NBA Trade Rumors: Grizzlies Would Be Foolish to Deal Rudy Gay Before Summer

Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IJanuary 10, 2013

Dec. 12, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA: Memphis Grizzlies forward Rudy Gay (22) against the Phoenix Suns at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Grizzlies 82-80. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

It makes sense that the Memphis Grizzlies would trade Rudy Gay before next season, given the team is barreling toward the dreaded luxury tax.

According to Marc Stein of, the Toronto Raptors have joined the list of squads looking to acquire the 6'8", 230-pound swingman.

But dealing Gay before the trade deadline in February would be a mistake.

With the big three of Gay, Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol healthy this year, the Grizzlies have gotten off to a 23-10 start. That includes an impressive 94-87 victory over the rising Golden State Warriors on Wednesday (Gay posted 18 points, six assists and five rebounds in that win). They are currently the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference, and they have the potential to make it to the NBA Finals this season.

There is a lot to like about this team, and despite a dip after a scorching 14-3 start, Memphis' win over the Warriors on Wednesday in Oakland is proof that it's certainly not time to overreact.

The only way the Grizzlies should trade Gay in February is if they get a deal that's too good to turn down. If they are still playing sound basketball in February, they would need to receive an offer that would not only keep them in position to capture the title this season, but also set them up to be a contender in the coming years.

It's possible, but, to me, it appears more likely that the Grizzlies will ride the chemistry their big three have developed this season and then trade Gay in the summer.

Memphis is in a great position to make a run in the playoffs. The last thing the franchise wants to do is frantically look for a trade partner for Gay. Opportunities like this come very rarely, and trading a leg of the Grizzlies' big three would be sabotaging that opportunity.


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