Andre Iguodala’s tenure with the Grizzlies had been mostly quiet until Monday night.
Outside of the occasional ambiguous tweet from the veteran forward — a staple of his social media presence — he was an afterthought for a young team finally looking like a future contender. Iguodala, dealt to Memphis by the Warriors, has not suited up with the Grizzlies this season, asking for a trade to a contender or a buyout.
With the trade deadline Thursday, the situation has gained urgency and tension. After Memphis beat the Pistons 96-82 on Monday, 24-year-old wing Dillon Brooks said he hopes Iguodala gets traded so the Grizzlies can “show him really what Memphis is about.” Ja Morant, the league’s Rookie of the Year frontrunner, amplified that message via Twitter.
MORE: Ja Morant is pushing Memphis ahead of schedule
Iguodala, 36, spent the previous five seasons competing for NBA titles with the Warriors. He was offloaded by Golden State to clear cap space, and there was reportedly a mutual understanding when he arrived in Memphis that he would not play a role in the Grizzlies’ 2019-20 campaign. His absence has allowed Brooks the playing time needed to enjoy a breakout third season in Memphis.
The Grizzles are 25-25 — much better than many expected them to be at this point. They have a shot at securing a Western Conference playoff berth. Their young core is bristling at the idea of a player not wanting to be part of their mission and sudden success, even if that player was never meant to join the squad.
Memphis is reportedly holding firm in its trade demands for Iguodala, who is ready to sit out the rest of the season if a deal isn’t made this week, according to The Athletic.
The Iguodala situation is fascinating because Memphis is adamant that it will not buy him out if a trade fails to materialize by Thursday’s 3 PM buzzer. You obviously expect the Grizzlies to say that now … but there are only 75 hours left to find a trade anticipated for months
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) February 3, 2020