February's deadline, it goes without saying that there would be many rival teams dialing them up in hopes of snagging a few players in a trade and, in a recent piece penned by Mass Live's Brian Robb, the idea of the Boston Celtics inquiring about Xavier Tillman was broached.

Grizzlies big Xavier Tillman linked to Celtics as possible trade option

"The Celtics have the $6.2 million Grant Williams TPE that will expire at the trade deadline so you have to think that Boston will try to put that to use in some form. The problem for them is finding a type of wing that will actually be available and an appealing addition in that price range. Could a guy like Saddiq Bey become available if the Hawks turn into sellers? Or will Boston long for some big-man insurance with a guy like Xavier Tillman in Memphis. We will be going over the options in far greater depth here at MassLive in the weeks to come but finding a nice fit at a reasonable asking price is tougher than anticipated."

Brian Robb

Considering his particular skill set, high-energy style of play, and rather reasonable contract details ($1.9 million salary for final year of rookie-scale deal) it's no surprise that Tillman is being linked to title-favorites such as the Celtics. Even playoff-hopefuls such as the Dallas Mavericks have been linked to the big as being a possible trade destination.

However, tweener bigs are always a valuable commodity to have within a competent team's arsenal, and the Grizzlies are expected to be exactly that come next season once guys like Ja Morant, Steven Adams, and Brandon Clarke are at full strength right from the jump, which makes the idea of moving Tillman rather perplexing.

Perhaps he could be had for the right price at this year's deadline but the idea of re-signing him in free agency may be more appealing to the franchise when it comes to their long-term plans.

Currently on the season, he finds himself posting solid all-around averages of 6.1 points, 4.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.2 steals, and 1.0 blocks per game.