The longest 10-day contract in NBA history is coming to an end...just in time for the recipient of said contract to stick around with the Memphis Grizzlies.
According to Marc Stein of the New York Times, a verbal agreement between the Grizzlies and Anthony Tolliver has been agreed to ahead of the NBA’s one-week transaction window opening up on Tuesday.
After stints with Portland and Sacramento earlier this season, Tolliver was just completing a 10-day deal with the eighth-seeded Grizzlies when the NBA season was suspended indefinitely March 11— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) June 22, 2020
Given the presumed return to health of Brandon Clarke and Jaren Jackson Jr. over the span of the suspension and the fact that both Kyle Anderson and Josh Jackson can play small ball four for Memphis in a pinch, this signing has a bit of surprise to it. The Grizzlies could theoretically use a third point guard type of player, or perhaps another true big man in case Jonas Valanciunas or Gorgui Dieng go down. Tolliver, while boasting a useful skill set as a perimeter threat, is a bit redundant on a healthy Grizzlies roster.
But perhaps familiarity won out here, and given the uncertainty Memphis and the other 21 teams heading in to the Orlando bubble are facing in this 2020 reality. In a limited sample size of five games, Tolliver converted on 41.2% of his three point attempts and per 100 possessions has comparable numbers to Solomon Hill. You can do worse than that with an end of the bench player, and his time already spent this season with the Grizzlies will make the oddity that is this restart at least a bit more normal for the young roster. Bringing in a player completely new to the organization and integrating them would be just another layer of change to contend with. Here, while it’s not a ton of experience with Memphis in particular, at least there is comfort in knowing Tolliver is a competent NBA veteran that can be counted on for spot minutes.
This is going to be a fascinating week for the NBA as the transaction window opens and players make it known whether or not they will be participating in the Orlando bubble. The first Grizzlies domino appears to have fallen - what will come next?
Stick with GBB as the season restart ramps up.