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Andre Iguodala Trade Rumors: Grizzlies 'Certain' SF Will Be Moved at Deadline

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistDecember 25, 2019

Golden State Warriors guard Andre Iguodala celebrates after a score against the Houston Rockets during the second half in Game 6 of a second-round NBA basketball playoff series Friday, May 10, 2019, in Houston. Golden State won 118-113, winning the series. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

One of the prime candidates to be moved before February's trade deadline is veteran Memphis Grizzlies forward Andre Iguodala, who has yet to play a game for the team. 

And according to Omari Sankofa II of The Athletic, the plan remains for Iguodala to eventually be moved:

"The word since the summer has been that the Grizzlies are looking for a promising asset in return for Iguodala, whom they received along with a protected future first. That hasn't changed. The Grizzlies are certain that Iguodala will be moved before the deadline and have engaged several teams on frameworks for potential deals. There's confidence that Memphis will be able to land a first-round pick or promising young player in return, as preferred by the front office."

That follows a report from Sean Deveney of Heavy.com, who noted the Grizzlies weren't wavering on their demands for a first-round pick in a trade.

"They haven't budged," a league executive told Deveney. "Maybe they will as the date gets closer, but they've made clear, they're not interested in a buyout with Andre and they're looking for a first-rounder. Teams have been trying. They haven't let go of that. But that tells you they know they'll be able to get something and won't have to buy him out."

The Grizzlies and Iguodala agreed ahead of the season that the 35-year-old wouldn't report to the team while he seeks a contending team in the twilight of his career. The Grizzlies acquired him from the Golden State Warriors in what was essentially a salary dump for the Dubs, allowing them to sign D'Angelo Russell after they unloaded his $17.1 million contract for this season.

For the Grizzlies, Iguodala could net them two first-round picks, which would represent a savvy bit of business for the team. The question will be which contender is both willing to move assets and has tradeable contracts to send back to the Grizzlies in order to absorb Iguodala's cap hit. 

As Sankofa noted, the "Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers and Los Angeles Lakers are all light on assets after their respective active summers," while Marc Stein of the New York Times previously reported the Dallas Mavericks weren't pursuing Iggy:

Marc Stein @TheSteinLine

The Mavericks are fans of Iguodala and had interest during the summer, league sources say, but the word here in Vegas at the G League Showcase is that Dallas continues to be measured with its trade targets even after its 18-9 start

Still, a market should develop for Iguodala, who offers contending teams an excellent defender on the wing and championship pedigree. In 68 games for the Warriors last season, he averaged 5.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 3.2 assists in 23.2 minutes per contest, shooting 50 percent from the field and 33.3 percent from three. 

Iguodala wouldn't be a blockbuster addition, but he's the sort of quality depth option that every championship team needs. The Grizzlies are banking on that netting them another quality asset before February.

If that doesn't materialize, Iguodala will likely become the headliner on the buyout market. But the Grizzlies remain steadfast in dealing him.