Andre Iguodala Responds to Grizzlies' Ja Morant, Dillon Brooks After Heat Trade

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistFebruary 6, 2020

Golden State Warriors guard Andre Iguodala (9) in the first half during an NBA basketball game against the Phoenix Suns, Monday, Dec. 31, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

After reportedly getting traded to the Miami Heat on Wednesday, Andre Iguodala suggested that he has no hard feelings over some of the things Memphis Grizzlies players Ja Morant and Dillon Brooks recently said about him.

According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, the Grizzlies agreed to send Iguodala to the Miami Heat for a package that includes forward Justise Winslow. Memphis acquired Iguodala from the Golden State Warriors during the offseason, but he has sat out the entire season thus far after the two sides decided that Iggy would not report to the team.

Morant and Brooks have been outspoken in their belief that Iguodala didn't handle things the right way, but the 36-year-old told Marc J. Spears of ESPN's The Undefeated that he has no issue with them:

"You got to take everything with a grain of salt. Rules shift from time to time across generations. There is a 10-15 year age difference. They don't move how we move and the same wasn't said about us when we were that age. 'What are young guys doing now? What is respectful now?' ... It's different.

"So, I don't look at it as personal. I don't know if it's from them. But the only thing I will tell them is that I love them. Those are my guys. [DeMar] DeRozan said Lou Williams. He said, 'Lou is my brother and he would give him his last dollar.' I feel the same way about every player in this league. I felt the same way about those two guys. Ja is going to be Rookie of the Year and he is playing amazing basketball. I've been watching him this year even though I knew we'd never be teammates. This guy is a talent."

In addition to joining one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference, Iguodala reportedly agreed to a two-year, $30 million contract extension with the Heat as well.

Brooks made headlines Monday when he told reporters that he was looking forward to the Grizzlies trading Iguodala and getting a chance to play against him:

"First time I seen him was on TV talking about us. It doesn't even matter. Andre Iguodala is a great player. I feel like he's doing the right thing for his career, but we don't really care.

"It's not a distraction at all. I laugh at that type of stuff. A guy that's on our team that doesn't want to be on our team, I can't wait till we find a way to trade him so we can play him and show him really what Memphis is about."

Morant then appeared to echo Brooks' sentiments with the following tweet:

After news of the Iguodala trade broke Wednesday night, Brooks seemed to have a bit of a parting shot for Iggy as well:

Little was expected of Memphis entering the season, but at 26-25, the Grizzlies own the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference, and they have been one of the NBA's most pleasant surprises.

The play of Morant and Brooks, along with second-year forward Jaren Jackson Jr., has been a big reason for Memphis' turnaround.

As Iguodala said, Morant is the front-runner for NBA Rookie of the Year honors with averages of 17.4 points, 7.0 assists and 3.4 rebounds per game. Meanwhile, Brooks is having a career year with 16.1 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists per contest.

A deep playoff run may not be in the Grizzlies' future since they are currently lining up to face the top-seeded Los Angeles Lakers in the first round, but few teams have a brighter future.

Given the fact that he is a highly skilled defender and just 23 years old, Winslow seems like a better fit for Memphis than Iguodala moving forward anyway, as he'll be able to grow as part of the Grizzlies' young core.

Meanwhile, Iguodala has a chance to win now as part of a team that is led by All-Stars Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, as well as Goran Dragic, Kendrick Nunn and Tyler Herro.

The Heat may have a better chance than any other team to knock off the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference this season, and Iguodala's veteran presence should help in big games.

With Iggy playing for a contender and the Grizzlies landing another talented, young player, both parties seemingly got everything they wanted out of the situation.

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