This one seems a little hard to believe, but there's a rumor floating around, via HoopsWorld, stating that the Grizzlies intend on matching any offers for restricted free agent O.J. Mayo this summer. Wait, what?
First and foremost, prized shooting guard OJ Mayo is very likely to become a restricted free agent in July, and while the Grizzlies have come close to trading him a couple of times, they have had a hard time actually parting with their force off the bench. The word out of Memphis is that the Grizzlies will likely match offers for Mayo, and if their recent track record is any indication, they may, indeed do that.
Huh. Now, I'm not saying this report isn't true, but, it just seems odd. Could it be a business ploy to try and stave off any teams who might try and make a run at Mayo? Look, they said the same thing last year about Marc Gasol, then Houston came in and made an offer and the Grizzlies matched it. Truth. Buuuut, we all knew the Grizzlies would match any contract for their franchise center. This, however, is a completely different case.
With Mayo, we're talking about a guy who has underperformed over most of his career -- more specifically over the last two seasons, when the Grizzlies made runs at winning the Western Conference. We're also talking about a player who was essentially traded for Josh McRoberts (meh) and Anthony Morrow (meh), before both deals were nixed at the last minute. Not quite the "we'll match any and all offers" resume on Mayo, huh?
Finally, Mayo said just a month ago that he wanted to "play point guard elsewhere." Um, OK. So, what more do we need here? It would seem as if he's the perfect candidate for a hometown discount, match anything under, say, $7 million per season? But what happens when someone like New Jersey comes in and offers him $9 million per when they continue to strike-out this summer? Do you match that? Not when you're talking about shedding Rudy Gay's contract. I mean, this just isn't computing.
Mayo hasn't been all that happy playing in Memphis, especially over the last two seasons when he was moved to the bench. I do honestly think a change of scenery will do him some good, and unless we can get him back at, what, 5 years, $40 million (maybe? - that even may be a bit high) I'm not sure we want to match any deals.
He was traded for Josh McRoberts!!!
Sorry, I probably could have saved a few hundred words and just typed that instead of breaking down the scenario any further. I'm a bit skeptical of this report -- which isn't to say I am skeptical of the reporting; two different things. Yeah I'd like him back, but I don't think he warrants a "match any contract" tag. His price tag may be too high for our taste.