The Memphis Grizzlies put the NBA on notice in the 2021-22 season. They showed they can be a true playoff contender and are built on more than just their superstar. That superstar, Ja Morant, joined the NBA's true upper echelon while the Grizzlies showed that they can back their trash talk up.
Now, as the Grizzlies enter the offseason after losing in the second round of the playoffs to the Golden State Warriors, they have to look for ways to bolster their roster. Shooters and more reliable half-court creators around Morant should be the priority. Their half-court offense was not good and they shot below average from 3-point territory. Relying on fast breaks is not a horrible strategy, but without a reliable backup plan, it may not get them super far again.
The Grizzlies have expiring contracts, cap space and tons of draft picks to offer. In addition to being a potential hotbed for free agents, they should have no issue finding trades that help them get even better. Here are three different ideas.
3 trades Grizzlies must make in 2022 NBA offseason
3. Bogdan Bogdanovic
The Grizzlies could offer some defensive help for the Atlanta Hawks in the form of Dillon Brooks. Memphis could also offer draft compensation to add another strong shooter to its offense.
Bogdanovic is a pure shooter who can get to his spots and excels in getting catch-and-shoot and pull-up buckets efficiently. He averaged 15.1 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game with a 56.2 true shooting percentage. Although he doesn't attack defenses or draw fouls very well, he is the ideal shooter next to Morant and would help elevate their offense.
Atlanta, meanwhile, would benefit from having Brooks' edge and physicality on defense. Another team has a strong scorer and a need for a tough perimeter defender.
The Cleveland Cavaliers could certainly use Sexton, but they made a huge trade for Caris LeVert during the season. The Grizzlies would have to use a sign-and-trade to get Sexton. They would offer Brooks and one of their two 2022 draft picks to the Cavs. Since Sexton is more dynamic and younger than Bogdanovic, Memphis would have to give up more draft capital.
Sexton and Morant would be a questionable defensive fit in the backcourt, but their offensive fit would be strong. With Sexton's ability to shoot and drive, the latter of which he is improving in every season, he could help make the Grizzlies' offense more multi-dimensional. He averaged 24.3 points per game last season before averaging only 16.0 points per game in just 11 games this season. Having someone else who can penetrate defenses could help Morant dominate even more.
The Cavs could use Brooks as a primary perimeter defender and shooter alongside Darius Garland and LeVert. Adding in his physicality on the perimeter in front of Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen would enhance their defensive identity.
1. Malcolm Brogdon and Myles Turner
In what would be a massive trade, the Grizzlies would acquire two veterans from the Indiana Pacers. The Grizzlies would send Brooks, Steven Adams and several first-round draft picks to get it done.
Brogdon only played 36 games last year, but he would be a fantastic fit next to Morant. The 29-year-old averaged 19.1 points, 5.9 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game. He has also shot 38 percent from 3 in four of his six seasons. His efficiency dipped once he went from the Milwaukee Bucks to the Pacers after he became a more primary offensive weapon. With Morant carrying the burden, he could become a true sharpshooter again.
Turner, meanwhile, would torment offenses with Jaren Jackson Jr. The 26-year-old is one of the best shot blockers in the league and just had his most efficient scoring season to date, rocking a 61.5 true shooting percentage. His shooting would be helpful, but he could also maintain more of a presence inside while Jackson roams the perimeter.