As the February NBA trade deadline draws near, rumors and speculations continue to swirl that the Memphis Grizzlies will be parting ways with veteran center Marc Gasol. Per Spotrac, Gasol has a player option on his contract that could allow him to become an unrestricted free agent next summer. If the Grizzlies won’t get an assurance that he intends to finish his contract in Memphis, trading him now will be their best option rather than losing him in the 2019 NBA free agency without getting anything in return.
Marc Gasol may already be on the downside of his NBA career, but he could still be a great addition to a playoff-bound team, especially one that needs a big man who could boost their performance on both ends of the floor. In the past three years, Gasol has seen success in the NBA by adding three-point shooting in his sets of skills. This season, the 33-year-old center is averaging 15.2 points, 8.5 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 1.3 blocks, 1.2 steals, 43.3 percent when shooting from the field, and 35.5 percent when shooting from beyond the arc.
According to Dan Favale of Bleacher Report, one of the NBA teams who could express interest in acquiring Marc Gasol is the Los Angeles Clippers. In the proposed trade deal, the Clippers will be sending Marcin Gortat, Jerome Robinson, Milos Teodosic, and a 2019 second-round pick to the Grizzlies for Gasol and Shelvin Mack. The deal works on ESPN‘s NBA Trade Machine.
“Marc Gasol is good fit for the Clippers if he’s determined to explore free agency this summer. They aspire to sign Kevin Durant and/or Kawhi Leonard (player option), so they cannot afford to saddle themselves with extra money beyond this season, but they also need a frontcourt upgrade. Head coach Doc Rivers is reluctant to play Boban Marjanovic for long spurts, and the Mike Scott experiment has flopped after brief success. Marcin Gortat is unspectacular. Danilo Gallinari may be the best option at the 5 after Montrezl Harrell. Gasol jibes with the Clippers’ immediate playoff chase and offseason ambitions, if he’s declining his player option.”
— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) January 19, 2019
The potential acquisition of Marc Gasol could be a huge help for the Clippers in making a deep playoff run this season. The Clippers won’t mind if Gasol is only a one-year rental since they could use the salary cap space to chase the likes of Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard, Jimmy Butler, Klay Thompson, Kemba Walker, and DeMarcus Cousins in the 2019 NBA free agency.
However, it remains unknown if the suggested trade offer will be enough to convince the Grizzlies to make a deal centered on Marc Gasol. As Favale noted, the Clippers could also explore a trade package centered on veteran shooting guard Avery Bradley.