Eric Bledsoe could be on the move again after trade from Pelicans to Grizzlies
Eric Bledsoe, who New Orleans included in a trade package, is not expected to stay in Memphis, league sources tell @YahooSports.
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) July 26, 2021
The 31-year old guard was part of the package the New Orleans Pelicans sent to the Grizzlies in exchange for veteran center Jonas Valanciunas. The Pelicans also traded center Steven Adams, the No. 10 and No. 40 picks in the 2021 NBA Draft, and a top-1o protected 2022 first-round pick (via the Lakers). Memphis also sent the No. 17 and No. 51 picks in Thursday’s draft to New Orleans.
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Pelicans are attempting to free up cap space to either match an offer for restricted free agent Lonzo Ball or spend on another free agent veteran point guard (Kyle Lowry?) to pair with Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram.
New Orleans creates salary cap space for August that allows them to either match an offer sheet on Lonzo Ball, or have the cap space to pursue a significant free agent point guard, including Kyle Lowry and others. Pels liked Valanciunas as floor spacer at center over Adams, too. https://t.co/3YRyBTEg1S
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 26, 2021
The Grizzlies have a handful of quality young players in their backcourt, including Ja Morant, Desmond Bane, D’Anthony Melton and Grayson Allen.
Bledsoe largely struggled in his lone season in New Orleans, averaging 12.2 points and 3.8 assists per game — his lowest marks since 2013. He put up .421/.341/.687 shooting splits over 71 games.
Bledsoe was traded to the Pelicans prior to the 2020-21 season after spending two-plus seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks. The Bucks also sent four first-round picks to New Orleans for Jrue Holiday, who just helped Milwaukee secure its first NBA championship in 50 years.
Bledsoe has two years remaining on the four-year, $70 million deal he signed in 2019. According to one report, the Philadelphia 76ers could be a possible landing spot for Bledsoe.