ATLANTA, GA - FEBRUARY 02: O.J. Mayo #32 of the Memphis Grizzlies slaps hands a young fan after he was hit with a loose ball during the game against the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on February 2, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
For Memphis Grizzlies fans who believe this Thursday's NBA trade deadline will be a success if the Grizz just keep the band together, re-adjust themselves accordingly upon Zach Randolph's return, and make a run in the absolutely wide open Western Conference as presently constructed, this report, courtesy of Bill Ingram over at Hoopsworld, concerning the almost-traded and oft-center of trade discussion O.J. Mayo and Memphis's plans on keeping him coming off their bench, according to a source, is good news.
Per the story:
In his first full season as the Grizzlies’ sixth-man, Mayo has been nothing short of fantastic. He’s had none of the off-the-court issues that have popped up in the past and he’s been a force for the Grizzlies’ second unit, clearly in the class of OKC’s James Harden and Dallas’ Jason Terry as one of the best sixth-men in the NBA. In fact, he’s been so good that the Grizzlies, who have shopped Mayo off and on for more than a year, may have decided to keep him and hope to be able to re-sign him next summer.
One league source tells HOOPSWORLD that the Grizzlies are no longer interested in trading Mayo, despite a number of offers from teams like the Minnesota Timberwolves and the Indiana Pacers. The Grizzlies seem to have decided that Mayo is worth keeping around, and they will gamble that they can clear some space before free agency begins so they can match any offer for Mayo without going deep into luxury tax territory. Indeed, the Grizzlies have been active in trade talks, just not revolving around any of their primary players.
With the Grizzlies settling into a relatively sound rhythm of solid basketball of late (the let-down in Phoenix, well, let's just move on from that one), and with the aforementioned big addition of Randolph coming possibly as soon as tomorrow, Memphis does not need to be making major shifts to their roster. Mayo has been a consistent scorer, a threat at the least, off the bench this season -- a quality every team, especially this one, needs during the dry spells -- and if the Grizzlies truly want to see how far this team, with all its pieces humming together, can go in the postseason, then Mayo should remain an integral part of the process.