It looks like trade season got started early in the NBA! Rajon Rondo is off to the Dallas Mavericks, the Charlotte Hornets are shopping Lance Stephenson, and the Brooklyn Nets are throwing themselves at anyone that will take any of the Deron Williams/Joe Johnson/Brook Lopez trifecta off their hands.
Over here in the Memphis Grizzlies' secluded corner, Kosta Koufos has been rumored to be a trade target of the Cleveland Cavaliers. This is perfect for Grizzlies fans, of course, because everyone was already itching to move Koufos in fake trades (he's the easiest player of value to move) and now he's in a real trade rumor.
The way I see it, Grizzlies fans see the team with two problems: 1) a lack of a true above-average small forward (and the distinction from shooting guard here is important – THE GUY HAS TO BE AT LEAST 6'8"!), and 2) a surplus of shooting guards, many of whom stand somewhere between average and above average.
Conveniently, the Trade Machine lists Courtney Lee, Tony Allen, Vince Carter, Quincy Pondexter, Jordan Adams and Nick Calathes all as shooting guards, leaving Tayshaun Prince the only small forward on the roster. Of course, around these parts, Prince doesn't really count for anything that isn't negative. This all goes to confirm that the shooting guards have to go, and that the Grizzlies need a small forward.
Grizzlies fans have been on the ball with this one, really for the past few years now. The Twitterverse is always loaded with trades to get the Grizzlies a better small forward. That makes it easy – all I have to do is revisit memory lane and bingo: we've got our targets!
Jeff Green, Boston Celtics (6-9, 235 lbs)
Is he available? The Celtics are clearly in rebuilding mode after trading Rondo, and that means it's time for the Grizzlies to spring on Green.
Why do we want him? Green does it all. He shoots threes, he defends, he's athletic, he can ball-handle and he's big for a wing. This is exactly the kind of guy the Grizzlies need at small forward, because why would you want a guy that can only do one thing?
Thaddeus Young, Minnesota Timberwolves (6-8, 220 lbs)
Is he available? Young plays for the Timberwolves and they're bad, so why would they want him?
Why do we want him? Young is hard-nosed, exactly the kind of guy Grizzlies fans will love. He is strong yet athletic, defends and can create his own shot. He can even shoot a bit, which means the Grizzlies can stick him on the perimeter for spacing!
Danilo Gallinari, Denver Nuggets (6-10, 225 lbs)
Is he available? The Nuggets will have that fire sale eventually, so the Grizzlies can have Gallinari then.
Why do we want him? Gallinari is a pure shooter that can create off the bounce and has terrific size for a guy with his level of shot-making and range. He doesn't defend well, but the Grizzlies are a great defensive team and can swallow it for what Gallo offers on offense.
Why settle for one when you can have them all, right? Let's build the Ultimate Grizzlies™!